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S40.E03: Bill Hader / Hozier

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This may be one of the few times I don't f/f through the musical act.  I only know one Hozier song (Take Me to Church), but I absolutely love it.

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My favorite radio station plays another Hozier song every once in awhile, but I can't remember the name of it. Anyway, I too am looking forward to "Take Me to Church." That song...well, it takes me to church, tbh.

 

And I'm looking forward to Bill as well, inevitable cameos aside (I'm fairly certain we'll see Kristen, Seth, and then maybe Fred just because).

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Just give me a new Vincent Price Halloween Special, and it's all good.

This must happen. I hoping Jon Hamm drops in for a cameo (and Kristen and Fred stay away).
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On his show, Seth Myers just said he's doing a show in Vegas this Saturday. That could possibly rule out classic you know who. It wouldn't be the same.

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On his show, Seth Myers just said he's doing a show in Vegas this Saturday. That could possibly rule out classic you know who. It wouldn't be the same.

 

Wow. I can't imagine Hader hosting SNL and not doing his signature character.

But I also can't imagine him doing it without Seth.

 

But I also can't imagine Seth returning with Stefon when there are already 2 male Weekend Update hosts.

 

Anyway, Hader was on Howard Stern Tuesday, and Stern tried to get him to revive his (Stern's) favorite sketch, the Vietnam veterans' puppets one. So maybe we'll get that.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=comdwuZPjiI

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Stefon isn't the same without Seth, but I think they could do it. He could come out and just be really confused about Colin and Michael. Actually, it might shake the bit up a little (not that it needs shaking up, but hey, always nice to try something different).

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 Stefon originated outside of WU in a sketch with Ben Affleck so they could always bring him back and do another sketch.  He did show up for a cameo at the Sefon/Seth wedding in Hader's sendoff.

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Stefon originated outside of WU in a sketch with Ben Affleck so they could always bring him back and do another sketch. He did show up for a cameo at the Sefon/Seth wedding in Hader's sendoff.

Plus, bonus, a current movie to plug. Gone Stefon?

Edited by GaryE

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I think I would actually rather see Bill's James Carville than see Stefon sans Seth.  Actually I think I would rather see Carville anyway.

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Well they did the mini version of "What Up With That" for the promos, so I really don't think we'll see that one this weekend.  

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Well they did the mini version of "What Up With That" for the promos, so I really don't think we'll see that one this weekend.  

 

Thank goodness. That sketch exhausts me.

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I'm guessing you're probably right, but, I hope not. Cast bloat is still the biggest issue facing the show. The net decrease from last seasons already too big cast was 3 and with Leslie Jones and Mike O'brien making cameos up from the writing room on occasion. There's still a lot of performers to try and identify with.

 

Lorne is doing the current cast, especially the featured players, a disservice by trotting out the old cast to do old sketches. Watching Late Night last week it looks like Fred has been in Portland all week wrapping up shooting on the new Portlandia series. So hopefully he stays away. I mean is anyone really looking forward to a new "Californians"?

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I am! I'm probably the only person who genuinely likes that sketch, but I really do hope they do a new Californians. I don't know why, but those blondes talking about traffic always cracks me up.

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They could have done a pre-taped piece of Stefon and Seth in wedded bliss. Or even taped it on Seth's set, have Stefon showing up to try to coax Seth away for some daytime clubbing. "New York's hottest daytime club is It's got everything... Dry Ice Smoothies, non-Alcoholic vodka, and a Vigoda Pagoda. It's that thing where a bunch of Asian Abe Vigoda impersonators stand on each others shoulders, and you have to climb to the top."

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I like the Californians too! However, it may be mainly due to Fred's reading of "What are you doing here?" and the crack ups that ensue.

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Here is hoping that they do a salute to Jan Hooks - and hope she gets more than that woeful Pardo "salute".

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Here is hoping that they do a salute to Jan Hooks - and hope she gets more than that woeful Pardo "salute".

 

I have a feeling that's all we're going to get. I mean, Pardo was a huge part of the show and got that. I can't imagine Jan Hooks getting anything more.

 

In other news....

 

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Edited by nowandlater

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Have they ever done much in the live shows to acknowledge deceased former cast members?  A "Best of" special feels more appropriate to me.  The current cast members didn't know Jan Hooks any better than I did.

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Have they ever done much in the live shows to acknowledge deceased former cast members?  A "Best of" special feels more appropriate to me.  The current cast members didn't know Jan Hooks any better than I did.

Actually yes, 

 

When Belushi died on March 5, 1982, the first show back was on March 20 and Brian Doyle-Murray did a tribute to Belushi at the end of the episode. 

 

When Radner died, it was the season finale and Steve Martin paid tribute to her in his monologue by re-showing an old sketch of his. 

 

I'm not too sure about O'Donoghue or Vance. Farley's death happened during the Christmas hiatus and Hartman's happened during the summer 

 

So in other words, it's entirely possible but we'll have to see. I personally would like to see a tribute to her. 

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Have they ever done much in the live shows to acknowledge deceased former cast members?  A "Best of" special feels more appropriate to me.  The current cast members didn't know Jan Hooks any better than I did.

 

Steve Martin showed a clip from last week's Vintage (the dancing) when Gilda died.  They aired a special episode remembering Hartmann within a couple weeks.  I think he died right after the regular season. I think Spade did something for Farley on the show and if I remember correctly, they played Farley singing "Goodbye" to Hartmann from his last SNL episode which was heartbreaking since the were both gone.  It kind of reminded me of Steve Martin/Gilda Radner dancing. 

 

The two minute mark for Hartman.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/stacylambe/the-top-5-snl-departures?sub=1578360_309810

 

Funny at the time and eerily poignant that they have all these sweet clips of the cast members who've passed. I don't remember if they showed Gilda's "Stop Following Me"  but that is one that gets to me for completely different reasons now.

 

I've seen Hader do interviews where he talks about how underrated the female cast members have been and name drop Jan Hooks so I'm hoping for something more than a dedication.

Edited by ParadoxLost
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I've joined to post to this.  For Farley, the next show was a Christmas Past, and they opened with his interview of Paul McCartney and had a slide with his name and dates.  The Spade tribute wasn't until the next anniversary show, I think the next fall.  For O'Donoghue, I remember (vaguely) Bill Murray hosted and talked about him being in hell in the monoloogue.

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The Jan Hooks tribute was great and to give us Hartman her with was a huge punch to the gut.

 

So even hosts who can't sing get a musical Monologue?

 

Once again Wiig has to dominate every single freaking sketch she's in.  I'm glad they kept her to just the one, but still..  Watching Hollywood Game Night you'd never guess who was the actual host.

 

I have to wonder what it is with the Vincent Price that they don't do it.  is it that they don;t have anyone who can can do an era appropriate impersonation?  Or is it that they feel the audience doesn't get who he is anymore?

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I thought "Barack...Mitt" was the joke of the night.  That's probably how I'm going to think of them from now on.  Well the constant dissing of Dan Cortese was great too.  That guy was always lame.

 

I thought it was a good episode, not great.  It was a little disjointed and the energy seemed off, but I guess that's to be expected with the news this week.   Even if Lorne was the only one who knew Jan, I'm sure it was just awful.  And sure some bits didn't work tonight, but I just can't criticize them too hard this week.  

 

The tribute was lovely.  I hope both of them were smiling while it played. 

 

 

So even hosts who can't sing get a musical Monologue?

 

Was he sorta making fun of all the music monologues?  I kinda thought that was the idea, but it didn't go full out on it.

Edited by vb68

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This might be the first SNL I've watched all the way through in over a year. And live. Good work, Bill.

 

I wish they didn't repeat the puppet sketch. It was a hilarious and totally random sketch the first time, but repeating it using the same kind of jokes as before wasn't the best decision. But I did like the twist with the puppet flashback to the war - I think I would have actually preferred it if the entire sketch was just the puppet flashback.

 

Pete Davidson really stood out to me during his first appearance on Weekend Update, but his stand up this time was a little dull. Maybe it was his delivery, but he didn't seem as enthusiastic this time around. I think he has a lot of potential though, so I'm glad they decided to feature him a lot this episode. 

 

I feel like it might get looked over, but I loved the 39 cents sketch!

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Wonderful show! Loved seeing Bill and Kristen together again. She had Hozier's second intro because Bill was in Cat makeup and they didn't want to spoil it. He's a natural in those outrageous makeup jobs. Why does it seem so normal on him?

 

I'll have to watch this again. Favorite jokes were the bad taste ones like Help Fund, Anthony Peter Coleman, and of course king of offense Herb Welch. 

 

"One of each" about the WU anchors was hilarious. A black guy and an invisible one.

 

Much better quality control from the writers this week.

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Can't say I was blown away, but Hader has never been my favorite outside of portraying Stefon. 

 

I totally get why folks are irritated at Wiig constantly returning and stealing the show, but I can't say it bothers me. I thought she elevated the opening monologue, along with the Hollywood Game Night sketch. I love her as Kathy Lee. But, again, I can see why it feels like she eats whatever sketches she appears in. 

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Opening: Pretty funny. I really liked how they had Moynihan so much shorter than everybody else (as it should've been). Not the funniest but pretty funny. 

 

Monologue: A singing monologue with Kristen Wiig randomly showing up and taking over everything is my worst nightmare. Go away Wiig. Love the random Harvey Fierstein cameo. I would've loved it so much better if it was Jon Lovitz doing Fierstein and then he could've been utilized later in the episode for what was ahead. 

 

Herb Welch: I didn't love nor hate this character. This sketch mostly worked because of Taran. 

 

Group Hoppers: I feel like this sketch was just very incomplete. It had some great ideas in here, but it was just really all over the place. I liked the ideas behind it and how haphazard it all was in a way. I just think it needed more time in the oven. Bill as the king/queen was glorious though. 

 

Hollywood Game Night: Ahh the usual Impression collection sketches. Once I heard "And from NBC's Today Show..." I groaned audibly. UGH. Really?! You were already in the monologue Kristen, you're not hosting. Go away! I have to say that the impressions of everybody save for Kathie Lee were pretty damn amazing. Especially Beck as Nick Offerman and Taran as Christoph Waltz. The sketch could've been better. 

 

39 Cents a Day Ad: Okay, can they PLEASE just add Leslie Jones to the cast?! Clearly, she needs to be added. She's very good. Anywho, I like this sketch and the idea behind it. Sometimes I wonder if those villagers really do think that. It was clever and Hader was the best option for the host guy. 

 

Love is a Dream: When I saw what the tribute was going to be, I cheered a little too loud. I grinned for the first part then when Hartman came into the fray in that soldier uniform, the tears began. Part of me has this mental image that it was Phil dressed up in that garb that guided Jan to the great beyond. Also, I must say that even though this isn't funny, it's probably one of my favorite things SNL has ever done. 

 

Weekend Update: Still not sure what to think of this duo. Che is fine but Jost is just suckling the teat of his head writer status. I liked the little diatribe from Che about the deadbeat gay man who lost his excuse for refusing to marry. Pete Davidson, meanwhile, just completely bombed this week. Not his best week at all. However, it was quick so it doesn't bring things down that low. And of course, there's Stefon. I have to say I kept cracking up when Stefan would say "Dan Cortese" and 

 

Puppet Class 2 Electric Boogaloo: Out of all the sketches in all the world...this is the one you decide to bring back?! I mean I loved the first edition but geez, man. Some things are just better left as one hit wonders (see: Brenda the Waitress or Greenhilly from the vintage episode earlier tonight). That being said, I did really enjoy the Puppet war flashback. I just still wish this was a one hit wonder sketch. 

 

SoCal Cable Access Show: I forget the name of it. This definitely captures that stoner late 90s-early 00s attitude of things and I liked how quick everything went. The relationship argument was amusing and then Moynihan at the end was awesome. 

 

Cat in the Hat: Oh man, this was lovely. I mean at first it was weird then I began to really dig it...then Taran showed up as Thing 2 or Jonathing and I really got to laughing then. 

 

Overall, not a bad show. Thank sweet merciful crap it wasn't a full Cast Reunion episode. The first half definitely went into The Kristen Wiig Show f/ Bill Hader territory but thankfully she wasn't to be found in the second half of the show. I was so fearful they wouldn't have a Jan Hooks tribute after the lackluster Don Pardo tribute they gave earlier in the season. And they played exactly what I wanted to see too. 

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Hollywood Game Night: Ahh the usual Impression collection sketches.

 

39 Cents a Day Ad: Okay, can they PLEASE just add Leslie Jones to the cast?! Clearly, she needs to be added. She's very good. Anywho, I like this sketch and the idea behind it. Sometimes I wonder if those villagers really do think that. It was clever and Hader was the best option for the host guy. 

 

My favorite thing about the Hollywood Game Night sketch was every time Kate, as Jane, said "this is a real game we play."  Because yeah, those are real games they play, although not how they play them. 

 

And I agree about Leslie Jones.   Outside of her appearances at the desk, her air time in sketches that she's in has never been more than about 30 seconds.  Maybe, if we had more of her, we'd discover 30 seconds is the perfect amount.  But since she usually gets me to laugh at once in those 30 second appearances, she certainly deserves a bump to "featured player." 

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Cold Open: What do I have to do to get a decent Cold Open around here? Three episodes into the season and none of them have been good. There's only so much even Bobby can do when the writing is so poor.

 

Monologue: Bill was doing just fine on his own (though I'm always a little weirded out at seeing him as himself, since he's such a versatile sketch performer) and then She Who Refuses To Move The Fuck On had to show up AND DO A MUSICAL MONOLOGUE NO LESS. I knew it was coming and I didn't even dislike Kristen as much as most people but GOD. You are Oscar-nominated writer, please do something with your time and stop coming back. But, um, hey Harvey Fierstein, what's crackin'?

 

Herb Welch: I laughed like a loon through this whole thing and wish it had been longer. I always loved this sketch, even if they don't change it up that much.

 

The Group Hopper: This definitely hit the right chord of YA-novels-turned-movies nowadays. They seem to get more and more convoluted as writers try not to look like they're copying Harry Potter or The Hunger Games. But I felt it went on for too long. Like, we got the point.

 

Hollywood Game Night: I'm a sucker for sketches that are basically just there to show off the cast's impressions, and I thought this was aight. I didn't even mind Kristen as KLG because that was probably one of my favorite things she ever did on the show. Kate as Jane Lynch is always great. The only thing that annoyed me was that they didn't even bother to get how the games were played right. I understand it was probably a matter of saving time and keeping the blocking uncomplicated (there's a lot of up and down in the real HGN) but it kind of took me out of the sketch.

 

HelpFund: Please make Leslie Jones a featured player. I didn't start enjoying this sketch until she showed up.

 

Love Is A Dream: Okay, I wasn't even an idea when Jan Hooks and Phil Hartman were on the show, but I totally teared up at this. Wonderfully appropriate tribute.

 

Weekend Update: STEFON. When Bill broke at "a doorman who always high-fives children of divorce" like he didn't understand it all, I lost it. Yeah, Pete wasn't as good this time. I might have blanked out for a second but when Michael was introducing him he talked about guns and then Pete was suddenly talking about gold chains and I have no idea where the transition was. Also, it felt like there were barely any jokes this week, though most of the ones they told were solid. But ack, three episodes in and Michael is more interesting to watch than Colin.

 

Puppets: I liked this sketch when they first did it but there was no reason to bring it back and I didn't laugh once. What made it good the first time was the unexpectedness of Bill's character.

 

Inside SoCal: Eh, miss. Nothing different from the first time they did it.

 

Cat In The Hat: I wanted to like this so much (I have a weird loyalty to the 10-to-1 sketches) but it just didn't do it for me. Funny concept, lackluster execution.

 

On a writing level, this episode was weak as hell. Most of it relied on recurring bits and impressions, which I realize is a hazard of having an alum host (unless you're Sarah Silverman and the most substantial thing you did with your tenure was ask questions from the audience). But you know what? Bill is so damn funny that I didn't really care. I laughed out loud and that's all that matters.

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This episode was ok. I really, really wish that we would have gotten a Vincent Price sketch. Stefon will never not be funny to me. I like Kristen Wiig but tonight was just WAY too much. Cecily Tyson's Sophia Vergara was perfection. Whoever played Bill Offerman in the game show sketch did a bang up job. Herb Welch on my tv screen makes me a happy girl. I thought the SoCal sketch was awful it just dragged on and it wasn't funny at all. I wish that the musical guests only got to do one number. Most of these current "musicians" and "singers" aren't good enough for 1 song let alone 2 songs. On an non Bill Hader note  I hadn't realized until this season how much I really like and look forward to seeing Taran Killam.

Edited by Dancingjaneway

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I loved the 39c sketch (LESLIE JONES FOR THE WIN), Jan Hooks tribute, "Inside SoCal," and Cat in the Hat.

 

Hollywood Game night would have been fine, but Wiig ruined it for me. If she could just dial it back to the same approximate level of every other performer on stage, her impression would have been fine. But she seems to feel the need to do everything at fifty times the volume and 100 times the exaggeration of everyone else, and it's like having someone grab the mic and beat me with it every time she appears....

 

which brings me to Herb Welch; I like that skit well enough, but it wasn't a highlight for me. Same with the puppet class-- if Hader was still around, it seems like they'd be trying to develop it more, what with the flashback they did this time, and that's not a bad idea-- it could be like each time they do it, it goes even deeper into the PTSD until eventually they give the guy a breakthrough. But with him being gone, and just coming back to host, it felt like bringing it back was a misstep.

 

I like Harvey Fierstein, and maybe they could have done something with the monologue, but inserting Kristin into it meant, once again, that she had to grab the spotlight and overtake even a truly big personality guest star.

 

My biggest laugh in the "group hoppers" came from the captions, which tagged the Chasidic group as "acidic." Also, I enjoyed Hader's costume scraping the ceiling.

 

I am another person who expected Pete to talk about guns, not gold chains, and I don't think they did have a transition. It was weird. I thought WU was funny, but again, Jost is just so bland, they really need to move him out of there. It's like I'm laughing despite his delivery, not because of it. I was happy to see Stefon, but it wasn't his best appearance.

 

I thought the cold open was fine, I don't know why I didn't like it more, actually. It's the kind of thing I usually appreciate.

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During Stefan's bit, I saw how crucial Seth was to the whole thing.  Che did fine, but it just wasn't the same.

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I loved the 'Cat in the Hat' sketch! "Oh the places she let me go!"

 

Bill cracking up every time he had to say "Dan Cortese" was great. 

 

 

Hollywood Game night would have been fine, but Wiig ruined it for me. If she could just dial it back to the same approximate level of every other performer on stage, her impression would have been fine. But she seems to feel the need to do everything at fifty times the volume and 100 times the exaggeration of everyone else, and it's like having someone grab the mic and beat me with it every time she appears....

 

Looking at Kate McKinnon while Wiig was next to her during the final round I don't think that annoyance was acting.

Edited by VCRTracking
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Howard Stern told Bill Hader earlier in the week that the Puppet sketch was his favorite of all time, and begged him to bring it  back. Hader said he'll try to get it on...

 

Here's the direct link to that portion of the interview.

 

(For those who don't know, Howard Stern used to trash SNL back in the 90s. He even had his own CBS show that went up against SNL. But over the past decade, he's become friends with Lorne. And sometimes they go out to dinner. So Howard is influential.)

 

 

Also:

 

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Edited by nowandlater
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Watched twice. Best show in a long time! Couldn't believe how nervous Bill revealed himself to be at the end. He's a real pro. Iron Chef's loss.

 

 

Glad Kristen was there to support. Skeleton Twins is one of the biggest Indie hits of the year and has had amazing reviews, particularly noting their off the chart chemistry.

 

Pete is even better in sketches than I would have expected. Very promising. Beck and Kyle better watch out. The young guy will rocket past them if they stubbornly cling to their own particular mumblecore style. 

 

The regular cast has some great utility people but no stars, other than Kate imo. I believe this is why they lean on the past. Why not take advantage of the stars they created? I don't take it for granted that this show will be around forever. Any season could be it's last. TV is changing.

 

Leslie is very funny, but she may be too one note to succeed on the main cast. But I'm all for giving her a shot!

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If she could just dial it back to the same approximate level of every other performer on stage, her impression would have been fine.

 

She would have had to be impersonating somebody other than Kathy Lee Gifford for that.

Edited by pythonite
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Just wanted to add how much I liked the Jan Hooks tribute. She was really pretty in that, and still looked pretty good as an old woman. As was already pointed out, that bit was not meant to be funny, but it was whimsical,l and the best send-off I think they could have come up with. The End.

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