Saturday Night Live: Chris Rock/Prince
November 2, 2014 12:54 PM - Season 40, Episode 5 - Subscribe

An uninterrupted eight minute set by Prince couldn't compensate for a night of flubbed lines and flat sketches.
posted by Small Dollar (18 comments total)
 
The show was disappointing only in that I built it up on my mind for weeks before. Chris Rock is amazing, and Prince is a genius. I guess like the Louie CK episode last year, really good standup comedians don't necessarily make for great SNL sketches, but Chris Rock felt underutilized a little bit. I just thought the episode was so-so, but Rock's monologue of new standup was great as was Prince. Weekend Update was kind of a mess though.
posted by mathowie at 1:31 PM on November 2, 2014


Yeah, the monologue was excellent, but the rest of the show... eh. (As an aside, I really don't know why they keep Michael Che on Weekend Update. He's boring, when he isn't totally blowing his lines. And Colin Jost isn't all that compelling either... I wish they'd put Cecily Strong back on.)
posted by sarcasticah at 1:39 PM on November 2, 2014 [1 favorite]


Leslie Jones walked out of a scene too early (the one with the fighting couple) and had to come back in.

That may have been one the worst SNL flubs ever.
posted by Bonzai at 5:04 PM on November 2, 2014


My favorite sketch of the night was "Vlog" (Hulu), aka "How 2 Dance With Janelle." As someone who's spent too much time on 4chan, hearing Chris Rock say "fap" on air made me laugh harder than anything has in a long while.
posted by Small Dollar at 5:25 PM on November 2, 2014


That may have been one the worst SNL flubs ever.

Agree. She's clearly a crowd favorite because she's got an over-the-top personality but I'm not sure she works on stage as a full-fledged sketch person yet.

Though I don't know about this episode otherwise. We were laughing out loud at the first half of the show which is more than I can say for any other show this season. Rock was good and on-it enough in the sketches he was in and it was good to see so many people in the cast having something to do. They seem to be trying to court the "internet generation" with more stuff that directly references internet stuff and when it hits it's really good. I like the "How's he doing?" sketch which was the only bit with recurring characters that they did.

I love Che because I think he can ad-lib when he screws up and his mellow manner is amusing with the guests on Update but Colin is a drip and has never really worked out there.
posted by jessamyn at 6:03 PM on November 2, 2014 [2 favorites]


It was kinda Prince-lite, wasn't it?
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 6:48 PM on November 2, 2014


Prince-lite? If this was Prince-lite, I'll have to get tickets next time he comes around here. Cause he and his band were fuckin' amazing. That was my favorite musical number since St. Vincent did last season's finale.

As for flubbed lines, isn't that why the show is live, because anything can happen? I would bet fifty cents that Leslie Jones's flub wasn't her fault, but the fault of whoever was holding the cue-cards. And another twenty-five cents says that sketch was a last-moment replacement for something that didn't make it past dress. That said, the blooper was verrrry awkward.

But again, I thought the (other) sketches were solid and had definite beats, buildups, punchlines and endings. Sasheer Zamata is really stepping up her game, too.

I still miss Brooks Wheelan.
posted by not_on_display at 9:04 PM on November 2, 2014


In that first number Prince was basically shredding whole sides of beef with his guitar.
posted by Invisible Green Time-Lapse Peloton at 9:17 PM on November 2, 2014


Well, I just wanted more Prince -- like a second set. We get second sets of all sorts of crap acts -- why can't we get a second set of someone who is interesting? That's all I meant. Jeez.
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 11:20 PM on November 2, 2014


I didn't see Prince in the farewells, either. Maybe he just can't stay awake until 1am anymore. And two of the sketches had Chris Rock as the father of teenagers.

I feel old.
posted by ckape at 9:11 AM on November 3, 2014


Well, I just wanted more Prince -- like a second set. We get second sets of all sorts of crap acts -- why can't we get a second set of someone who is interesting?

We get second songs from other musical guests. Prince did an eight-minute medley, so it wasn't too very much shorter than most musical guests by pure time.
posted by Etrigan at 9:39 AM on November 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'm really glad Prince had that giant symbol on his microphone; you wouldn't want to watch his fingers move while he does that amazing guitar playing now, would you?

I thought the episode was only so-so, but that's been the case with just about all of this season. They've had mostly promising hosts but they haven't really done enough with them.

"How 2 Dance With Janelle." was the best of the night. It's funny to think back to Wayne's World, when they were a public access cable show. Then they had that Jimmy Fallon stoner show, which I think was a webcam show. Now they're doing YouTube shows. SNL keeps up with the trends.

Prince wasn't in the goodbyes because he's Prince, was my guess. I heard they pushed for an extended eight minute set instead of two separate songs. I think that actually worked well and I'd like to see more of that, especially for bands that could pull it off.
posted by bondcliff at 10:39 AM on November 3, 2014


I was amused somewhat. I liked the opening. But Chris was awkward (more than his usual which is funny awkward) in pretty much everything else. Leslie Jones really does need to "stick to producing" as Cube used to tell Dre, and aside from the "How's he doing" sketch that I always get a chuckle out of, Prince was the only other thing worth watching. I wish I could figure out what the show is doing wrong so I could hope for them to fix it.
posted by cashman at 10:42 AM on November 3, 2014


I would bet fifty cents that Leslie Jones's flub wasn't her fault, but the fault of whoever was holding the cue-cards.

You win fifty cents. If you watch the sketch, you can see her scanning for the cards and then losing her temper momentarily when she spots them (probably either being shuffled or not being held up). This has been happening all season. People less familiar with TV production keep blaming the cast for line "flubs"—like Che's on this week's Update—but no, it's been a consistent problem with the cards. It began with the season premiere and has gotten worse instead of better.

That was my favorite musical number since St. Vincent did last season's finale.

Yeah, I don't like Prince much but this performance was still awesome. Mostly I just love the contrast between Prince versus last week's "musical performance" by Iggy Azalea. Sorry kids, but your music really is worse.
posted by cribcage at 3:12 PM on November 3, 2014


How do you know that it's a cue cards problem, cribcage? Not doubting, would just like to know more about this because I've noticed it too and I was curious.
posted by jessamyn at 3:56 PM on November 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


A phrase I never thought would have meaning: at least Chris Rock was better than Jim Carrey.
posted by scalefree at 3:58 PM on November 3, 2014


>How do you know that it's a cue cards problem

To paraphrase my comment from last week, every problem with SNL is a cue card problem.
posted by Catblack at 5:47 PM on November 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Forgive me if this was posted before, but Pete Davidson's father was a firefighter who died at Ground Zero. Wow. That joke in update about bringing his father back just got very very dark indeed.

The musical guest on the infamous "Who Shot JR?" episode with Charlene Tilton as the host? The Purple One himself, before "1999."
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 9:57 PM on November 3, 2014


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