Saturday Night Live

Season 31 Episode 8

Alec Baldwin/Shakira

0
Aired Saturday 11:30 PM Dec 10, 2005 on NBC
8.0
out of 10
User Rating
50 votes
4

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Live from New York, it's... Alec Baldwin! Sketches include "Saddam's Cell," "Tylenol BM," "Face Transplant," "The O'Reilly Factor," "Celebrity Mugshot Poker" (cartoon), "Brokeback Goldmine," "The Tony Bennett Show," "Carol at Bowl-a-Rama," "The Man Who Married a Hot Dog," "Medicare," and "Santa's Workshop." Shakira performed "Don't Bother" and "La Tortura" (acoustic mix) with Alejandro Sanz.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Easy as A-B-C!

    6.0
    A Review by “HelloStuart,” Amateur Critic and Milquetoast



    For the past of couple of weeks, it’s dawned on me that maybe Andy Samberg isn’t working out. I know that seems a bit harsh for a cast member that’s only been around for seven episodes, but his lack of lines and overall screen time is either evidence of the fact that he’s not being used to his full potential or that the producers overestimated his abilities when he was hired three months ago. Heck, even the gone-and-forgotten Rob Riggle had more screen time than Samberg at this point last season, and look what happened to him. Maybe in a few years we’ll see Samberg achieve some sort of success and we’ll all look back and laugh at this, not unlike Ben Stiller and Sarah Silverman, but right now he’s 16th on the cast depth chart.



    This week’s master of ceremonies is practically a legend amongst SNL hosts, a name that personifies all that is good and funny amongst its kind: Alec Baldwin. This is a whopping twelfth go-around for the one-time Oscar nominee, whose daringness and civil attitude towards comedy has endeared him to cast and crew alike. This week’s musical guest is Shakira, who is also no new arrival to SNL but obviously hasn’t left as much of an impression as Baldwin.



    And now, the sketch-by-sketch analysis:



    COLD OPENING: Somewhere in the brutal deserts of Iraq, Saddam Hussein (Alec) whines about walking up four flights of stairs and a general feeling of loneliness in his prison cell as his stoic guard (FA) reluctantly listens. Even though the Ramsey Clark jab was a bit harsh, it was fun watching Saddam being portrayed as a neurotic shyster.



    MONOLOGUE: I can’t say I’ve seen too many monologues that consisted of clip montages, but this one definitely covered all the bases, even if Baldwin is technically two hosting stints from what would be a “real” milestone. Alec’s commentary was surprisingly tongue-in-cheek, and even an unexpected cameo by Tim Meadows didn’t hurt the momentum.



    “Tylenol BM”: If your life is a never-ending swirl of pressure and responsibility, then maybe you need this new medicine that lets you lose control of your bladder while you sleep. Plus, it’s a lot easier to clean up than a wet dream.



    “Face Transplant”: A nerve-wracked husband (Alec) watches as his wife receives a controversial new surgery after surviving a hate crime, only to reject one new face after another. Tina (in a rare sketch performance) comes off as stiff in the role of the levelheaded surgeon, but Alec’s irrational despair alone cannot carry this wayward stab at topical humor.



    “The O’Reilly Factor”: Pitiful Billy (DH) rolls through a discussion on torture with John McCain (CP) and gay rights with Barney Frank (Alec) while continuing to show a lack of regard towards fact-checking. Though I’m warming up to Darrell’s O’Reilly impression, I’d much rather watch “Hardball.” You can interpret that statement any way you want to.



    SMIGELTOON: It’s time for “Celebrity Mugshot Poker,” utilizing Terry Gilliam-style animation to depict Nick Nolte, James Brown, and others playing some Texas hold-um to the commentary of Dave Foley and Phil Gordon (as themselves).



    “Brokeback Goldmine”: Spoofing a new Heath Ledger movie (though it could easily be confused with a Ewan McGregor movie from eight years ago), two old prospectors (Alec, WF) try to hide their love for each other during a gold rush. The standard gay sex jokes that we’ve all come to expect ensue.



    MUSICAL PERFORMANCE: There’s not a whole lot of hip-shaking in “Don’t Bother,” but doesn’t have any scruples towards tugging at her shirt. Is it me, or did anyone else notice that when Shakira sings in English, she sounds a little like Cher?



    WEEKEND UPDATE: After kicking off Update with the customary Bush-bashing jokes, Tina introduces several audition tapes for Peter Jenning's replacement, which mostly serves to take a few riffs on Jane Pauley (KW) and veteran newsman “Stan Mather” (DH). After making a left-field Dick Cheney joke and a deliciously crude one-liner allegedly written by Tina’s dad, we turn to Black Muslim stereotype Sharif Omar Muhammad (KT) and his deceiving attempt at eradicating prejudice in society through ventriloquism.



    “The Tony Bennett Show”: No doubt about it, Alec does a killer Bennett impression, but this sketch was old hat. A chat with Dick Cheney (DH) about foreign and domestic policy turns into a holiday sing-along, demonstrating that this recurring sketch is built upon some of template.



    “Bowl-a-Rama”: Oh crud, it’s Carol again. In a slight rewrite of “her” appearance in the Armstrong/Crow episode, our slovenly sex bomb (HS) continues to drink and inhale profusely on a blind date, this time at a bowling alley. Watching this sketch made me wonder what would be worse: including this on the “The Best of Horatio Sanz” DVD or turning this ghastly skit into a feature-length movie? The decision is yours, America!



    “The Man Who Married a Hot Dog”: An urban legend is realized when Jeremy Connors (Alec) turns a childhood dream into a bizarre reality, creating a half-human, half-frankfurter nuclear family. The sketch plays off like a lame family sitcom from the 1950’s, though there is glimmer of hope in that Samberg not only found some juicy screen time but also found a role that didn’t seem entirely demeaning.



    “Medicare”: A spokesperson (JS) grooves along to Social Security’s new computer-based format, demonstrating how perfect this system is for our technologically-impaired elderly. It was clever, but does fall into the aging “computers-turn-old-people-into-nincompoops” gag byline.



    MUSICAL PERFORMANCE: An acoustic version of “La Tortura” with Iberian pop star Alejandro Sanz finally puts a little wiggle in Ms. Ripoll’s patootie.



    “Santa’s Workshop”: In another movie spoof (the ABC mnemonic device should be a dead giveaway), a dynamic corporate hardhead (Alec) tries to knock some sense into some whiny elves (RD, SM, AP) but ultimately comes off as a brash bully. The “happy” ending in which the elves get holiday bonuses felt a bit forced, but there’s plenty more to be worried about with this tepid sketch.



    What can I say? The man’s a genius. Though the sketches were once again hit-and-miss, Baldwin carried the show on his shoulders and savored every second of it, continuing the pattern of solid hosts in imperfect shows; he even developed a hint of chemistry with Amy Poehler could potentially equal or even supersede her frequent collaborations with Seth Meyers. As for Shakira- though I expected a little bit more out of her, her lightly choreographed performance was easy on the eyes and ears.



    Sketches That Will Probably Be Edited in Repeats: “Don’t Bother,” “Bowl-a-Rama,” “The Man Who Married a Hot Dog,” and “Santa’s Workshop.”



    Next Week: It’s about time we had some more returning hosts; Jack Black makes his third go-around as emcee, which means he’ll probably surpass Steve Martin around 2021 or so. Rock legend Neil Young is the musical guest for the fourth time.moreless
  • Alec Baldwin hosts for his 12th time. Catina Boy sketch not present.

    8.7
    Twelve times as host now. This should be great. Shakira is the music guest.



    Cold Opening (Iraqi Compound) - Alec Baldwin plays Saddam Hussein. Fred Armisen plays the guard. He complains about the flights. He complains about the 4 flights. Ramsey Clark's name and client list are mentioned "Having Ramsey Clark as your lawyer is like going to a bar with Tom Sizemore." Baldwin recites the famous sentence: "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!"



    Monologue - "Only Steve Martin has hosted more times than me." Steve first hosted in 1976. Baldwin's first time was in 1990. John Goodman hosted 12 times. Tom Hanks has hosted 7 times but he's too busy. David Spade's advice took him 3 more shows. Who could forget the Schweaty balls. He noticed Tim Meadows was gone during his 9th or 10th show. Tim Meadows makes a cameo appearance. ("I'm still in the cast, I haven't had any sketches in 6 years but I'm back. This monologue has broken my slump.") He brings up his 11th time where he mentions something.



    Commercial - Baldwin does a commercial for Tylenol BM. Rachel is also in that commerical.



    Face Transplant - Tina makes a rare sketch appearance. This deals with the recent face transplant. Looks like Seth Meyers plays the wife. Baldwin complains about the swelling. Baldwin asks for forgiveness when he wants to body reject the face. Rachel plays the 2nd time that the face has a transplant. Baldwin pulls the tube. The next face belongs to Kenan Thompson. The doctor calls him a racist. The very next day, the face belongs to Amy Poehler. He grabs Amy's you know what. Apparently, his wife died.



    Fox News - Bill O'Reilly played by Darrell Hammond. The subject is torture. "Geneva Conventions should stay in Convention." Joining is John McCain (Chris Parnell or Jason Sudeikis). O'Reilly says he is a convicted felon. He calls him a racist for bringing up the fact he was captured by the Vietnamese. Congressman Barney Frank is played by Alec Baldwin. Bill asks him to use his real voice. "Secular progressive movement." Frank applauds Parliament. O'Reilly brings up the band headed by George Clinton. Frank: "You are wrong in so many ways I am actually concerned for you, Bill." O'Reilly accuses Peter Jackson of not being creativity. Arvin Ejaz of Cincinnati? James Ahearn of Olney, MD? I wonder if these people are real. That second letter was hilarious.



    Robert Smigel Cartoon (Celebrity Mugshot Poker) - Quite a few celebrities and non-celebrities. Tom Delay is playing for the Very Good Cause foundation. The Carolina Panthers cheerleaders folded and take a 4th bathroom break. This sketch is not very funny at all.



    Brokeback Goldmine - This features Alec Baldwin and Will Forte. Rachel Dratch is also in this sketch. Almost reminds me of the Cantina boy sketch. I hope I have the title right. Definitely a trailer for a show.



    Shakira sings one of her songs.



    Weekend Update - I expect a tribute to Richard Pryor. Starts off with a Bush joke and a Cheney joke. Iran plans to build some nuclear power plants apparently. Hussein joke. World News Tonight and SNL has the audition tapes featuring Wolf Blitzer (Chris Parnell), Jane Pauley (Kristen Wiig), Stan Mather (Darrell Hammond), Stuart Scott (Finesse Mitchell), Ty Pennington (Seth Meyers), and Gene Shalit (Horatio Sanz). The National Zoo has seen increase in sales and the panda's name Ka-Ching Ka-Ching. 32JJ is a record. Rumsfeld advised Army to not give enough eqiuipment for the football. CBJB's owes money for rent. Cruise and Holmes expecting a boy. Dolphins depressed in Honduras? Apparently Tina's father, Doug, contributed a joke. Kenan Thompson plays Sharif Omar Mohammed. "Free Tookie!" Britain has introduced a musical sandwich. Starbucks violation? Amy plans to start up Dunkin Dog Nuts. Weight loss spa in Hong Kong. Now the tribute to Richard Pryor almost thirty years to the date of his first apperance on SNL



    Tony Bennett Show - Baldwin's recurring character and he sings as usual. His first guest is Dick Cheney (Darrell Hammond). They both are singing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" with the fake smile as usual. Interesting rendition though. I've got no comment on the song though. I will say I prefer Adam Sandler singing...



    Carol - Baldwin, Amy, Jason Sudeikis. Horatio Sanz as the recurring character, Carol. This sketch will not be on when E! reruns it. I really am not a fan of this recurring sketch. It's not funny.



    Jeremy Conners - What's up with Alec Baldwin married to a hot dog. He mentions Pat Morita died. Amy Poehler is half-dog, half-girl. Andy Samberg is half-dog, half-man. How a man can have sex with a hot dog is beyond me.



    Medicare - Jeremy Sudeikis starts this one out. He's singing too. This deals with prescription drugs. Nice PSA sketch.



    Shakira sings again.



    Santa's Workshop - Amy, Rachel, Seth, Fred, and Alec are in this one. They get fired, wait that was a false alarm. They get holiday bonuses in the end.moreless
  • Oh, the torture. No. Don’t bother, because I will die. Don’t bother to impress me with this average episode. I’m not a fool. Objection, tango. Whenever, wherever. Eyes like yours. Poem to a horse. (Insert Shakira song here)moreless

    7.2
    This week marked the 12th time hosting for actor Alec Baldwin, and the second time as musical guest for my favorite singer, Shakira. The season is still showing a slump, with each week getting seemingly worse than the last. But I was glad they FINALLY got someone I liked on. Maybe soon they can get Orlando, or Dominic, or Nicole, or someone else from LOST to host, or appear. I’m not picky. But I will jump right into the episode, with that being said.



    HOST:

    This week’s host was 12 timer Alec Baldwin. In the past, he has played some really great characters. This week was, well, different. He played mediocre characters, but did do a good job playing them. He is still good on the show. His monologue consisted of a showing of old skits he was in, which was actually enjoyable. And in it, it was good to see Tim Meadows, who is pry being called Finnesse, or vice versa. B+



    MUSICAL GUEST:

    In the summary, I had many of her songs in it. I love her songs, and she is my favorite singer. I am talking about Colombian singer Shakira. She performed her current song, “Don’t Bother,” from her current CD, Oral Fixation, Volume 2, and “La Tortura” (The Torture, for those of you who don’t speak Espanol) featuring Alejandro Sanz (no relation to Horatio) from her summer CD Fijacion Oral, Volume 1. What are both songs about? Adultery! Maybe that is why I love them. Find an English translation to find out more. I won’t get into it. A++++



    The Sketches:



    -Saddam’s Cell: Saddam is lonely in his cell,. And he has to walk up all those stairs. Poor guy. What did he do to deserve this? Oh yes, now I remember: he committed genocide. Hey, the skit was kind of funny. C



    -Tylenol BM: Well, this is disgusting. No one should take this unless they don’t share a bed with anyone. Mostly, it freezes your brain, and you go in the middle of the night. They’ve had past funny medicines, but not this. D



    -Face Transplant: So in this little number, Alec’s character has a wife who was attacked by wolves, and each time, he gets a new face, he is not impressed. I wonder, during a face transplant, is the donor dead or what? Anyway, like in the last medical skit he was in, he gets to fondle Amy’s breast. C



    -The O’Reily Factor: Glad to see that Parnell is back. I laughed a little bit, and thought the last letter was funny. B-



    -TV FUNHOUSE – Celebrity Mugshot Poker: This was very Pythonesque, if you ask me. Mugshots playing poker. What is there left to say? C-



    -Brokeback Goldmine: This was a hilarious take-off of the controversial movie Brokeback Mountain, about two gay cowboys. This time it has two gay prospectors. I liked the part with Rachel as the prostitute, and was glad Bill Hader was in something. It was one of the 2 funniest skit of the night. A-



    -The Tony Bennett Show: I never liked this. Tony interviews Dick Cheney, and promotes that stuff I see on TV all the time. (I don’t do product placement) -Pepsi!- C-



    -Carol at the Bowl –A–Rama: I didn’t watch the whole skit, but the end, and laughed. I don’t like this skit though. She had a date with Alec’s character at the bowling Alley. D



    -The Man Who Married A Hotdog: Question, was that Andy as the son? I don’t even wanna know how his kids were born. Mostly, the man who loves hotdogs, marries one, and has 2 kids with them. I thought this was funny. A



    -Medicare: Guess old people like dancing, and are very high tech these days. That’s how they got their attention. Medicare got very modern. D=



    -Santa’s Workshop: Waste of time and pointless. An elf yells at 2 cobblers for a 4-minute skit. Nothing but a time filler. D-



    BEST MOMENT: Shakira, enough said. (But Brokeback Prospectors and the Man Who Married A Prospector were good)



    WORST MOMENT: The Santa skit, and like no Finnesse, or Bill or Andy.



    SURPRISING MOMENT: I laughed at Carol. That never happens.



    SKIT AVERAGE: 1.9, C-



    Show Rating: 7/10 Sparkling Diamonds. (Why is it so high? Shakira is my favorite singer. That’s why!)

    moreless
  • Always Be Cobbling

    9.0
    Welcome to the 12th Time that Alec Baldwin has hosted. This show was filled with technical glitches such as Global TV cutting TV funhouse. I expected Brasky, or Sandler doing the Hanukkah song for the opening. Bring some cameos. I'm ready.



    Saddam in jail: I was under the impression that the show was trying to steer away from political openings. Is this a political opening? 5/5



    Monologue: Yay! A cameo! Tim Meadows should host every week. From then on, I expected a Ladies Man sketch. 5/5



    Tylenol BM: Yay! No MorganStanley or Taco Town. Great sketch 5/5



    Face Transplant: I remember Alec has done weird things (Canteen Boy or Schweddy Balls anyone?) but this is the weirdest. I liked it. 5/5



    O'Reilly Factor: That breaks the streak of Fox News shows with Darrell. Still good. 4/5



    TV Funhouse (Celebrity Mugshot Poker): As i mentioned earlier, Global cut part of this cartoon to do a 30 second promo for "their" shows. I was like what the bloody fuck is Global smoking. The grade goes down because of this major glitch. I'm disapointed in you Global. 5/5



    Brokeback Goldmine: Two old gay prospectors. [shudders] Disturbing. Hader's only sketch of the night. 4/5



    Shakira: I muted the performance and just watched her. I give her 5/5



    Update: Finally. A good Update segment. Good to see Kristen in the show. Wonderful tribute to Richard Pryor. The tribute was what I was waiting for. You see, That is a tribute, NBC, much better than your "tribute" to SNL alum Charlie Rocket. PS, re-air some of his shows. 5/5



    Tony Bennett Show: I liked this sketch until Cheney came out. But the KY lotion gag more than made up for it. 5/5



    Carol: Horatio, you should change the name to "I'm Annoying". It was cut after Dane Cook for a reason. 2/5



    Man Who Married a Hot Dog: Reminds me of a certain character from the 80s that married a MONKEY. Samberg's only performance tonight. Ebersol, eat your heart out. 5/5



    Shakira with Alejandro Sanz: didn't see it



    Medicare: [sigh] Jason, Jason, Jason. 4/5



    Santa's Workshop: My favorite of the night. It's good to see a Glengarry Glen Ross spoof. I liked the ABC's of cobbling and the big gumdrop. 6/5



    Goodnights: Barely aired. I thought this was 2005, not 1980. It's called time management Global. Look into it!



    All in all, this was a good show despite my affiliate fucking the show up. Next week, King Kong star and Tenacious D frontman Jack Black hosts with Canadian rock legend Neil Young.



    You can do a good show in the 2 double 05 I give it a radtacular score.moreless
Shakira

Shakira

Herself

Guest Star

Tim Meadows

Tim Meadows

Himself

Guest Star

Alejandro Sanz

Alejandro Sanz

Himself

Guest Star

Alec Baldwin

Alec Baldwin

Himself

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (3)

    • During the "Santa's Workshop" sketch, Baldwin mistakingly says "Always Be Closing" rather than "Always Be Cobbling," then corrects himself. "Always Be Closing" was a memorable piece of dialogue from "Glengarry Glen Ross," and there is no doubt that Baldwin deliberately flubbed the line.

    • Due to the fact that the show ran long, the goodnights aired for approximately five seconds.

    • When this episode first aired on Global Canada, the "Celebrity Mugshot Poker" cartoon was cut off by a 30-second Global promo.

  • QUOTES (3)

    • Tina Fey: (imitating George W. Bush) The war's going great, we don't torture people, I'm eleven feet tall and if you don't believe me you can ask my unicorn.

    • (After taking Tylenol BM)
      Doug: I'm ready for another day. I slept like a baby!
      Wife: (aghast) Doug! Did you s**t the bed?!
      Doug: You tell me.

    • Voiceover: Dare to let the whiskers of two old prospectors touch you in a special way.

  • NOTES (6)

    • Sketches/segments not shown in the 60 minute version: the "ABC News audition tapes" segment from Weekend Update, Shakira and Alejandro Sanz' performance of "La Tortura," "The O'Reilly Factor," "The Man Who Married a Hot Dog," "Medicare," and "TV Funhouse: Celebrity Mugshot Poker."

    • Maya Rudolph does not appear in this episode, because she is on materinty leave.

    • Will Arnett (Amy Poehler's husband) and Kristen Johnston were in the audience for the live broadcast.

    • The end of Weekend Update featured a clip of Richard Pryor with Chevy Chase from 1975 as a tribute to Pryor, who died the morning before the episode aired.

    • This episode marks the first time a frequent host has made a scheduled appearance on SNL after their Best-of DVD has been produced.

    • This is Alec Baldwin's 12th hosting stint, tying him for second place all-time along with John Goodman.

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • The "Santa's Workshop" sketch is a spoof of Baldwin's cameo in the 1992 film Glengarry Glenn Ross. The ABC mnemonic device and the "Glengarry Tools" Baldwin distributes are a wink and nod to the film.

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