Saturday Night Live review: Will Ferrell, unsurprisingly, delivers season’s best show
Going into this weekend’s new Saturday Night Live there was obviously a great deal of excitement because of the presence of one Will Ferrell as host. He’s loud, irreverent, and one of the most notable past cast members of all time.
With that said, there’s a certain expectation for him to not just come out and deliver the same sort of show that any other host could do. He’s done the monologue before, both as a host and a cast member, and with that came some pretty-high expectations.
About thirty seconds into the monologue we knew that this was going to be brilliant — it was almost performance art! Will skewered first-time hosts acting so excited to be there, an that evolved into a bit where, after hitting his head on a steel beam, he stumbled around the stage and copied a number of other monologue tropes. He tried to go on the tour around the studio and sing a song — at the end of the monologue, Will was carted off on a stretcher.
Related – Read our take on the SNL cold open
Military Planes – The entire game of this sketch was that Will Ferrell’s pilot name was ClownPenis — also, he was a terrible pilot. Everyone had to say his name over and over again, while also wondering why in the world he got that name. (He wasn’t all that interested in explaining it.) There was no real point to this sketch but sometimes SNL doesn’t need one.
The House – SNL does love to do these every now and then, especially with Kyle Mooney and Beck Bennett at the center of them. These tonally aren’t our favorite sketches, mostly because the entire theme of them just seems to be watching these guys make a big deal out of guys doing really benign things. The best part of this was actually the Tracy Morgan cameo — it was only two seconds but it was still brilliant.
Pie information – Crispy pastry crust. Who knew it was going to be that hard to say? This was almost entirely performance-based. The entire premise of the sketch was watching Kate McKinnon and Will Ferrell intentionally flub their lines many times over for laughs — this should’ve gotten old about three seconds in, but it didn’t.
Flight safety videos – Gareth (Ferrell) arrived back on the flight after a lengthy sabbatical, and apparently while he was gone he decided that religion was a facade and that God wasn’t real. In the midst of a rap hosted by him and the other flight attendants, he tried his best to throw as many reminders of his position possible.
Next – Basically, this was deodorant specifically for the purpose of helping out men right before they were accused of sexual misconduct. This was a pretty solid send-up of what’s happening to some of the men that are out there, but it really didn’t generate a lot of laughter from the audience. In part, we imagine that it’s because SNL has already had some strong comedic takes on this already.
Weekend Update – While some of the opening jokes for Colin Jost and Michael Che were tremendous, nothing really matched the return of correspondent Jacob Silj (Ferrell), a classic character who screams a lot, discusses economics (sort of), and then gives WAY too much information.
The second character to come in was a new one played by Heidi Gardner in Bailey Gismert, a teen film critic who couldn’t actually articulate how she felt about any of the movies. She also messed with her hair a lot and took her time so that this character could get increasingly ridiculous as time went on.
Real Housewives – This was ridiculous and it’s actually as good of a spoof of reality TV and how some of its segments are “set up” than almost any other show that is out there. The best part of it was Ferrell threatening to hit people with his dog, which felt almost like a callback to Jack Black punting his dog in Anchorman.
The Aziz Ansari conversation – What made this such a brilliant sketch was that it would’ve been pretty easy for SNL to just come out and do a sketch that was a pretty linear discussion of some of the controversy surrounding the actor/comedian. Instead, they found an interesting way to retell some of this story through metaphor and ridiculous visual effects.
Cracker Barrel – This is the most publicity that Cracker Barrel has received since Brad’s Wife — Ferrell’s character mixed up the restaurant with Crate & Barrel and then freaked out about it on his way to destroying much of the office. Ferrell’s character spent a good bit of the episode tonight destroying things and we really didn’t mind!
Chucky Lee Bird – Ferrell’s final showcase tonight was an advertisement for some of his character’s best songs — unfortunately, most of these songs were about him being in love with teenagers. Consider this a whole sketch about how the 1950’s were a different time … but it was made all the disturbing by the fact that Chucky apparently made these in the ’80s in the 1950’s style.
What a fantastic episode this was. While not every sketch was fall-on-the-floor hilarious, we really don’t think there was a single dud in the bunch. The weakest was probably the new edition of The House, and that was shockingly early in the show.
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