'SNL' Recap: Jeremy Renner And Maroon 5

Everything we all said when Daniel Craig hosted SNL in October is true about Jeremy Renner, too. Action movie star, never flexed his comedy chops before, etc. The two big differences, though: Craig had something to promote (seriously, why was Renner chosen? His next movie, Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, doesn’t come out for another two months), and where Craig’s episode was decent, Renner’s was…not. It was bad.

Renner was nervous and flustered and clearly reading off the cards most of the night, and the technical malfunction with his piano during the monologue didn’t do him any favors; the only real pleasant surprise of the evening was that he can sing, unless I’m misremembering a Cannibal Corpse song in Dahmer. Renner gave it his all, but unfortunately, when it comes to comedy, he doesn’t have much to give.

The Town is still awesome, though.

Cold Open

The first of many David Petraeus-themed bits, none of which really landed. The cold open may have been the worst of the bunch — the joke revealed itself about 30 seconds in, and save for a quick sight gag of Fred Armisen’s creepy smirk, it never progressed beyond its unfunny concept.

Tourism Ad

Funny idea (especially for someone who grew up in a small town), decent execution; I just wish it would have been a little weirder. The specifics were on the nose (the former Kmart that’s now a closed Michaels, the old high school friend working at the local movie theater, etc.), but “Tourism Ad” felt like it could have gone further.

The Californians

That’s my official review.

Page 2

The Situation Room

The first decent sketch…still wasn’t great, but it did produce the earliest non-nervous laughs of the night, with CNN’s habit of reusing the same piece of footage over and over again and Renner playing the self-proclaimed mayor of Tampa, Derek “Fat Deuce” Derek as the two highlights.

The Stand Off

Throwing in Adam Levine as Adam Levine was a nice touch to this well-executed digital short.

Weekend Update Katt Williams

According to Twitter, Jay Pharoah pulled a Jenny Slate and said “f*ck,” but I didn’t hear it. Did you? Either way, Katt Williams is definitely the most unhinged castmember from Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore, which is saying something. That Bette Midler is one crazy bitch.

Weekend Update Chris Christie

Very impressive comic timing on the part of fleece-enthusiast Chris Christie, who, sitting next to Seth Meyers, looks like he could have eaten him. I’m disappointed the governor didn’t quote Jersey’s other poet laureates: “I did your partner cause she’s hot as a baker/Cause I’m Naughty by Nature, not cause I hate cha!”

The Avengers

What the what? This is the reason why SNL should never go big — there were too many moving parts in their Avengers parody for things to go smoothly, and in fact, none of them did. Like when the giant Hulk hand came on-screen, you could see someone holding the prop. That kind of stuff. Also, were those children or little people fighting the Hulk? Just, no. (Jason Sudeikis is the poor man’s RDJ, though.)

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