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Tag: Music + Comedy = Good Thing? (1-10 of 233)

Seth Rogen hosts 'Saturday Night Live' this weekend: Talk about it here!

You know what’s weird? Though tonight marks Seth Rogen’s third stint as SNL host, I realized before writing this post that I couldn’t remember a single sketch he’d done during either of his previous turns. Maybe that’s because it’s been a surprisingly long time since Rogen graced the SNL stage; the last time he was on, he was promoting 2009′s Observe and Report. (The first time he hosted was another era altogether; the 2007 episode featured jabs at Kevin Federline, Senator Larry Craig, and multiple MacGruber sketches.)

More likely, though, it’s because Rogen’s hosting style isn’t particularly flashy. In movies, he gravitates toward genial, laid-back sensitive bro types; in his past stints on SNL, he’s done much of the same, give or take a pair of Muppets sketches that had him donning a big, furry suit. (Dear Internet: Why is “Muppets Hit & Run” not available anywhere online? This is a travesty!) Rogen isn’t much of an impressionist, or an insanely energetic, up-for-anything quintuple threat type — he’s more of a Jason Sudeikis-esque everyguy, but nerdier and schlubier and more likely to talk about being Jewish. (And he’s hosting just in time for Passover — what a mensch.)

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Jimmy Fallon and Stevie Nicks re-create 'Stop Draggin' My Heart Around' -- VIDEO

When the incomparable Stevie Nicks made an appearance on The Tonight Show Wednesday, playing one or two of her hits just wasn’t going to be enough for Jimmy Fallon. The musically-inclined host planned something much more memorable — re-creating the music video for “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around,” Nicks’s 1981 duet with Tom Petty.

Fallon assumes Petty’s role — shaggy blond wig, floral shirt, and all — while Nicks proves she’s still got it, not to mention a sense of humor. Here’s Fallon’s version:

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'Saturday Night Live' recap: Anna Kendrick is a (pitch) perfect Disney princess

Disney fans, this was a Saturday Night Live for you.

Going into the episode, it seemed likely there would be at least one musical sketch moment. After all, Anna Kendrick was a Tony nominee when she was just a teenager, starred in the cult classic Camp, and is perhaps best known as the lead in the a cappella comedy Pitch Perfect, which somehow spawned a huge radio hit for the actress with her cover of “Cups.” (Don’t worry. That was – cleverly – spoofed last night as well.)

While a little singing seemed to be a safe bet, no one could have expected that the show would go full Disney princess, with no less than four music moments by Kendrick. The program wholly embraced the host’s musical side, and likely recruited a few more fans eager to see Kendrick’s upcoming interpretation of Cinderella in December’s highly anticipated (and slightly feared) adaptation of the musical Into the Woods. (Other upcoming Kendrick musical performances: The Last Five Years and Pitch Perfect 2.) While the show – and Kendrick – were more charmingly amusing than laugh-out-loud funny, this episode will still go down in the “success” column thanks to a combination of clever writing, higher-than-normal energy, and a host that somehow rapped more than Drake did a few months back. READ FULL STORY

Anna Kendrick hosts 'Saturday Night Live' this weekend: Talk about it here!

Get ready for SNL: The Musical.

The host: Anna Kendrick, who snagged an Oscar nomination for Up in the Air but is probably known best for crooning without accompaniment — unless you count a little cup percussion — in Pitch Perfect. Sondheim-lovers of a certain age may also remember the actress’ film debut as Fritzi, the most conniving girl at theater camp – and real Kendraholics know that even before that, at the age of 12, Kendrick was nominated for a Tony for her work in Broadway’s High Society (a musical adaptation of The Philadelphia Story).

Long story short: The lady can and will be singing tonight, maybe just in her monologue, possibly from the moment the cold open begins all the way to the end credits.

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Anna Kendrick sings in 'Saturday Night Live' promos, because of course -- VIDEO

Should we begin prepping for a musical monologue now?

The first promos for Anna Kendrick’s debut Saturday Night Live hosting stint have arrived, and Taran Killam wastes no time pointing out that Kendrick has a musical theater background (prior to Pitch Perfect, she was also in Camp). Killam tries to make Kendrick feel at home by singing her some show tunes, but music rights get in the way of everything. No matter; the duo make up their own goofy song (complete with a competitive edge), and barely manage to keep a straight face. All that, and a bit-too-late April Fool’s Day prank!

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'Saturday Night Live' recap: Louis C.K. does his thing

It’s too bad the Polar Vortex doesn’t inspire the same creativity as Hurricane Sandy.

When Louis C.K. first hosted SNL in 2012, his debut was nearly ruined by devastating weather. Against all odds, the show went on anyway — and it ended up being one of that fall’s more successful episodes. Although Saturday’s weather (in New York City, anyway) echoed 2012′s cold, rainy November, the show wasn’t quite as on point this time around. C.K. acquitted himself fairly well, minus a few flubbed lines and character breaks. That said, he only really let loose in his opening monologue, perhaps because it’s the only opportunity he had to do what he really does best.

So the show wasn’t great across the board — but it did have a few gems, including the night’s…

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Louis C.K. hosts 'Saturday Night Live' this weekend: Talk about it here!

Eighteen months (and two days) ago, FX aired the final episode of Louie‘s third season. In the long, long period since that day, comedy auteur Louis C.K. has kept himself fairly busy, what with all the touring and stand-up specials and late-night guest appearances and roles in critically acclaimed movies like Blue Jasmine and American Hustle – and, of course, filming/writing/directing/key gripping the fourth season of Louie, which will finally premiere on FX May 5. (And what a return it’ll be: FX will air two episodes weekly for seven weeks, meaning the majority of the season will have aired before the eligibility deadline for the 2014 Emmys.)

That said, it’s been a while since Louis has had a sustained comedy showcase on TV in general, much less a major network; his last turn as Saturday Night Live host came back in 2012 (and was nearly derailed by Hurricane Sandy). What can we expect from his glorious return this weekend?

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'SNL' recap: Lena Dunham is just a girl, standing in front of an audience, asking them to like her

So, how did Lena Dunham do in her inaugural episode of Saturday Night Live? It depends who you’re asking.

Those who are generally into Dunham’s work were probably amused on the whole, even if they also wished Lena had broken out of her comfort zone a little more. (Perhaps unsurprisingly, Dunham played a bunch of girls — immature, fast-talking, hyperbole-happy variations on her HBO persona — and one serviceable Liza Minnelli.) But if you’re one of those people who can’t stand cable’s wunderkind — here I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt, and assume that dislike has nothing to do with Dunham’s looks – your feelings likely weren’t swayed by Lena’s SNL performance, since it hewed so closely to what she does weekly on Girls.

Since I’m in the former camp, I’ll give the episode a tempered thumbs up. While SNL‘s writers’ room is clearly still suffering from growing pains in the wake of Seth Meyers’s exit — someone has to, like, remind them that sketches are supposed to have jokes — last night’s show was, pound for pound, stronger than March 1′s Jim Parsons Experience. And it packed in a few  solid laughs, particularly in the night’s…

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Lena Dunham hosts 'Saturday Night Live' this weekend: Talk about it here!

Girls is smart, well-made, thought-provoking, and very entertaining — provided you’re in the right mindset and/or have a high tolerance for watching selfish people go about their lives. That said, Lena Dunham’s adventure in auteurism isn’t exactly a laugh-out-loud sort of show — and really never has been, barring a few notable exceptions (Shoshanna on crack; Hannah and Elijah on coke; suddenly I’m sensing a pattern). I like to describe Broad City as “Girls, but funny” — which is probably why I like Broad City a whole lot more than I like Girls.

Despite all this, I’ve still got high hopes for Lena Dunham’s first episode as host of Saturday Night Live. Why? Because while Girls isn’t funny, Dunham herself is; I’ve got no doubt that when she decides to make a pure comedy, she’ll end up creating something great. And perhaps more importantly, Dunham is an experienced writer with a fully developed voice, which is just what SNL needs right now.

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Jim Parsons hosts 'Saturday Night Live' this weekend: Talk about it here!

Jim Parsons is delightful. He’s cute, charming, good with a punchline, and unfailingly humble, even when being nominated for (and winning) yet another Best Actor trophy for his work on The Big Bang Theory.

That said, Parsons faces one major roadblock as an actor: He’s so closely associated with theoretical physicist/brilliant jerk Sheldon Cooper, whom he’s been playing for seven seasons on CBS, that it’s a little jarring to see him inhabit another role. And maybe more importantly, Sheldon Cooper is so beloved that a lot of people might not want to watch Parsons experiment with a different character.

Think of Parsons’ debut episode of SNL, then, as a sort of fresh start — an easy way for him to quickly play a bunch of different sorts of people, proving his range and getting folks used to the idea that he and Sheldon are, in fact, different people. READ FULL STORY

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