Cold Opening – Prayer for Ukraine
- Hoo boy, this gonna be hard for me to get through.
- The music and the general atmosphere of this cold open is very moving and is putting a lump in my throat even when I’m just typing my thoughts.
- Beautiful Ukrainian chorus that’s truly filling me with emotions and memories that I never knew I had or went through.
- Good to see Cecily and Kate here, and a moving, short, beautiful, and touching message of hope and support for the people of Ukraine. Kudos to SNL for this classy and moving open in such a troubling time.
- And one final thing: we all stand with Ukraine and its people, long it may stand free and glorious.
Rating: N/A (Segments that are non-comedic are not rated)
- John Mulaney happens to be amongst my very favorite comedians working today, so to get the opportunity to review one of his SNL stand-up monologues is a true honor for me.
- Ah, the sunflower in the background, Ukraine’s national flower. Yet another classy move by SNL in times like these.
- Already we’re getting huge laughs as John starts to speak, his natural funny delivery and demeanor makes what he says twice as funny.
- John: “After a complicated year it’s great to be in a place that emphasizes sobriety and mental health”
- I’m surprised how open John is in regards to his past addiction problems, and a funny story regarding his intervention. Brave for him to do that.
- John: ”Wouldn’t happen on my watch!”
- I’m loving the how John is seamlessly transitioning between his jokes effortlessly.
- Loving his story about wanting to block his drug dealer, and how sensitive his drug dealer was about him.
- John: ”No! I’m a painter, we talked about this!”
- Fantastic conclusion to his drug dealer story, a classic Mulaney bit.
- John, on his newborn kid: “He’s a pretty cool guy for someone who can’t vote” and “His favorite pacifier just got recalled” are not only funny Mulaney-esque lines, but also quite endearing and present an even more personal image of John.
- Great monologue, as Mulaney’s usually are. There’s not an ounce of fat on these jokes, just pure fun, sharpness, quick & seamless transitions between jokes, effortless punchlines that just keep coming left and right, and this is why John will always remain one of my absolute favorite stand-up comedians.
- Right out of the gate, I’m loving this random, absurdist, creative premise.
- Surprised to see Melissa continuing to have some actual airtime, too bad this is a dull, straight role for her, so nothing really changed for her that much so far into the episode.
- John is playing his role as the judge in the most Mulaney way possible, he’s NOT putting any effort in his characterization and I LOVE that.
- By the way, great makeup on John.
- Love John’s description of Kenan’s lawyer character.
- I see the show is making Cecily feel right at home with another utility role for her, she manages not to have a suffocating presence on the show, and pieces like this and others show us how valuable Cecily is when used properly.
- Loving the visual of the shredded newspapers.
- John: ”Bring judge baby” well John…
- A fun ending, and an overall funny, decent, creative sketch that’s right up my alley of humor.
Blue River Dog Food
- A spiritual sequel to the fantastic skit from Seth Rogen’s episode from season 39!
- Is Cecily supposed to be playing the same character she played in the classic? It seems like it though.
- Oh, I love the very sudden dramatic, serious tone shift to this commercial.
- Heidi is such a perfect scene partner to Cecily in this, as both have very strong dramatic acting chops.
- As both a cat and dog owner and lover, the escalation in this is done flawlessly. I had conversations with people that sound almost verbatim to this.
- John’s ”Fur baby” description is hilarious.
- Funny dramatic acting from Cecily when she claims that the dog can’t walk.
- Solid supporting performance from John, and Heidi is her usual reliable, consistent, solid self in this piece.
- A funny, yet somewhat unsettling bit with Cecily trying to be the ”voice” of Heidi’s dog.
- Very funny ending with John being ready to make love to Cecily, again adding to the subtle creepy, absurdist, and unsettling semi-dramatic vibe of this commercial.
- Overall, this was simply great. An outstanding Cecily Strong showcase, and yet another gem of a commercial from this era, showing us once more how fantastic it generally is when it comes to pieces like this.
- A needless rehash of the solid sketch from Will Ferrell’s S43 episode.
- Much like how the first one was a discussion about the #MeToo movement and sexual harassment in general, this one is about COVID and vaccines.
- This sketch, while well-performed by the cast, well-written with some solid lines, it feels like a pale imitation of the original. We could’ve had a solid satirical take on COVID and the discussion around the vaccines and the restrictive measures in combating the pandemic in a different setting and format.
- An ok visual of Heidi using Thanos’ glove to escape the discussion.
- Good laughs from the increasing tension, being well-performed from the cast yet again.
- Overall this was decent with good and relatable satire. I only wished for a different setting instead of a rehash, in an era that thankfully embraced more creativity and originality than the preceding boring by-the-numbers one.
Please Don’t Destroy – Good Variant
- Great to see our second consecutive PDD piece, those are always winners.
- A very creative concept as usual for these pieces, and a unique usage of John and his always-reliable and funny delivery.
- A welcomed cameo from Paul Rudd.
- Great to see Sarah in another one of these, especially after how she stole the show in the Calling Angie sketch. And not to mention how she quickly became PDD’s leading lady on the show, and deservedly so as her energy is perfect for their style.
- Ok, a very random Al Roker cameo. Yet, his likable presence is adding to the humor and general silliness of this piece.
- A hilarious image of Dr. Fauci hooking up with Saweetie.
- Sarah: ”Martin: You’re positive… For anal worms!” Such a Sarah line and, as expected, is delivered flawlessly by her.
- Silly and fun bit about Pokémon storming the capitol, and helping to pass a legislation that gives free Xbox’s to all Americans.
- The usual fun, quick, and solid PDD piece.
- Steve! Candice! Great to see them in our obligatory Five-Timers sketch.
- Great to see Paul Rudd here, and this is coming from a person that never liked a single episode that he hosted. I do like him as a person though, nothing is personal in my critique of his lousy episodes.
- Some funny bitter comments from Paul regarding his botched entry into the club, and I did like how he claimed that his episode was supposed to be better than John’s.
- Boy, is Candice ever fixated on those cue cards.
- No comment from me in regards to Tina’s umpteenth cameo, at least it isn’t as self-satisfied and smug as her unbelievably cringe-inducing and self-amused cameo from Jonah Hill’s episode from season 44.
- Elliott Gould! Fantastic seeing him back after such a long absence.
- Some weird camera movement when Conan shows up, new director greenness?
- Ah, Conan is being his usual goofy, lovable, hilarious, legendary self here.
- A great ending with Conan’s LFNY, and I loved the detail with the close-up on him as he says it.
- A very funny dig at NBC airing the Beijing Winter Olympics
- Loved Che’s joke about his Ukrainian ”friend”.
- A particularly dark joke about prince Andrew, and the audience is pretty hot, as they usually are whenever Update is on.
- Wow! Update is over already! This has to be the shortest Update in about many years (normal ones that is).
- This is our first featureless Update since the Steve Martin February 4, 2006 episode.
- Well, at least the jokes and commentary from Colin and Michael was the usual solid stuff (while I’d admit I did underrate the two previous ones by half-a-star, some of their commentaries didn’t work for me).
- Ah, and now it’s time for our annual Mulaney musical epic. I’ve always enjoyed these, especially the first three which I find to be major highlights not only in their own episodes, or seasons, but in the current 2014-present SNL era. These pieces are ambitious, fun, energetic, and are a true love message to theatre and musicals in general. I do believe that one of the most memorable aspects that this era will be remembered by is these grand Mulaney-led musical epics. Hopefully this one is an improvement over the also-solid-but-seemingly-under-rehearsed musical from last season. That one is the only instalment of that wouldn’t have gotten get a 5/5 rating from me, after three consecutive strong ones.
- An expected setting for the eventual musical, with it being in the subway.
- A kinda lame opening joke, with even Andrew’s reliable delivery being unable to elevate it that much.
- Great to see Melissa in the musical sketch, as she is specialized in musical comedy.
- Ah, here comes Kenan in order to begin our musical epic. Of course, Kenan comes off fantastic in here, charismatic, likable, and filled with professionalism and reliable presence.
- By the way, the set design in this, as well as the others is simply FANTASTIC.
- Great to see Cecily here, as her presence was missed in the previous one, and her singing here is FAR more welcome than in those singing lounge skits.
- The F line gave me a good laugh, due to Andrew’s reliable delivery.
- Happy to see Punkie in this, and like always, she’s coming off lovable and funny.
- Alex looks quite pleasing to my eyes in this, and his quick number came off fun and energetic.
- Here comes Kate with her usual sketch-stealing musical number.
- Kate’s beautiful singing voice is always underrated.
- Kate: ”I am liquid on the floor, am I pee or Mountain Dew?”
- Solid inclusion of LCD Soundsystem in this, and they’re coming of fun here.
- I would’ve groaned at the sight of Aidy in that getup, yet she’s coming of charming as usual and performing this well.
- A very fun ending visual with the cast and chorus singing as Aidy motions herself to the tune and throws those fishes, a catchy final musical number as a capper to a very fun musical epic.
- Overall, this was a lot of fun, and a step up from the also-solid-yet-unfocused-and-lethargic one from Mulaney’s latest hosting stint.
- I don’t know how I would rank this one as I love the first three so much and truly consider them to five-star material, this one is a step up from last season’s yet it doesn’t match up to, let’s say, Airport Sushi or Bodega Bathroom. I still liked it a lot and it was a blast to watch live, so my rating is half-a-star higher than the previous musical due to the focus in presentation and the stronger material.
Behind the Slime
- Holy shit! Is this a You Can’t Do That on Television parody?! They are nailing how the set looks, the general atmosphere and clothing, it’s all SPOT-ON.
- This is bringing up to me so many fond childhood memories when I used to watch the reruns of YCDTOT back in the mid 2000s.
- Ah, Alex and Chris are the perfect two anchors to lead this sketch, I wish we could’ve seen them as a duo more often.
- Sarah’s continuing her solid first season with her fun performance and energy here.
- A guilty laugh from Sarah’s homophobic insult at John, and I’m loving how subtly dark this is getting.
- A huge laugh from the visual of the slime getting all over John and Sarah, great reaction from both.
- Ah, like the total sketch-saving and sketch-enhancing professional that he is, Chris handles his moustache blooper with total ease and NO BREAKING. Hear that Aidy?
- Mikey and Kyle are always eerily convincing and lots of fun as teenagers.
- Once more, very funny visual of the slime getting all over Mikey and Kyle nonstop, and this causes another professional like Chloe to nearly break for a second, but like a pro she only cracks a smile for a bit. I have yet to see her full-on break character, and I truly don’t think that will ever happen.
- Fun ending. I like that this sketch felt quick, got to the joke, heightened it, and then we’re out of the sketch. I won’t be that surprised if this one is written by some of the new writers, as we’ve been getting some well-timed and well-paced skits (the Willem Dafoe episode is a prime example of that). So far, that’s good for me, and it signals yet again to us that transition and change is what makes SNL the comedy institution that it is.
- A random rehash of the classic Cha Cha Slide sketch from John’s fantastic hosting stint from season 44.
- The usual warm slice-of-life feel from this sketch, and I love how it highlights interracial relationships in a lighthearted and realistic manner.
- Great chemistry and back-and-forth between John and Ego.
- And we’re out of the sketch. A solid way to end such a solid and consistent episode. As this was a good, funny, and realistic slice-of-life sketch.
- Lovely to see the Ukrainian chorus brought back on stage for the goodnights.
- My goodness! Is this Aristotle’s only appearance? and in the goodnights? Don’t waste this man’s great talents SNL! [ADDENDUM: According to Jesse Nathan, Aristotle was in the Subway Churro musical with James and Sarah, but his spot was poorly-lit so I didn’t recognize him well].
Segments Ranked From Best to Worst
Blue River Dog Food
Behind the Slime
Please Don’t Destroy – Good Variant
- A perfect episode. Pretty much my favorite of the season, and an episode that John really needed after two that ranged from good (S46) to somewhat shaky (S45). It felt like John had his heart in this one, due to again being in a better place.
- This episode had a standout pretape, great monologue, solid and unique sketch concepts that showcased many of the cast (even when I would’ve loved a newbies-led sketch with John) was less formulaic, unpredictable, and avoided taking the lazy route unlike some segments in his last two. An episode with an overall consistent and fun-quality throughout, more than a pleasant surprise for me and many others (I cannot WAIT when fellow reviewer and frequent commenter Jesse Nathan calculates the average for this episode).
- This is one of Cecily’s better nights in this late stage in her shaky tenure, and her best since Adam Driver’s legendary episode from season 45 (my personal all-time favourite SNL episode). This episode featured her usual professional-but-fun presence. Also, it showed us the best way to utilize her great talents, not in those boring vanity pieces, but in anchoring and being a ”glue” to ensemble skits.
- Oscar Isaac hosts with the return of Charli XCX as the musical guest.
12 Replies to “February 26, 2022 – John Mulaney / LCD Soundsystem (S47 E13)”
Cold Open N/A (but if I could *****)
Monkey Judge ***
Blue River ** (talk about a huge difference lol)
Covid Dinner Discussion **½
Please Don’t Destroy ***** (Roker randomly coming in was hilarious)
Five Timers Club ***** (I’m surprised this isn’t five stars and that you didn’t bring up that unique transition)
Weekend Update ****
Nickelodeon Show *** (I love YCDTOTV kinda wish kenan was in this for obvious reasons)
Cupid Shuffle ****
CFT: Podcast Set ***½
CFT: Family Band ***½
How this episode stacks up against the preceding one (Willem DaFoe):
A slight step up
How I put each episode from best to worst now
John Mulaney (E13)
Jason Sudeikis (E4)
Willem Dafoe (E12)
Keiran Culkin (E5)
Rami Malek (E3)
Will Forte (E11)
Simu Liu (E7)
Owen Wilson (E1)
Paul Rudd (E9) for new sketches
Billie Eilish (E8)
Ariana DeBose (E10)
Jonathan Majors (E6)
Kim Kardashian West (E2)
You forgot the Subway Churro sketch.
Subway Churro ****½
“This is our first featureless Update since the Steve Martin February 4, 2006 episode.” Actually, it was the Season 37 Maya Rudolph episode.
“Is this Aristotle’s only appearance? and in the goodnights? Don’t waste this man’s great talents SNL!” Actually, no. He was one of the rabbis in the Subway Churro sketch. It’s just that SNL didn’t bother to put any lighting on him.
Thanks! I did not even recognize the newbies that well behind John (aside from JAJ). An interesting usage of them. I guess that it’s partly because how sleepy I was while frantically writing the review.
And as usual, here are your rating averages:
Wilson – 7.1
Kardashian – 5.0
Malek – 7.6
Sudeikis – 7.7
Culkin – 6.5
Majors – 5.8
Liu – 6.3
Eilish – 6.3
Rudd – 6.0
DeBose – 7.9
Forte – 5.7
Dafoe – 6.8
Mulaney – 8.0
Overall Average (so far): 6.7
Thanks once again! A pretty solid average so far, which I shouldn’t be as shocked about it. This season in general is very well-received by both fans and critics so far. Also, I would assume the average will most likely slightly decrease by the season’s end, betting on an average of 6.4-6.5 which will make it about or the same as Season 40. And that seems about right to me. I’m predicting a string of average-but-decent episodes in the coming months, with barely any bad segments, and nice, comfortable feel to the whole show throughout the night. I’m gonna assume that the next two shows will be good, yet not strong, unless I’m surprised and taken back by an episode’s strength (Ariana DeBose) or shocked at the wasted potential (Will Forte). One final thing Jesse, what’s your own average for the season so far?
My average so far is 6.3
What’s mine (not including or including cft sketches you decide)
I can’t fully calculate yours.
Because you didn’t give your ratings for the first six episodes.