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Princess Sparkle

S45.E09: Scarlett Johansson/Niall Horan

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Johansson was pretty good last time.  Didn't they have some alien dog sketch that was hilarious?

OMG another One Direction guy.  A quick sampling on Youtube leads me to think he should give 3/4 of his money to the Arctic Monkeys, but maybe it's just the accent.

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On 12/12/2019 at 11:11 AM, Princess Sparkle said:

Scarlett Johansson might be the most surprising member of the 5-timers club to me.

I know because when you think of comedy, you automatically think of Scarlett Johansson.

So do they even acknowledge her relationship/engagement to Colin? Do we get all the other guys flirting with her much to his increasing chagrin/concern/anger/panic?   

Edited by vb68
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2 hours ago, vb68 said:

I know because when you think of comedy, you automatically think of Scarlett Johansson.

So do they even acknowledge her relationship/engagement to Colin? Do we get all the other guys flirting with her much to his increasing chagrin/concern/anger/panic?   

I have a feeling they may not mention it, but I'd enjoy a monologue where she brings out Emma Stone where they talk about everything but being engaged to SNL men. Or Leslie Jones appears and begins berating her for taking her man. Then Kyle walks out and says, "but I thought I was your man..." and she snaps that was just for TV, until he looks sad and she tells him she was just kidding and they walk off together. 

I watched a little of her first episode recently and she had a duet with Amy Poehler. It felt like a whole different world. I guess it was. 

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8 minutes ago, opus said:

Who was Baby Yoda?

If it's the piece cut from the dress rehearsal last week (mentioned in the thread), it's Kyle. 

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Cold Open: This was all depressingly real. Kenan's family was the best. "Play the politically correct version of Baby It's Cold Outside." Way better than any of the other political cold opens this season so far.

Monologue: Getting the Jost jokes out of the way immediately, it's a good sign. Oh man, NOW they pull out the Snap jokes?! Either way, loved it. Loved that PETE was the one with the Infinity Gauntlet. Also loved the jokes about Pete skipping shows, and Kenan as Nick Fury mad that "when you've been on the show as long as I have, they let you do it."

Santa Land: So we have two weeks in a row with inappropriate carolers. I was expecting that Da Baby was robbing everyone in line while Kenan and Scarlett were rapping. This was so weird, but in a good way.

Macy's: No kid likes winter clothes, especially from Macy's. This was definitely written by someone with kids. I loved this so much, plus it almost looked like a real commercial.

Office Christmas Party: Charly The Perv is back! This was hilarious. Kenan's having a stellar week, and certainly making up for that one week where he pretty much wasn't there.

A Conway Marriage Story: A Marriage Story spoof with Kellyanne & George Conway. I love it. "YOU'RE NOT EVEN VERIFIED ON TWITTER! WHERE'S YOUR BLUE CHECK, GEORGE?!" slayed me.

WU: The news is just depressing, there, I said it. Loved seeing Bowen's Chinese trade guy again. I knew that they couldn't resist a Penis Fish joke, but Kyle as Baby Yoda came out of nowhere. It was a pleasant surprise.

"Who makes you happy? Bill Cosby or Colin Limbaugh Jost?" Shots fired, Che.

Hot Tub: Looks like the two former pornstars have died and inhabited a hot tub and sing about how they drowned. And also Ego in a swimsuit. This was dumb, but oddly sweet at the same time.

A Winter Boyfriend For Holiday Christmas: A timely Hallmark Christmas movie sketch, now in game show form! Definitely genius. So the three contestants: A local (ghost) that works at a Christmas Tree farm, the Prince of Caucasia, and Nick Claus. I just loved the aside of the killer going free at Christmas.

I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus: Cecily was so good here. I knew that they'd go the route of "dad was watching" (heaven knows that they won't do this straight) but it just kept going and going.

Bar: Oh wow, a sketch about the couple in the choking hazard poster, was not expecting that at all. Definitely an inspired premise. I love sketches that use everyone, and I wish there was more of every cast member descending on them like zombies.

Mind Reading Device: Oh what joy, there's a dog in a sketch again. This time it's a pug. This was kind of weak, since the dog was raised of Fox News.

2 minutes ago, Frisky Wig said:

Is it me or does Bowen Yang play pretty much the same character in every skit on every episode?

You're not alone. Is it wrong to think that Bowen Yang keeps playing characters that Damon Wayans got fired for?

So next week is the long awaited return of Eddie Murphy. I'm hyped...but this show likes to toss curveballs at us. I thought tonight was great, when I barely had any expectations for it.

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Wait . . . Scarlett Johannson . . . is involved with Colin Jost? For real?!? Nothing makes sense anymore!

On 12/13/2019 at 6:26 PM, JZL said:

Johansson was pretty good last time.  Didn't they have some alien dog sketch that was hilarious?

11 minutes ago, Galileo908 said:

Mind Reading Device: Oh what joy, there's a dog in a sketch again. This time it's a pug. This was kind of weak, since the dog was raised of Fox News.

Max the Pug!! I'm thinking some might not have been impressed with this follow-up. The set-up was stellar, but Max wasn't fussing with the helmet this time.

Infinity War/dusting bit for the monologue? A bit dated . . . but I'll allow it. I've seen Infinity Gauntlets here are there . . . including one comic con where you could get those signed by the writers of the original Infinity Gauntlet comic. Those look like a bitch to effectively snap your fingers, though.

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36 minutes ago, Frisky Wig said:

Is it me or does Bowen Yang play pretty much the same character in every skit on every episode?

 It's not just you. 

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16 minutes ago, Galileo908 said:

Monologue: . . .  Loved that PETE was the one with the Infinity Gauntlet.

"Oh my God, Mikey!" 

"I think that was maybe Alex."

"It's the same thing."

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2 minutes ago, Lantern7 said:

Infinity War/dusting bit for the monologue? A bit dated . . . but I'll allow it. I've seen Infinity Gauntlets here are there . . . including one comic con where you could get those signed by the writers of the original Infinity Gauntlet comic. Those look like a bitch to effectively snap your fingers, though.

I, too, went to East Coast Comic Con this year.

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Despite some weak spots, I thought it was a vast improvement over last week.

Loved all the meta lines in the monologue. "I don't think Pete got dusted. It's just one of those weeks he didn't show up."  "The first Asian cast member, and you're dusting me? Twitter is gonna eat you aliv....!"

Also loved Macy's, The Hot Tub, and Hallmark sketches. All the barbed lines at Hallmark tropes and cliches were terrific. And of course Baby Yoda. I was hoping they would do it after they cut him last week. I guess he was suppose to seem more adult, but minor complaint he was cute enough. Almost forgot Cecily's version of "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus."

Scarlett has really evolved as a host. She has that quiet confidence of a vet. Like in the Conway sketch, she had the minor part that just kept things moving. Basically she was the glue of it. I imagine most hosts would balk at something that small.

I did think Santa Land was a real clunker.

As for the Cold open, Meh. Well there weren't any guest star cameos, so a lot of people will like that.

I think Niall Horan's songs were fine, but he doesn't have the charisma or star quality of harry Styles.

Good episode, if a little low key as we await the mega expectations of Eddie's big return next week.  

Edited by vb68
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41 minutes ago, Frisky Wig said:

Is it me or does Bowen Yang play pretty much the same character in every skit on every episode?

He does, generally, but that's not too out of the norm for a lot of SNL cast members. Sometimes the material can be annoying but I think he's a good enough writer and has solid enough performance skills to make it work. The Update piece tonight, for instance, was no great shakes, but still managed some funny lines (I laughed when he said tariffs are "bitchy taxes").

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26 minutes ago, Izzy85 said:

I have no idea why, but for some reason I really liked the ghost strippers skit.

It was just goofy fun.  A little surprised it wasn't the last sketch, but it was great for the last half of the show. 

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Today Hallmark gave into conservative protestors and stopped airing commercials with same-sex kissing while allowing commercials with opposite-sex kissing.

That makes Che's joke, which boiled down to "men that watch Hallmark are gay" kind of mistargeted.  I did appreciate Aidy's last line in the dating show sketch "stay straight out there" to be much more direct and satisfying.

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1 hour ago, futurechemist said:

Today Hallmark gave into conservative protestors and stopped airing commercials with same-sex kissing while allowing commercials with opposite-sex kissing.

That makes Che's joke, which boiled down to "men that watch Hallmark are gay" kind of mistargeted.  I did appreciate Aidy's last line in the dating show sketch "stay straight out there" to be much more direct and satisfying.

It was a cheap joke, and I agree Aidy's line was better, but I kind of took it as - if you're worried Hallmark is going to turn somebody gay, it's too late. One of those bits I shouldn't have laughed at, but did. 

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Cold open - Well well well...when SNL trusts in its very good cast, you get a decent cold open. Glad to get to see one. And there were a few funny moments here and there (especially Kenan, Chris and Ego laughing over voting for Buttigieg).

Monologue - The monologue was a little shaky but it was nice to see a variation of the old backstage monologue. I've missed them.  Enjoyed some of the nods to many comments I've seen over the years (like not being able to tell Mikey and Alex apart, and Pete taking off whenever he wants) And they were a little more upfront about Colin and Scarlett's relationship than I'd expected, which was oddly sweet

Singing at the store - The James Anderson 'naughty club tracks, how shocking in 2019' fest we all knew would greet us. I mean...the 2017 one was better...this one was, well it was alright I guess. I was mostly wondering why Todrick Hall got so many plugs.

Macy's - As fun as 'relateable clothing shopping' pieces can be, breaking this one up for a bit of drama between the characters helped make it fresher for me. I always enjoy material where Mikey and Heidi play a couple. They just click

Firing - Kenan's finely honed comic style pretty much makes or breaks pieces like this. While it was somewhat clunky in execution, he was a lot of fun. And the ending was fairly decent, for once.

Conway story - More of a quiet indictment of the Conways than a comedy piece, but I can't say that bothers me too much. I'm glad to see the show just flat out told us they are grifters and downplayed the political aspects. Good work from Beck and Kate.

Hot tub - Yes, another song, with people commenting on what's going on. I have to admit I found this song very catchy (thanks Cecily...). Niall Horan was surprisingly decent in his cameo - for a moment I didn't even realize who he was. The pregnancy reveal was a sweet close.

Update #1 - Colin and Che continue to swerve most politics, which may be for the best. Some weak jokes, but Che comparing Colin to Bill Cosby and the Hallmark jokes made me laugh

Update #2 - Bowen Yang returns. I wasn't a huge fan of this the first time. Still don't love it, but very well-performed, and some great lines (especially when he said a tariff is a "bitchy tax.")

Update #3 - Only Kyle Mooney could make a "down" Baby Yoda pastiche work as well as this did. This was a bit of a sloppy mess but I enjoyed it and fortunately it didn't run too long.

I Saw - Cecily Strong is one of the only cast members who could have made this work - in both singing and acting she was top notch. Once you get past the "shocking" element the whole thing cobbled together satisfyingly - kudos to Mikey Day for his work as the kinky dad.

Dating - The Hallmark jokes have been done a zillion times and this had a bit of sluggishness. I did appreciate the extra touches (the awkward black friend, the touching visit with the father) and the very pointed homophobia jab at the end.

Choking - Nice to see a unique premise for a sketch. The ending was a bit 'eh' but overall this felt like the only live sketch of the night beyond the cold open that felt fresh. Nice work from Bowen Yang too.

Dog - Another one I didn't need to see again. Worked more than it should have as Beck effortlessly delivered the talking points you often hear in real life but SNL often tends to struggle in translating into jokes. I'm ashamed to admit I laughed at the "Tulsi 2020" ending.

Final thoughts: No standout moments (I liked the Macy's and Santa pre-tapes, cold open [feels weird to say that these days] and hot tub sketch the most), but the episode flowed well and used most of the cast. When the cold open is decent, it builds momentum for the night. Scarlett was a solid host who was happy to take a backseat, and the cast clearly enjoyed her presence. This helped lead to a warm feeling, which SNL, often confused and bloated in recent years, always needs. It's good to see the show acknowledge itself in a less cynical way. Along with the episodes hosted by Chance and Harbour, this episode sort of set a more positive path which at least makes you feel they aren't just trying to wind down the clock. Now please do a better job w/recurring sketches, and sharpen up the scripts before Eddie arrives. B+.

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The Macy’s commercial was hilarious.  Loved Kenan shutting the car door so that he could swear, Kate welcoming her daughter to womanhood when the girl complained of uncomfortable shoes and Chris insisting that you don’t wear jeans to church.

I disliked the Charlie the sexual harasser sketch so much the first time that they did it a year or two ago, that I think I posted twice about all the issues I had with it.  When I saw that they were doing it again tonight, I think I just thought, “Well, this may as well happen,” and checked out until the next sketch.  I did enjoy the show, save that sketch.

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An improvement over pretty much all of this season. There’s already a news headline about how the cold open took aim at the Electoral College, which is not what I took away from that skit. It was more a somewhat poignant look at how we are so divided and that’s basically the way life is now in America.

I will say I had an unusual amount of trouble understanding a lot of skits. Keenan spoke so quickly I could barely understand his security guard, and the singing hot tub number and the singing Santa number both made me strain. Closed captioning gave up a bunch of times.

I’m that dad in the elf singing skit... I would have been so relieved to have that performance and not (yet again) typical carols.

Macy’s commercial was great.

The Conways are so gross that I never need to see a skit about them. And skits about Hallmark are as uninteresting as watching Hallmark.

Max is right on... “name a Democratic candidate you’re excited about.” And everyone names 5 different people. 

Colin J is one lucky fellow. 

1 hour ago, Peace 47 said:

The Macy’s commercial was hilarious.  Loved Kenan shutting the car door so that he could swear, Kate welcoming her daughter to womanhood when the girl complained of uncomfortable shoes and Chris insisting that you don’t wear jeans to church.

I disliked the Charlie the sexual harasser sketch so much the first time that they did it a year or two ago, that I think I posted twice about all the issues I had with it.  When I saw that they were doing it again tonight, I think I just thought, “Well, this may as well happen,” and checked out until the next sketch.  I did enjoy the show, save that sketch.

I railed against that skit last time as well. It worked better with a woman being fired but still. 

Edited by Ottis
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You all are a tough crowd.  Lol. I love Niall Horan, and I thought he did great.  And no I am not some young thing...  

I liked the Macy’s commercial too...that was funny.  

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2 minutes ago, alexa said:

You all are a tough crowd.  Lol. I love Niall Horan, and I thought he did great.  And no I am not some young thing...  

I liked the Macy’s commercial too...that was funny.  

The first song had the usual audio issues on SNL but I liked both performances - the second one was very lovely. He seems like a pretty nice guy, a good writer and performer who doesn't have to play endless games to get publicity. I hope he has a happy career ahead of him. I'm glad SNL booked him. 

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8 minutes ago, Pete Martell said:

The first song had the usual audio issues on SNL but I liked both performances - the second one was very lovely. He seems like a pretty nice guy, a good writer and performer who doesn't have to play endless games to get publicity. I hope he has a happy career ahead of him. I'm glad SNL booked him. 

That is him in a nutshell.  He is not showy, he is very kind, and just enjoys what he does.  I know many think Harry is more popular but Niall has done just fine as a solo artist.  I am happy for him that it has worked out for him.  

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The Macy's commercial was hilarious and brilliantly accurate--those are EXACTLY the complaints I always had about my party clothes.

As was the Hallmark skit. The Prince Of Caucasia from a "vaguely European" country nailed it.

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The Macy’s commercial must have been written by a parent. The bit about how the wool sweaters won’t fit over their heads had me howling.

Streeter Seidell and Mikey Day, who are both parents, wrote the sketch according to Seidell’s Twitter, so yeah.

Edited by Eyes High
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9 hours ago, Mystery said:

"Oh my God, Mikey!" 

"I think that was maybe Alex."

"It's the same thing."

I loved that when they all came out and “reappeared” after Pete brought them back, that Mikey was out there instead of Alex

You know, I don’t always love Scarlett Johansson, but I thought she was pretty funny in this episode — “Oh no, what will we do without his paycheck” actually made me laugh out loud”. I was actually surprised at how non-reactive the audience was to a lot of the jokes — not just from her, but from everyone. The Hallmark skit and the hot tub one, it was especially apparent. 

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2 hours ago, Ottis said:

An improvement over pretty much all of this season. There’s already a news headline about how the cold open took aim at the Electoral College, which is not what I took away from that skit. It was more a somewhat poignant look at how we are so divided and that’s basically the way life is now in America.

I will say I had an unusual amount of trouble understanding a lot of skits. Keenan spoke so quickly I could barely understand his security guard, and the singing hot tub number and the singing Santa number both made me strain. Closed captioning gave up a bunch of times.

I’m that dad in the elf singing skit... I would have been so relieved to have that performance and not (yet again) typical carols.

Macy’s commercial was great.

The Conways are so gross that I never need to see a skit about them. And skits about Hallmark are as uninteresting as watching Hallmark.

Max is right on... “name a Democratic candidate you’re excited about.” And everyone names 5 different people. 

Colin J is one lucky fellow. 

I railed against that skit last time as well. It worked better with a woman being fired but still. 

(Bolding mine.).    Me too!  

I had to google Niall Horan.  Liked him.  

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I thought the cold open was one of the best they've had in a long time. Loved it. I wish they'd have more of these quiet cold openers without the flashy cameos. Loved the jokes about Michael Jackson.

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8 hours ago, Pete Martell said:

Conway story - More of a quiet indictment of the Conways than a comedy piece, but I can't say that bothers me too much.

I didn't get it at the time because I haven't watched the movie yet, but apparently it was a parody of Scarlett's film Marriage Story.

4 hours ago, Peace 47 said:

I disliked the Charlie the sexual harasser sketch so much the first time that they did it a year or two ago, that I think I posted twice about all the issues I had with it.  When I saw that they were doing it again tonight, I think I just thought, “Well, this may as well happen,” and checked out until the next sketch.  I did enjoy the show, save that sketch.

I know what you mean. I understand what they are doing, but I just don't find it funny. That one makes me cringe.

4 hours ago, Ottis said:

There’s already a news headline about how the cold open took aim at the Electoral College, which is not what I took away from that skit.

Yeah, I was thinking I didn't really get that, but then I realized I had totally forgotten about the lines they stuck on at the end. Whatever. It really wasn't what I took away from it.  I'll also stick to my guns that it wasn't that good and was rather lazy. 

3 hours ago, alexa said:

You all are a tough crowd.  Lol. I love Niall Horan, and I thought he did great.  And no I am not some young thing...  

I thought he was fine. Actually he was one of the better musical guests this fall. He's just not as flashy as Harry. But then again, Harry got to do more as he was hosting.

Edited by vb68
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Macy's ad: 'Sweaters with the wrong Frozen princess'- Ha! I don't even have kids, but I vividly remember not being able to get my head through the opening in the lumpy sweater my grandma knit for me for Christmas. 

I really liked both of Niall Horan's songs. The One Direction boys are doing good.

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Terrible episode. Only the Macy's sketch was funny. 

Also, Lets compare J-Lo to Scar-Jo...Scarlett Johansen is ACTUALLY hot, does not wear 6 pounds of makeup, does not dress like an aging streetwalker, does not appear to be an A-1 narcissist. Did not have to be praised and bowed to and reminded  how HOT!!! she is during the entire show. 

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1 hour ago, Princess Sparkle said:

You know, I don’t always love Scarlett Johansson, but I thought she was pretty funny in this episode — “Oh no, what will we do without his paycheck” actually made me laugh out loud”.

She had perfect delivery of that line.  During the monologue, I also enjoyed how the llama got dusted in the background of one of the shots.  That was a nice visual gag.

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11 hours ago, Pete Martell said:

[Re Bowen Yang playing the same character] He does, generally, but that's not too out of the norm for a lot of SNL cast members.

I agree to some extent, but are we just channeling the ghost of Kristen Wiig?

I thought this was a good episode with added creativity.  There was some meta stuff in the backstage monologue portion (references to Pete's absences and the Mikey/Alex duology)  There was a fair dose of political cynicism.  E.g., I liked how they twisted the CO theme at the end about how meaningless family political squabbles are unless you're one of a few thousand people in an electoral college swing state.  And then later Max-the-dog asking the humans to name a dem candidate they were excited about, etc.   Props to Max for sitting there with the contraption on his head-- maybe he was on doggie Quaaludes.

The Macy's sketch was great.  I thought Chris Redd was great at the end of the Hallmark sketch.  [Sidenote-- our VCR is jampacked with SWMBO's* Hallmark xmas shows]

*She Who Must Be Obeyed. IIRC, it's from the ole BBC comedy, Rumpole of the Bailey.

Edited by JZL
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12 hours ago, Frisky Wig said:

Is it me or does Bowen Yang play pretty much the same character in every skit on every episode?

I really wanted to like him, but I find him boring.  Yes, he does seem to play the same character.  And he always tries much too hard.   That takes me out of the premise/character every time.

10 hours ago, heatherchandler said:

This was the worst of the season.  What a stinker.

I don't know about the worst of the season, but I thought it was pretty bad.  I wasn't impressed with Scarlett at all.  I did love the Macy's thing - That was hilarious, one of the funniest I've seen on this show, which is saying something since I've been watching since the beginning.  But other than that, disappointing.   

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8 hours ago, Pete Martell said:

It was a cheap joke, and I agree Aidy's line was better, but I kind of took it as - if you're worried Hallmark is going to turn somebody gay, it's too late. One of those bits I shouldn't have laughed at, but did. 

I thought it was worse than cheap, it was somehow both sexist and nonsensical. Che seemed to be assuming that the couple in the ad and the "kid" watching Hallmark must be male, when the couple in the ad are female and the stereotypical Hallmark viewer is female. I get that the cheap joke Che was going for was that a man who watches Hallmark must be hilariously feminine and therefore gay, but it's at odds with the cheap joke he would make about straight men watching lesbians kiss. 

The audience laughed and clapped, though.

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Oh man. It wasn't too long ago that I was one of those kids in the Macy's ad. I think all those uncomfy fancy clothes are the reason I hate dressing up for anything now. Just let me wear jeans and a tshirt everywhere, dress codes are made up!

"Do not subtweet me at the dinner table."

Never gonna be able to look at that choking poster (why is it the exact same one in every restaurant?) the same again.

The dog mind-reader sketch was one of the highlights of Scarlett's last episode (which is probably why they repeated it) but it was so much worse here. I think because the original premise was so unexpected and therefore the jokes felt much sharper. This time we knew what was gonna happen. They even made almost the exact same comment about the dog getting snipped.

8 hours ago, Pete Martell said:

I was mostly wondering why Todrick Hall got so many plugs.

I was almost waiting for him to make a cameo, but he's probably a little too niche for that. Not somebody who would get a huge ton of recognition applause.

3 hours ago, Eyes High said:

The Macy’s commercial must have been written by a parent. The bit about how the wool sweaters won’t fit over their heads had me howling.

Streeter Seidell and Mikey Day, who are both parents, wrote the sketch according to Seidell’s Twitter, so yeah.

Mikey said on Instagram his son was one of the kids.

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20 minutes ago, helenamonster said:

Mikey said on Instagram his son was one of the kids.

I saw that! Very cute.

The part of the ad where Mikey and Heidi's characters are arguing over the snow boots was the best.
"If you can do it JUST DO IT!"

"You need to LEARN, NATHAN!"

"Daddy's a dumbass!"

If you look closely you can see the little girl playing their daughter cracking up. 

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I laughed so hard at Keenan's family during the open. Because that's pretty much how my family will be at Christmas. Including the Bad Boy 3 shoutout.

(Goes off to view trailer again.)

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2 hours ago, Princess Sparkle said:

I loved that when they all came out and “reappeared” after Pete brought them back, that Mikey was out there instead of Alex

1 hour ago, Peace 47 said:

She had perfect delivery of that line.  During the monologue, I also enjoyed how the llama got dusted in the background of one of the shots.  That was a nice visual gag.

I'm gonna have to start paying closer attention!

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Baby Yoda warning Baby Groot to back up got a chuckle out of me. I never saw any of the Guardians of the Galaxy movies so Baby Groot never became a thing for me. I expect the Baby Yoda merchandising will leave whatever happened with Baby Groot in the dust.

Are both the people in that choking poster supposed to be Asian? If so, Scarlett playing the woman seemed a bit in-your-face to me after the controversy over her role in Ghost in the Shell. Between that her continued support of Woody Allen, ugh.

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Scarlett is just as hot as J.Lo, if not moreso.  When we complained that J.Lo's show revolved around her being hot, the replies were that she IS hot so it makes sense.

But, I think Scarlett's episode shows how much more well rounded, and less sexist/basic/simplistic a show is without 70% of the sketches being focused on how she looks.  Real, actual writing had to be involved.  

Edited by Ms Blue Jay
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