Saturday Night Live
“Woody Harrelson/Kendrick Lamar”
Season 40, Episode 6
Chad White, Rating: Play It Again, Haymitch
Cold Open: This cold open was better than most this season. Jay Pharaoh and Taran Killam did their best Obama and Mitch McConnell impersonations. It was a little more playful this time around. The two spoke about their differences over a few too many glasses of whiskey. Of course, things got weird.
Monologue: Another singing monologue, another few guest cameos. Can’t say I didn’t see that one coming. While Jennifer Lawrence says she can’t sing (even Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson get in on the fun) she did an okay job here alongside her cast mates. Harrelson had fun with his set as he played an acoustic guitar and was generally chill.
Front Nine: The first sketch of the night might have been one that you’ve seen already. It was the perfect send up of modern and classic TV families called “The Dudleys.” It tried to balance the old time family with newfound ideals like homosexual archetypes and different races for the children. It was satisfying in such a way that almost every element was perfect. There was even a cameo from Orange is the New Black’s Crazy Eyes. Next up was the live sketch Match’d in which Brooks Wheelan, Kyle Mooney and Killam went on an MTV styled game show w=to win host Harrelson’s daughter played by Cecily Strong. The guys spoke sexually about her whne Harrelson wasn’t around and quite nicely about her when he was there. That was a nice dynamic between the characters and made for uncomfortably spot on jokes. Next was another pretaped sketch, “A New Day,” that dealt with the legalization of carrying weed in public. Pete Davidson wrote and starred here as he and several other pot heads rejoiced in slow motion celebrating marijuana possession. This and the following Football Halftime Speech sketch had their moments but felt a little preachy. The latter sketch having Kenan Thompson come in as an obviously brain damaged NFL player seemed a little too on the nose. Next came another pretaped sketch but this time, it was the annual CD duets. You’ll be hard pressed to find this online. I had to watch it on some backwoods site. Titled “Young Tarts and Old Farts,” it coupled older singers (Elton John and Miley Cyrus) with younger ones (2 Chainz and Ariana Grande).
Weekend Update: WU gets better every week. But since this review is weeks old, I don’t think it’s fair for me to comment on any jokes that were told during it. Leslie Jones came back to the desk and it went just a well as last time. She’s at her best when she’s in front og the camera telling a story. Matthew McConaughey and Harrelson came out as well (with Killam reprising his loose and funny McConaughey role).
Back Nine: A sketch about “Old New York” starred Bobby Moynihan, Killam, Thompson and Harrelson as four angry guys that vie for the old lifestyle that the city allotted. The jokes built up to Harrleson’s character being obsessed with hardcore drugs. Sometimes, the actors broke and made everything that much better. A sketch about a “Campfire Song” followed and it was strange. Harrelson tried to get his friends (Jones, Moynihan, Vanessa Bayer and Mooney) to sing a song about God knows what. It just seemed like a template to test out some weird jokes like Harrelson throwing his guitar into the lake and stage hands tossing buckets of water onto Bayer and Mooney with someone screaming “Todd, that was your only possession.” Finally, the recurring character Sheila Sovage (Kate McKinnon) was at a bar during “Last Call” where she talked all sexy to Harrelson. Some pretty nasty stuff was said much to the dismay of Thompson who was the bar keep. The jokes hit hard and erections were lost all around.