Remember last week, when I said all sorts of nice things about Charlie Day and the “Saturday Night Live” writers finding funny and original angles on topical subjects? Take all of that and make it the opposite for this weekend’s episode with Emma Stone. It’s no fault of Stone’s, who’s funny and attractive and played everything from southern beauty queen to husky-voiced creepy old lady with equal abandon. The writing just blew.
Let me put it this way: I play a game where I time how long it takes me to watch “SNL” on DVR. Most weeks, even when I hit fast-forward when a musical act or sketch loses my interest, it still takes about about 55 minutes to get through the show. This week? I did it in under 36 minutes. And it’s 36 minutes I would very much like back.
If you’re a masochist, here are a couple of barely-watchable bits from the episode I dredged up:
Cold Open: Another GOP Debate
This sketch wasn’t so much a parody of Rick Perry forgetting his talking points during a debate as it was a replay. I enjoy Bill Hader’s Perry, and there are a couple decent gags here, but this is so unimaginative that I can’t believe everyone in the writers room would be okay with this. Why not a sketch where Rick Perry forgets simple but important facts? I’d kind of like to see Bill Hader playing Rick Perry playing MacGruber.
The Devil on the Penn State Scandal
I enjoy Jason Sudeikis’s good-natured Devil, and I like the idea that even Satan is disgusted with Jerry Sandusky and everything that’s happened at Penn State. But why did Seth Meyers and “SNL” have to pussyfoot around the actual subject of young boys getting anally raped? Weekend Update airs after midnight; tackle that subject head-on. Sure, it’s going to be unsettling for some that a comedy program is addressing it so forthrightly, but actually saying “little boys got butt-raped” would make the Devil’s disgust a lot more poignant — and remind people that the horrible acts aren’t something that should be glossed over.
(For the record, this wasn’t REALLY the worst episode ever. I don’t think anyone can top the lazy writing/bad host combo that aligned when January Jones hosted.)