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Old 05-06-2019, 03:15 PM   #1
TMC
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Default SNL mostly avoids politics for Adam Sandler's first time hosting

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/05/a...dler-host.html

Saturday Night Live set the mood for its first Sandler-hosted episode by avoiding politics in the cold open, opting instead for a Family Feud sketch pitting Game of Thrones vs. Avengers. Joined by Chris Rock, Sandler commemorated his 1995 firing from SNL after five seasons with the "I Was Fired" song. "I guess NBC had enough Crazy Spoon Head and the songs I sang on the news," he sang. "...NBC said I was done. Then I made over $4 billion at the box office, so I guess you could say I won." This wasn't Sandler's first time back at SNL. He opened a 2002 episode with "The Hanukkah Song III." He also was part of SNL's 40th anniversary celebration in 2015. Sandler's episode contained several Sandler-centric sketches including "Sandler Family Reunion" with Kristen Wiig and Sandler impersonator Jimmy Fallon. Sandler also reprised his Opera Man character for "Weekend Update," using the appearance to roast President Trump, Joe Biden and his former Funny People co-star Seth Rogen. "Operaman making a joke about me is maybe the most amazing thing that’s ever happened to me. Holy sh*t what an insane honor," tweeted Rogen. Referring to Robert Smigel, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog tweeted back at Rogen: "The hand up my ass helped write it, now that’s an honor." Sandler closed out the show with a touching performance in tribute to the late Chris Farley. "Life ain't the same without you," he sang. "If we make enough noise, maybe he'll hear us."

Adam Sandler is the latest SNL alum to bring the "lifeless" show a "refreshing jolt"

Sandler was the third Saturday Night Live alum to host this season, after Seth Meyers and John Mulaney, and he provided "a refreshing jolt for a show that has otherwise felt a little lifeless," says David Sims. "Saturday Night Live has not had the strongest season; these past few years have not been nearly as catastrophic as the 1993–95 run that saw NBC actually contemplate ending the show, but they’ve carried the familiar whiff of creative stagnation that often comes at the end of any era for the show, good or bad," says Sims. "Kate McKinnon, the one indisputable star currently aboard, is nearing the end of her contract; Kenan Thompson, arguably the greatest veteran in SNL history, could finally be ready to move on; and the head writers Colin Jost and Michael Che have been hosting 'Weekend Update' together for five years now, to mostly poor critical notices. The show’s political material, which should be thriving in such a news-heavy era, is mostly forgettable and heavily reliant on surprise guest stars. Sandler’s material this week was mostly warmhearted and pleasant, very reliant on nostalgia, and unsurprisingly geared toward longtime fans. It made for a diverting episode, one heavy on the chuckles and light on big laughs, and also largely lacking in hot-button material." Sims adds: "Saturday Night Live is not quite as old as Sandler himself, but it’s close—it’s about to wrap up its 44th season, and Lorne Michaels is probably getting ready to search for a new generation of cast members. So the show can be forgiven for taking on a similarly retrospective mood when an old favorite drops by. Still, such visits give it the vibe of a dusty old museum, the feel of a series defined by its history rather than its ability to capture the cultural mood of the moment. Decades of reinvention suggest that SNL will once again become the thriving topical powerhouse it’s been so many times before, but as Sandler recalled, that transformation often comes hand in hand with a big shake-up. Perhaps the next one is on the horizon." ALSO: SNL ties its best ratings of the season with Sandler hosting.

SNL seems like it's throwing in the towel when it comes to political satire

The Family Feud cold open to Adam Sandler's episode, pitting Game of Thrones vs. Avengers, felt like a surrender, says Dennis Perkins. "If the response is that SNL’s political courage and sophistication has always been more pose than practice, I can’t argue that much," says Perkins. "But SNL has a platform, and one that it’s courted, developed, and climbed to intermittent heights of ratings (and even critical) success. Basically, throwing in the towel when you’re in the position to most directly affect a sitting president (who you arguably helped elect) is cowardly. Or lazy. Or cynical. Anything but ambitious. So starting off the episode with a head-fake toward another political sketch before jerking back to safely mediocre ground is your way of saying that all this heat is either too much, or too hard? Fair enough. But trundling out one of your most reliably unimpressive bits of quick-hit, uninspired celebrity impressions in its place is an act of contempt for anyone who thinks having a 90-minute stage of live TV satire involves some f*cking effort. And courage. The sketch was what it was. Cute. Disposable. Filled with lackluster impersonations and easy, crowd-targeted references... Nobody’s forcing SNL to do political satire. But if the mission going forward is to safely backpedal on politics, then you’d better be a whole lot funnier and more original as a sketch comedy show, because right now, you’re courting irrelevance on both fronts."

Last edited by TMC; 05-07-2019 at 12:42 AM.
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Old 05-13-2019, 09:33 AM   #2
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I adored it. I watched it about 6 times. I haven't liked any SNL show so much in years.
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Old 05-13-2019, 01:13 PM   #3
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I don't even watch SNL anymore except for the cold opening sketch to see them make fun of trump. Since they didn't do one this time, I just skipped the whole episode in general.
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Old 05-13-2019, 01:39 PM   #4
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I may watch this ep...dodging politics is a good thing since most of it is one-sided anymore....
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