‘Saturday Night Live’ review: Did Louis CK, Black Jeopardy, Jos. A. Bank, and Stephen A. Smith deliver?

SNL -After a few weeks off “Saturday Night Live” returned this weekend with Louis CK has a host. So how did we do? We’ll be breaking this down as the night goes on, and doing what we always do: Divide up the sketches depending on whether or not they are good, or bad. Our final grade is at the very end.

If you want to see videos of every one of the sketches, our advice is to come back to this article in the morning. We’ll have them all uploaded then!

Pre-show feeling – That this show is going to be the funniest one since the Olympics, and break the show out of its recent slump. Louis is a hilarious comic, and one of the most creative people out there. If anyone can inject some new energy into a muddling standard, it’s him.

The good

Cold Open – This skit had some really good ideas in it, starting with the fact that the entire thing was a nice spoof on President Obama doing whatever he can to promote ObamaCare. The best part of it? Kate McKinnon coming out as Justin Bieber and then kissing the President on the mouth. The biggest problem with it were some audio problems that were spattering through the broadcast for the entirety of the sketch.

Louis CK opening – Hilarious. We’re sure that some people will find it controversial (mostly Christians), but we don’t necessarily think that he was bashing the religion at all. It was more observational humor. The thing that Louis does so well is just riff and tell stories in a way that has you laughing naturally. A great, great monologue that probably ruins it for almost everyone else the rest of the season.

Jos A. Bank – The suit company is probably hating the fact that “SNL” did this sketch using their products as a glorified paper towel, but we loved every part of it. Plus, the commitment was great in making this into a cleaning commercial.

Darth Vader – As the show went south, maybe this was only really funny by comparison. But we found a few laughs in a bit about how Darth Vader was supposedly in the backside of multiple people at Mike O’Brien’s doctor’s office? We laughed a lot, but it would have been better if that end tag was cut off. We didn’t need to see the results.

Dyke & Fatz – A very funny introduction, and while we’re not quite sure that the super-short scene lived up to the hype, this was still a really good idea that caught us off guard … even if it was really relying on the same joke as what we had at the end of Black Jeopardy!, which you will see in a minute. Thank McKinnon and Aidy Bryant for making this work.

Class President Campaign – This was certainly very odd to watch Kyle Mooney’s Chris Kirkpatrick describe why he should be elected … but we rather enjoyed it. The biggest thing that this did right was just nail the accuracy of characters like this.

The bad

Black Jeopardy! – Kenan Thompson plays the game-show host well, but count us out of five minutes in a row of listening to racial stereotypes. “SNL” has really already done this sketch a number of times this year, and it wasn’t particularly hilarious then, either.

Mr. Patterson, Baby Boss – We admire the commitment that Beck Bennett puts into this characters, and there was probably a part of him who loved getting to do this with a comedy icon like Louis.

Weekend Update – The worst Update that we can remember. There was only one guest, and unless you follow ESPN regularly, you could care less about Stephen A. Smith (even if it Jay Pharoah has a good impression). There’s been too many guests lately. Also, the jokes were subpar, and there was no chemistry at all between Cecily Strong and Colin Jost. After moving forward last time, this was a big step back that made us really miss Seth Meyers.

Mr. Big Stuff – It was cool to see some of the cast members sing live, but for a sketch that had so much rehearsal, it really wasn’t that funny.  It actually ended pretty sad, when it was revealed that Louis’ character was just a sad guy who had very little in his life to celebrate.

Pajamas – We don’t know what to call this other than “odd.” What was going on with the cue cards? They caused Louis to break at the end.

Confession – A little too weird of a romantic speech for it to really work. Also, one of the only two times that we saw Bobby Moynihan all night was a sketch where he did next to nothing outside of having a fake gut.

Overall – It didn’t meet our expectations for yet another week. We’d much preferred a 90-minute stand-up special from Louis. There was nothing that clever or interesting about most of the ideas, and while the cast members did what they could, there were just so many misses late in the show that it makes the good stuff feel like a mile away. Grade: C+.

What did you think about this episode, and was there a sketch that stood out to you? Share your thoughts below, and click here to watch some other highlights of this season. You can also sign up now to get all sorts of updates from us via our CarterMatt Newsletter.

Photo: NBC



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