Saturday Night Live “Jim Parsons/Beck” Live Blog/Review (39×14)

1 Mar

26-jim-parsons-snlELLEN COLD OPEN: Well, we’re back after an extended hiatus, and we’re treated to a lazy, meandering cold open that features Parsons doing an awful Johnny Weir impression and myriad lame jokes; at least Kate McKinnon is mildly entertaining. Not a very good way to kick off the night. GRADE: C

MONOLOGUE: “I’m not that guy. I’m not that guy.” Uh, cool? Understandably, Parsons goes off about Sheldon Cooper, but he doesn’t really bring anything to the table that suggests he isn’t. You can tell he’s a bit nervous, though, and the whole thing is very shaky. GRADE: C-

TONKER BELL: What is this? The idea of Tonker Bell might be a bit funny to begin with, but after that initial joke, the sketch just descends into weirdness, and not in a good way. The concept in itself is half-formed, and it’s all executed in a mediocre manner. GRADE: D+

THE BIRD BIBLE: Okay, this is not any better. It could use a lot more fleshing out, and as a minute or two of a simple joke(?), it’s still not very good. It’s very strange, lazy, and tasteless, although to be honest, the “strange and lazy” criticism holds more weight here. Anyway, I’m happy the new cast members seem to be getting more screen time. GRADE: C

THE KILLER FILES: So, Jim Parsons is playing serial killer Marc, and he’s creepily hanging out in all those videos! This is a step up from the dreck beforehand, as it seems to actually be a type of sketch; the problem is that there really isn’t that much comedy to be mined from a premise like this, and Parsons just isn’t funny enough. I’m not a fan of The Big Bang Theory, but I can recognize that this episode isn’t showcasing his talents. GRADE: C+

12 YEARS A SLAVE OSCAR PROFILE: Stop trying to spoof this movie, SNL. You just don’t have the chops to do so. Basically, this sketch is “Black people! White people! Unfunny stuff!” I’ll give them, though: there are at least some funny reactions by the people trying out. The sketch is saved by those reactions. GRADE: B-

WEEKEND UPDATE: Colin Jost doesn’t really make much of an impression here, coming off as pretty stiff and nervous; I’m sure he’ll improve later on. As for this update, the O’Neal-Barkeley team-up makes for a few laughs (diminishing returns, though), and Jebediah Atkinson is still entertaining.  GRADE: B-

MURDER MYSTERY DINNER:  This is a very sitcom-esque, simplistic sketch with a premise that never really builds to anything; Parsons does his best to keep this afloat, but he falls up short. GRADE: C-

SPOTLIGHTZ!: I really enjoyed this the first time around, and it’s still entertaining here. I like the energy brought to this sketch, and although it’s very simple, it’s pulled off nicely for the most part. GRADE: B-

ELEVATOR RIDE: This is just plain stupid; I’m all for absurdity, but not when we’re mining from really lame, juvenile humor. When done well, it can be good for a few cheap laughs, but here? No. GRADE: D

DWAYNE’S BIRTHDAY: Brooks Wheelan’s cards are fairly entertaining, but all in all, this is a mediocre sketch to close out the night. The jokes don’t land, and it’s the capper to a pretty terrible episode. GRADE: C-


Parsons deserved better.

Photo credit: NBC, Saturday Night Live

*Note: The poll is a “worst sketch” poll this week, as it’s a lot easier to do that than a “best sketch” poll.

One Response to “Saturday Night Live “Jim Parsons/Beck” Live Blog/Review (39×14)”

  1. ironhawk22 March 2, 2014 at 1:36 pm #

    Yeah, this episode was absolutely horrible. I also felt like Jim Parsons did a really poor job with the little he was given, I’ve really only seen him on that “Big Bang Theory” and it seemed as if he really can’t play anything else other than that part. The only things I enjoyed about this episode was the Bird Bible, Cecily Strong, and Kate McKinnon’s Ellen impersonation(though the sketch itself was pretty awful). I think Kate McKinnon is now my 2nd favorite SNL-er after Cecily.

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