Tonight’s Saturday Night Live was hosted by none other than Larry David, and there is a lot to like about that and that alone. The Curb Your Enthusiasm star was brilliant the last time that he hosted, and the anticipation was high from all of us here at CarterMatt that he would be brilliant once again.
You can read more about the cold open over at the link here, but the quick summation is as follows: It was funny, edgy, and the crowd at the studio didn’t seem to give it enough credit. Sometimes that happens when you’ve got a cold open — the audience hasn’t been primed enough yet.
As for the rest of the show, let’s dive right in!
Larry David monologue – Of course Larry David was going to be great, just as we knew that he was also going to push the envelope. He did that with his bit about how Harvey Weinstein was giving all Jewish people a bad name and how he wanted famous Jewish people to make him feel better about his religion. This had some good jokes. The bit about concentration camps? Well, that felt like it was a tad reaching?
After being initially criticized for the lack of Weinstein on the show after the news broke, does anyone else feel as though SNL is almost swinging the other way now?
The Price is Right – We wondered how in the world David’s Bernie was going to appear on the show tonight. Well, this was it — they shoehorned him into a random game-show sketch. While this was fun, it actually wasn’t the best impression in the segment. That went to Alec Baldwin randomly bringing back Tony Bennett for this. Also, Miley Cyrus ended up making a cameo alongside Liam Hemsworth. (Also, the Chris Hemsworth impression was ridiculous, almost like someone sucked all of the muscles out of his body.)
Sarah Huckabee Sanders press conference – We get it — SNL wants something as good as what they had with Melissa McCarthy as Sean Spicer. Aidy Bryant played a version of the new press secretary who apparently sings Demi Lovato in her head to be able to ignore serious questions. The idea here was funny, but we do think it’s harder to make a great character out of this Sanders.
Ad Council – We give the show some credit for going back in the edgy direction with David here, as his character was honored for some of his past contributions to advertising — only for it to be revealed that many of his past advertisements are incredibly offensive today. The entire joke here seemed to be that it was a different time and everyone other than the woman honoring David’s character was aware of it.
Baby Step – This was stupid. While we didn’t love the Sarah Sanders sketch it at least had potential. It was funny seeing Kenan Thompson have a meta-revelation that he is the longest-tenured cast member and he was forced to wear that stupid diaper outfit, but the idea of Larry playing the grumpy “I’m not doing this” character is something we’ve seen a trillion times already.
Weekend Update – The Donald Trump jokes were funny, but we’re not sure that any of the first segment topped Eric Trump eating Fun Dip while Mikey Day’s Donald Jr. tried to justify what was going on with the Robert Mueller investigation. Trying to watch Don Jr. talk while Eric engorged on Fun Dip was something we never thought we needed — but we now very much enjoy.
Also, tonight marked the introduction of a new character in Angel, Every Boxer’s Girlfriend from Every Boxing Movie Ever. This was surprisingly accurate and it was nice to see Heidi Gardner get an update piece. We’d say that the character was fantastic, but the sketch itself took a little bit of time in order to build. By the time we got to the Snoopy Balloon, though, we were nearly on the ground laughing.
The third segment brought back Leslie Jones to talk about baseball, which continued what is the almost-annual tradition now of World Series champions stopping by. We had the Chicago Cubs last year and this time, select Houston Astros players.
Fresh Takes – We almost feel like SNL at this point should just avoid any and all high-school related sketches since few of them rarely ever work. David and Cyrus brought a little comedy to this high-school news show, but our big takeaway from this was wondering if Miley should just be promoted to co-host for this episode.
Erika Jayne spoof – Well, this is at least who we think that this character was meant to spoof — a pop singer who performs at gay clubs who has a difficult-to-discern age and an aloof husband. It was almost like watching a Real Housewives of Beverly Hills episode with Larry David randomly thrown in there.
The best part of this sketch was about halfway through David completely broke and couldn’t get it back together — given that he’s not Ryan Gosling, a host who constantly breaks, this meant something.
Sitcom – Great use of the lighting and camera work to make this into an old-school sitcom, one that seemed to be based almost entirely on David’s character smashing things, stabbing one of the other characters, and being an alcoholic. The best part of it was probably the random sitcom cutaways to a dinosaur and some giraffes. We don’t have any idea what this was and neither did most of the people in the audience, judging from the reaction.
No doubt Larry David is a brilliant comedian and a very fun entertainer. Yet, this show was a little hit-or-miss. Much of that may have been due to elevated expectations. The first half was great, while the post-update segments were inconsistent with Fresh Takes being one we could forget about altogether.
What did you think about this weekend’s SNL episode? Share with us in the comments section below!
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