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Episode Discussion Thread: Lena Dunham/The National (3/8/14)

  • Avatar of JustinRAn

    JustinRAn

    [21]Mar 8, 2014
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    danharr wrote:

    Girl was meh more cheap humor based on Dunham's show. Okay a bad version of Girlfriends seriously they took a good sketch and bastardized it into dreak wtf? I have to admit John Ham showing up was funny.



    It's Wayne's World/ I'm Chilling all over again.
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  • Avatar of Royce7815

    Royce7815

    [22]Mar 8, 2014
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    danharr wrote:


    Okay a bad version of Girlfriends seriously they took a good sketch and bastardized it into dreak wtf? I have to admit John Ham showing up was funny.


    Nasim actually did that skit before when she went to speak at Iowa University>>> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wO7T8ips5Vk

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  • Avatar of JustinRAn

    JustinRAn

    [23]Mar 8, 2014
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    Dang it Fred again.
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  • Avatar of danharr

    danharr

    [24]Mar 8, 2014
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    Wtf Men's rights doesn't argue to pay men more or shut down Planned Parenthood. Where the hell did SNL get this sketch total liberal politics on display.

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  • Avatar of JustinRAn

    JustinRAn

    [25]Mar 8, 2014
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    Before that sketch, I was honestly wondering if Noel was fired/quit.
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  • Avatar of danharr

    danharr

    [26]Mar 8, 2014
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    Kat Williams show was okay for those of us on our way to sleep thanks to whiskey. Jay Pharro's great impersonations are always a treat and was the only reason to tune in.

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    danharr

    [27]Mar 8, 2014
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    Office off-site gathering was the end of the night weird sketch that made no sense.

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  • Avatar of Royce7815

    Royce7815

    [28]Mar 8, 2014
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    Alright we finally get to see Obama again I think Jay got a little rusty i started hearing his voice in between lines there for a moment

    Glad they did a Scandal parody not too ecstatic on which actor portrayed certain characters I always thought Bobby would have done an amazing huck and maybe Beck should have been the president but that's just me.


    What's poplin sketch i thought was going to be a re-packaged Finner Things bit but was slightly different i did like how they took a jab at lil duval and charlemagne being constant fixtures on the channel.

    Colin is still a little bit stiff on delivery i'm always waiting to see if he's going to say something else but then i hear the audience's laughter and figure oh it already happened. So maybe he's not stiff i'm just not finding the jokes funny.

    Really enjoyed the Pimpin Pimpin Katt Williams show Jay Pharaoh is really trying to make ol'e Money Mike relevant again.

    Well I think for me the whole transitional year feeling is just now starting to kick in. Yeah, i started to feel it slightly last week with the Jim Parsons episode but now it's starting to feel like they're struggling a bit. But none the less i'm sure they'll find their footing like they have done many times before or maybe they might get close to being canceled again i don't know i sure hope that won't be the case though.

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  • Avatar of JM5000

    JM5000

    [29]Mar 8, 2014
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    danharr wrote:


    Wtf Men's rights doesn't argue to pay men more or shut down Planned Parenthood. Where the hell did SNL get this sketch total liberal politics on display.



    I am not a Men's Rights Activist...They CAN be rather sexist in blaming feminists for the problems men face...That said, I AM a Men's Rights ADVOCATE, who is well aware of some very legitimate issues that men face in this day and age...So let that be reason enough to express my absolute disgust at the ignorance of this sketch toward what Men's Rights stands for...Just because we're fighting for men's rights does NOT mean we're trying to set back what the Feminist Movement has already accomplished...


    You could blame the "liberal" writers on this, but I have a good hunch who was behind the sketch...There were two things I knew about Lena Dunham going in: She's a writer, and she's a feminist...While I know that not all feminists are anti-male, there are still just as many ignorant feminists as there are ignorant MRA. And even if she DIDN'T write the sketch, she still agreed to play a character who stands on a soapbox talking down to what is apparently your typical MRA...Up until this sketch, I was enjoying her fine as a host, but now for having a hand in offending me, she loses some significant points...


    All the other sketches were fine, but I am not on respectful terms with the host as of tonight...


    Upon the announcement of this line-up, I was rather hard on the National, and while I'm still not a fan of their music, I will admit that their performances were quite innovative (right down to the guy hitting the guitar on the floor to make it play...) Though they WERE pretty damn hard to hear...


    Lena Dunham...You should be ashamed of yourself...


    Edited on 03/08/2014 11:39pm
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  • Avatar of JustinRAn

    JustinRAn

    [30]Mar 9, 2014
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    danharr wrote:

    Office off-site gathering was the end of the night weird sketch that made no sense.



    It reminded me of that sketch with James Franco where Bill Hader and Will Forte were buying miniature "things" for Office employees.
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  • Avatar of Hennes81

    Hennes81

    [31]Mar 10, 2014
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    JM5000 wrote:


    I am not a Men's Rights Activist...They CAN be rather sexist in blaming feminists for the problems men face...That said, I AM a Men's Rights ADVOCATE, who is well aware of some very legitimate issues that men face in this day and age...So let that be reason enough to express my absolute disgust at the ignorance of this sketch toward what Men's Rights stands for...Just because we're fighting for men's rights does NOT mean we're trying to set back what the Feminist Movement has already accomplished...


    Won't get into the political topic too much, but you should always remember that any political campaign or movement will be judged by the political statements AND the people who will express those statements publicly. And if there are people who express exaggerate views (at least for some nona-activists) it's logical to get a bad reputation (here: among women).


    What I'm trying to say: In my mind the sketch isn't written to be against mens rights activists in general but against people (like the character MOB played) who wants to treat men preferentially. Of course the writing suggests that a large number of MRA has these believes. But unless a political movement can't seperate itself from opinions which are not acceptable to a majority there, the movement won't function anyway.


    So maybe the MRA movement should try to get consistent demands (which are acceptable to a majority) before criticizing people who react to some unacceptable demands.

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  • Avatar of Hennes81

    Hennes81

    [32]Mar 10, 2014
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    I think this episode was a move forward compared to last week, but since they had a respected writer as host, I'm not sure if this trend will continue.


    I liked both cameos of Liam Neeson and John Hamm (the first time I really thought, Hamm should be back for hosting), even though they just saved unfunny segments. Also the Putins friends segment was pointless as usual (why would they bring Fred back for those unfunny segments)? Also the WU jokes improved - if only it was for Colin being much more focused.


    I liked Lenas monologue, Ooh child, Scandal, Adam&Eve, Jewelry Party and most of the remainding skits were tolerable at least.

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  • Avatar of JM5000

    JM5000

    [33]Mar 10, 2014
    • member since: 11/14/07
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    Hennes81 wrote:


    JM5000 wrote:


    I am not a Men's Rights Activist...They CAN be rather sexist in blaming feminists for the problems men face...That said, I AM a Men's Rights ADVOCATE, who is well aware of some very legitimate issues that men face in this day and age...So let that be reason enough to express my absolute disgust at the ignorance of this sketch toward what Men's Rights stands for...Just because we're fighting for men's rights does NOT mean we're trying to set back what the Feminist Movement has already accomplished...


    Won't get into the political topic too much, but you should always remember that any political campaign or movement will be judged by the political statements AND the people who will express those statements publicly. And if there are people who express exaggerate views (at least for some nona-activists) it's logical to get a bad reputation (here: among women).


    What I'm trying to say: In my mind the sketch isn't written to be against mens rights activists in general but against people (like the character MOB played) who wants to treat men preferentially. Of course the writing suggests that a large number of MRA has these believes. But unless a political movement can't seperate itself from opinions which are not acceptable to a majority there, the movement won't function anyway.


    So maybe the MRA movement should try to get consistent demands (which are acceptable to a majority) before criticizing people who react to some unacceptable demands.



    All I'm saying is that the way they presented it suggested that the mere fact that the character was an MRA was the joke, and all the little details like spreading the wage gap and shutting down Planned Parenthood came with the territory, in an exaggerated sense...In the end, it still seemed to suggest that fighting for men's rights = sexist.


    But I have had time to cool my head and now see this as nothing more than a minor annoyance...


    I can't speak for all MRA...I am not an activist, and I won't deny that they may be having too much trouble getting past their anger toward feminism to find solutions or compromises...But I am seeing some legitimate effort in the MRA circles...These efforts are mostly ineffective, but more people are becoming aware of these issues, which is a start...I just hope the media doesn't continue to make us look like the bad guys...


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  • Avatar of HelloStuart

    HelloStuart

    [34]Mar 13, 2014
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    My thoughts:

    + Making light of the Putin/Crimea situation is more delicate than it seems. You don't want to tread into the same tired Yakov Smirnoff schtick, but you can't trample on the brevity of the crisis, either. Liam Neeson's cameo, while a little corny, split the difference.

    + I think June Squibb's performance in "Nebraska" stole some cues from Lena's Grandma Dot.

    + As odd as it was to see a digital short immediately after the monologue, I really enjoyed "Ooh Child." Just don't give away the twist ending.

    + "Hey, my flute amp!"

    + I remember when Jon Hamm first hosted 5 1/2 years ago and half of this forum had no idea who he was. Considering that a similar number of people weren't familiar with Lena Dunham, Hamm's cameo in "What Are You Even Doing?" was a subtle full-circle moment. Sometimes an obscure choice can be a diamond in the rough.

    + Speaking of filmed pieces, that "Girls" parody literally and figuratively landed from the sky. Using the Book of Genesis as a backdrop was inspired in a way that I wonder how no one made the connection previously.

    + After an awkward first spin, the rejiggered Weekend Update was on firmer footing. Colin didn't have that deer-in-the-headlights quality, though he and Cecily alike are still finding their voice, a unsteady navigation buffered by a string of really solid jokes. The chemistry is nonexistent thus far, though not anyone can be Fallon and Fey. At least the return of (international despot of the week)'s childhood friends was both an inoffensive throwback and an incentive for casual fans to keep watching.

    + At one point during Taran Killam's commentary as Matthew McConaughey --the latest home run in Taran's Update winning streak-- he referred to Colin as "Cojo." I'm totally stealing that.

    + With Season 39 almost three-quarters over, a certain level of democracy is spreading in the bloated cast. Though Kenan and Taran are still clearly the alpha dogs, Bobby has gone stealth while Jay and POB are getting juicer parts. On that note, Jay has been a revelation lately; he's transitioning from doing basic impressions of newsmakers to characters of dimension and substance (case in point: "What's Poppin" and the Katt Williams sketch). A heavy dose of Brooks was also quite refreshing, though Milhiser has all but disappeared.

    + Speaking of obscure choices, The National has been quietly generating one quality indie-rock album after another for almost a decade now. Their 2013 effort Trouble Will Find Me was a breakthrough of sorts, earning critical acclaim and moderate radio play, though I don't think anyone anticipated how ragged and unpolished the Ohio-based septet can be as a live act. Frontman Matt Berninger has a distinctly yearning baritone, though his mic-tapping during the band's workout of "Graceless" triggered the reticent, introverted side of his personality.

    + After the Parsons/Beck mess, SNL rightened the ship in their second post-Meyers effort. Considering how the head writer has left at midseason only once in SNL history --Michael O'Donoghue in Year 7-- it seems that the rebuilding and recovery period won't take too long. (That's not to say the current state of SNL is at all fully formed.) Jitters aside Ms. Dunham was a good sport despite a limited range, though she only occasionally took front and center in the sketches she appeared in. Though Dunham may have a polarizing quality, she limited her neurotic navelgazing to the monologue and played on like a pro, putting enthusiasm ahead of any exposed weakness.

    6.5/10
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  • Avatar of avmon

    avmon

    [35]Mar 28, 2014
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    Just watched this online. Here's my thoughts: Cold Open with Obama and Liam Neeson was funny enough. Lena Dunham was funny interacting with some cast members about their sex lives with Kate doing fine as her "grandma". That "Ooo Child" short film had a shockingly funny twist. Glad Nazim Pedrad had another good one with Jon Hamm a nice surprise. Not surprised at the Adam & Eve meets "Girls" "promo" which I found funny though I've yet to watch that show. Liked both The Nationals' sets. Colin Jost second stint on "Weekend Update" was a little better. Killiam killing it as Matthew McConaghey! Oh, Fred's back doing "friends of dictator" with Vanessa! Liked it enough. Post-"WU" sketch about a man who's a member of a men's activist group in front of various women I wasn't crazy about though the politics didn't bother me, it was simply meh. Oh, liked the earlier sketch about a white folk group doing "rap". And that "Scandal" parody though I don't watch that show, either. And the final sketch I saw online was that "Pimpin' Pimpin'" one with the Harrison Ford impression the only really funny part. Overall, mostly good show.

    Edited on 03/28/2014 7:13am
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