Interesting fact: That’s So 2 Chainz still holds the record for the Disney show with the most bleeps.

Piers Morgan Live
Opening sketches like these tend to really not quite work out, because there’s no good reason that Chris Christie, A. Rod, and Justin Bieber should all be covered in the same sketch beyond “they would all be covered by a news program.”  There’s no flow to it, just a sense of checking items off a list.  There were some funny moments (“What I lack in journalistic integrity…,” suing Jackie Robinson), but no cohesive whole. C+

Drake’s Monologue
This was not at all a monologue, which is fine, because SNL monologues have never consistently been monologues in the first place, but this one was even less so than normal.  It was just an extra sketch in which Drake happened to be playing himself.  The premise was simple, though not super obvious, as I don’t think everyone knows that Drake is Jewish.  Nothing groundbreaking, but decent character work. B-

Hip Hop Classics: Before They Were Stars
A great impression from Kenan is a rarity, so the fact that he had FOUR impressions in one sketch could have been a cause for concern.  Luckily, we already knew his Rick Ross is solid, and the one new impression – Reginald VelJohnson – was good enough to make me wish we had gotten a full-blown Die Hard parody when Bruce Willis hosted earlier this season.  I kind of know who Sway is, and I think Kenan got him right.  His Flav was a little off (though I did laugh at “Who’s Brian?”); I think Jay would have had a better voice for that.  Oh well, you can’t win ’em all.  Anyway, I can’t think of any other sketch in SNL history in which one person played four roles.  And Kenan wasn’t the only one with multiple parts: Drake, Jay, and Sasheer all each had two roles.  Not that I’m complaining, just observing. That’s So 2 Chainz was a particular delight, with 2 Chainz’s mannerisms seamlessly interwoven into the fabric of a typical Disney Channel show.  I also loved how the cast of the Barbadian Blossom was just the same as the original, save for Rihanna replacing Mayim Bialik. And now that I know that Dr. John sang the Blossom theme song, I’ll have to get caught up on that classic sitcom. A-

Nancy Grace
Noël is too cute to play Nancy Grace.  She did have the voice down, but it was a little distracting that she didn’t also have Nancy’s features.  Anyway, the real problem with this sketch was that there wasn’t much to it.  It was a fitting non sequitur for Nancy to keep demanding her guests “think about the babies!” when their situations had nothing specifically to do with babies, but that was about all the joke was. C+

Resolution Revolution
The beat of the song was all right, but the joke was the most obvious joke possible, and even if it weren’t obvious, it still wouldn’t have been particularly funny. C-

Slumber Party
After “Twin Bed” and now this, Aidy is having a bit of a moment.  Drake was a perfect fit as the dorky handsome dad.  The explanation at the end that Melanie had been in a coma for about a decade wasn’t just random nonsense but actually fit quite well. B+

Drake performs “Started From the Bottom” and “Trophies”
The red spotlight was cool.  At the very least, it wasn’t uncool.  Neither song really got going.  This wasn’t a medley so much as it was two songs getting prematurely cut off. B

Weekend Update
-The Jokes: A lot of solid, professionally delivered material here: NSA hoping to change back to collecting information secretly, there being no right airport in Missouri, Charles E. Cheese (I especially loved the cigar), and the picture of the Doggy Cam were highlights. B+
-The Segments: -Jacqueline Bisset: This was worth doing, but it was no more than a recreation of what happened at the Golden Globes.  It probably would have worked better if they had tracked Jacqueline’s progress several more times and without announcing it ahead of time. C
-Arianna Huffington: I don’t really care what Arianna is ostensibly here to talk about; all I want is her to say things like “give me a break of the Kit-Kat bar” and “whatever, dog.” B

Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
With all the repetition, it was amazing how much momentum this sketch had.  I also felt like Drake’s character’s attempts to try to figure out anything about Rahat made this less insensitive than it might have been otherwise. B+

Detention Poetry
I like Vanessa’s character here, but unfortunately it’s not the type of good character that ensures a good sketch.  There was at least one good line. C+

Drake performs “Hold On, We’re Going Home” and, with Jhené Aiko, “From Time”
The two-song split here worked better than the first performance, as the arrangements of the songs were different than the recorded versions (well, at least it was for “Hold On” – I hadn’t heard “From Time” before, so I don’t know).  Still, while I enjoyed it, I wasn’t blown away. B

Mornin’ Miami
This being a repeat took the edge off a bit, but since each line is its own thing, there are plenty new laughs to be had.  Maybe it’s just me, but for me, “the unstoppable Ed Begley” was quite a phrase.  And I must congratulate Kate for her delivery on “I like big butts and I cannot lie … down.” B/B+

i know
Some of Kyle’s line deliveries were reminiscent of his YouTube material.  This was perfectly decent for two minutes, and had even more of a late night feel than the other Good Neighbor shorts have thus far. B

Overall
This episode had several similarities to the Miley Cyrus episode: a double-duty guest, Vanessa’s poetry teacher, Mornin’ Miami, Piers Morgan Live, and Kenan appearing as Sway.  But those were all superficial similarities.  As for the real meat of this show, Drake acquitted himself nicely.  Quite nicely, in fact.  His impressions were spot-on, and his dorky-cool vibe made him a perfect fit for the dad role in the slumber party sketch and the MC in the Indian Jones sketch.  It was also a decent debut for Sasheer Zamata, who didn’t have one standout performance, but did appear in many more sketches than most people do in their first episodes.

2 Chainz, you’re in the best sketch of the night?  They’ll let anyone in these days.

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