Charlie Day helps SNL deliver its best episode since the season premiere

By | November 6, 2011 at 8:56 pm | 2 comments | feature slider, Reviews, TV/Movies | Tags: , , ,

A few weeks off-air seems to have done good for the crew at Saturday Night Live. Not since this season’s premiere with host Alec Baldwin has the show delivered such a competent episode. Last night’s effort found underdog Charlie Day — co-star of FX’s ensemble cult hit, It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia — as the show’s host. And gosh darn it, he did well– better than any other host this season– excluding Baldwin. Sure, Day uses yelling as a crutch too often, but other than that, it was a pleasure to see him onscreen. So, let’s get to the specifics, shall we?

Fred Armisen does a solid job as the ghost of Muammar Gaddafi in this week’s cold opening. In three minutes the writers of SNL were able to hit most every aspect of the dictator’s life and death with great humor. Check it out.

Dude. Did anyone else have an incredible sense of hope and joy by the end of Charlie Day’s monologue—like this episode of SNL was going to buck the show’s trend of being pathetically average to terrible? Day came out stronger in his monologue than any other host this season. And as much as I love Danny DeVito is monologue drop-in only deterred from Day’s outstanding performance.

We all knew a Kim Kardashian sketch had to happen this week. In case you just came out of a coma, Kim divorced her husband Kris Humphries after 72 days of marriage a few days ago. And SNL’s take on it left me wanting nothing. This was a nearly perfectly-executed sketch that lampoons the Kardashian family so hard and in a mean-spirited way, which is exactly what they deserve. Well done, SNL.

I have a psychotic hatred for Dr. Oz. So perhaps Bill Hader and Charlie Day didn’t have to do much to please me during this sketch. But I think even if I didn’t want to punch Dr. Oz in the balls I would’ve enjoyed the way they stick it up that pretentious dickhole’s ass. It seemed like Day knew the sketch better Hader, as you can see the former actor staring off into the distance a few too many times. As was the case in his monologue, Day exhibits complete confidence and excellent timing in this sketch. Beware the dead rectum.

Though it drags on a bit too long, this take on the current Greek financial crisis comes off competently, with Jason Sudeikis playing Zeus looking to his underling gods for a solution. Who knew adult contemporary musician Yanni was a god? He is.

Why does it seem every sketch show in every era needs a bit that features a black guy who doles out retro-era advice about fucking? In this one, the host of the fake sex advice show is Cee-Lo Green. It’s all pretty pointless and boring, at best.

In this parody commercial, we meet the Kings of Catchphrase Comedy— again. Can you pick out all the subtle and not-so-subtle references to real-life comedians? I’m thinking there’s at least a Dane Cook, a Whitney Cummings, a Demetri Martin (if he wasn’t smart and soft-spoken) and an Anjelah Johnson in there. Skip this if you want. It wasn’t stellar.

Hey, let’s watch some Weekend Update highlights.

More Weekend Update highlights. Kristen Wiig’s character Judy Grimes is a powerful tool for the veteran sketch player to show off her wordplay prowess. It’s shame, however, that it’s not funny and totally fucking annoying. Is it me, or is Wiig failing a lot this season?

How many times have you watched the coverage of a seemingly-intoxicated Gov. Rick Perry attempt to give a speech in New Hampshire last week? If you watched it only once, you’re really missing out on a lot of joy. Well, Bill Hader and the crew at SNL have their own take on it. It’s nothing groundbreaking but it’s darn funny. Hooray!

Shadow is a movie star dolphin and Charlie Day plays the star of Because of one Dolphin, a horrible movie that Morgan Freeman should be in. But Day has some problems executing the emotional climax of the movie. Check it out.

In the final sketch, Day plays a stereotypical veteran detective— the ones you always see on television. He embodies every cliché but the twist is that he never watches television—or does he? This is just straight-up silly. I like it.

If you’re keeping track of my SNL Win-Loss record, I’m counting this as a win. That makes the show’s record this season: 2-2-1. But what did you guys think? Am I right? Am I wrong? Am I crazy? Sound off in the comments section!

About the Author

Dylan P. Gadino

Dylan is the founder and editor in chief of Laughspin. He launched Punchline Magazine in 2005 (which became Laughspin in the summer of 2011) with childhood friend Bill Bergmann. Dylan lives in northern New Jersey with his wife and two sons. He hopes the Shire is real.

  • Anonymous

    YAAAAAAAY!!! Finally another FANTASTIC episode of SNL. Now, I’m totally on board with just about everything you said, but the one thing that stuck out to me about your review was your idea that Kristen Wiig is somehow “failing a lot this season?” What?? I would like to think you’re trying to pull the wool over our eyes and lure us into a Judy Grimes-esque “Just Kidding” rant about how much you actually like her in that sketch. That’s good writing! I imagine you watching this show and immediately having two strikes against SNL. So, when Judy Grimes came out as a guest on Weekend Update (assuming you do have prior knowledge of her as a character, if not, please let ME write the SNL reviews…) you gave up on the sketch, fast. I’m then assuming you Tweeted something smug about how she’s just “yammering on” and there isn’t “substance” to what she’s saying. And, annoying? C’mon… COME ON!! Great character, great sketch and overall a GREAT SNL this past week. It takes some commitment from someone who “uses yelling as a crutch too often” to get great work out of this SNL cast. Also, the “Greek God” sketch was fuckin’ great!! Greek God of Music – Yanni was enough for me. It could’ve gone on for 10 minutes, but Yanni saved it. Plus, watching someone try to get wig hair out of their face is too funny… PLEASE DON’T HATE ME!!!
    -jim

  • Anonymous

    YAAAAAAAY!!! Finally another FANTASTIC episode of SNL. Now, I’m totally on board with just about everything you said, but the one thing that stuck out to me about your review was your idea that Kristen Wiig is somehow “failing a lot this season?” What?? I would like to think you’re trying to pull the wool over our eyes and lure us into a Judy Grimes-esque “Just Kidding” rant about how much you actually like her in that sketch. That’s good writing! I imagine you watching this show and immediately having two strikes against SNL. So, when Judy Grimes came out as a guest on Weekend Update (assuming you do have prior knowledge of her as a character, if not, please let ME write the SNL reviews…) you gave up on the sketch, fast. I’m then assuming you Tweeted something smug about how she’s just “yammering on” and there isn’t “substance” to what she’s saying. And, annoying? C’mon… COME ON!! Great character, great sketch and overall a GREAT SNL this past week. It takes some commitment from someone who “uses yelling as a crutch too often” to get great work out of this SNL cast. Also, the “Greek God” sketch was fuckin’ great!! Greek God of Music – Yanni was enough for me. It could’ve gone on for 10 minutes, but Yanni saved it. Plus, watching someone try to get wig hair out of their face is too funny… PLEASE DON’T HATE ME!!!
    -jim