Underrated SNL Skits from the 2010s
Saturday Night Live's glory years may be over, but that doesn't mean the laughs have stopped. Every once in a while, SNL can pump out excellent skits that pale in the spotlight to some of the Digital Shorts, that deserve some more recognition. Here are my picks for some of the most underrated sketches of this decade.
Featured in the very first episode of the 38th season, this sketch exudes creativity, production value and effort. Seth Macfarlane's overly giddy puppet instructor provides the perfect foil to war vet Anthony Peter Coleman, who takes over the class with his stories from 'nam.
An admittedly stupid, but oddly charming skit, this sketch stands out for its unique vibe and infectious dance move. It is also nice to see the cast venture out into the city to make this story feel more realistic in scope. Kenan Thompson hams it up as the narrator, who is quite silly in his own right.
Melissa McCarthy can be a mixed bag, who often straddles the line between physical comedy master to a slapstick mess. In this sketch, she shines in the role of pizza-loving Barb Kelner, with a silly voice and optimistic mindset. But, what really makes this sketch work is the excellent straight man, Jason Sudeikis, who grounds the sketch in the real world.
The cast of a morning talk show film the episode previews for the week, slapping on fake smiles through it all, but collapsing into absolute disgust between the takes. Say what you want about Miley Cyrus, but she sinks right into this role. The mockery of those perky morning talk show hosts, combined with self-loathing and the out of nowhere ending made this sketch a brilliant gem.
Season 39 was a very rough one for SNL, as a large portion of the cast had to be overhauled due to most of the senior cast leaving. Andy Samberg's digital shorts had been abesnt for a year, and the new cast members were vying for attention. Enter the Good Neighbors duo of Bennet and Mooney, with cute sketch about frat bros with their unique beer pong roles. Bennet and Mooney's deadpan, and yet juvenile delivery of the shined frat bros in a whole new light.
Certainly a sketch that is much funnier if you are familiar with the work of Wes Anderson, this combines his unique style with the likes of a generic horror film to awfully funny results. Additionally, the cast gets to chime in with some unique impressions. However, Norton's Owen Wilson stands out from the bunch.
A simple premise, with a satisfying ending. Ooh Child knocks it out of the park working with the simple idea of, what if every time someone tried to sing along to the radio in their car, the GPS interrupted them. The gags seems like it would get old quickly, but the sketches pacing, and slight reinvented of the concept each time makes it worth every second.
This sketch is somewhat of a guilt pleasure of mine, that is both helped and hindered by Louis CK's performance. On the one hand, it seems he is clinging to the cue cards off stage for dear life, yet he memorized the delivery of the lines perfectly. I still quote his, "shhhhhhhut up" and silly pronunciation of 'man' to this day. The sketch works in that it undercuts the idea of a romantic speech at the end of a rom-com with complete gibberish that still seems genuine with CK's sad sack personality.
Talk about an ear worm, step aside Adam Sandler, digital shorts and the SNL girl group, this is where it's at. Woody Harrelson's optimistic sad sap singing such an off-kilter, and unknown campfire song to the dismay of his companion is quite silly, but still has substance. The lyrics to the song, and the catchy tune heightened by the authentic tone Harrelson gives off carries the sketch. Keep going Woody, you're the cock of the walk.