Splitsider: ‘SNL Weekend Update Thursday’ II Recap
September 28, 2012 Leave a comment
In my recap of the second SNL Weekend Update Thursday special for Splitsider, I discuss the pros and cons of SNL venturing into primetime during election season before the debates.
“Last night’s second SNL Weekend Update Thursday ended a marathon of sketch comedy for the SNL cast and crew, with four live shows in 12 days. And not a moment too soon, either. I wasn’t a huge fan of NBC’s attempt to repeat its success in 2008 with two election-season primetime specials. The move failed to get the ratings the network hoped for, and instead it strained the writers and sapped political material from the better-rated Saturday episodes. Also, it seems odd that NBC would schedule the two specialsbefore the debates (traditionally SNL‘s satirical home turf), leaving us with amusing yet often generic bits that lacked the political catharsis the show is known for.
Still, the experiment wasn’t without its benefits. Like their real-life counterparts, Jay Pharoah and Jason Sudeikis were able to get in a few extra test-runs before the big debates — specifically Pharoah, whose Obama is improving in terms of pure impersonation, but still has a ways to go before he discovers a comedic voice for the character. Some new cast members also got some additional airtime, which should help ease their transition into the show. And despite how awkward it might seem for a hit-or-miss live sketch comedy show to share a lineup with tightly edited sitcoms Up All Night, Parks and Recreation, and The Office, a few extra jokes from Seth Meyers and company each week isn’t something to complain about.”
Read the full post on Splitsider.com.