Dwayne Johnson returned for his third appearance as SNL host last night, joined by musical guest Ray Lamontagne. The results? There were some funny sketches, while others were quite weak.
I remember having my doubts about Johnson when he first appeared on the show. At that time, he was still World Wrestling Entertainment’s The Rock, but had began his transition into the world of film. I also recall being pleasantly surprised at just how funny he was. So let’s just say I expected more from this episode.
His latest appearance began with a musical number during his opening monologue – a Broadway-inspired song and dance called “Tough Guy”, complete with tights and tutus!
I don’t know why I didn’t imagine this sooner, but how cool was it that MacGruber featured MacGyver? Yes, Richard Dean Anderson reprised his role as MacGyver, and revealed he’s MacGruber’s father. In the second segment, MacGruber found out his dad abandoned him for a stripper. That MacGruber has some real daddy issues!
The next sketch was all a figment of Andy Samberg as Rahm Emanuel’s imagination, but it was kind of funny. I wouldn’t have thought of Barack Obama transforming into The Rock Obama, an Incredible Hulk-like character when he gets mad. It was good for a chuckle or two, but it doesn’t have much of a re-watchability factor.
I don’t know what it is lately with SNL bringing back stuff that wasn’t funny to begin with, ie the Activia commercial parodies with Kristen Wiig as Jamie Lee Curtis. I still don’t find this funny, and the poopy pants chain reaction between JLC and Abby Elliott’s character just made it even worse.
Now I know I’ll probably get flack for this, but I thought the Hawaiian restaurant sketch was good. Johnson and Fred Armisen played bitter locals that have to act like monkeys to entertain the tourists. I had a real laugh with the line “it’s not like our President’s Hawaiian”.
Some special guests made the Weekend Update priceless! Apparently, Jessica Rabbit was voted the sexiest cartoon character, so Cathy of comic strip fame joined Seth Meyers to comment on not being sexy, along with her husband, Irving, played by Justin Timberlake. Irving dotes on his wife until Jessica Rabbit enters the picture – played by none other than JT’s real life girfriend Jessica Biel. Okay SNL, everything JT does on the show is pure magic – they should seriously consider making him a permanent player for a season!
The rest of the sketches were pretty unremarkable, and I downright hated the one with the lighthouse keeper played by Johnson.
I was pleased with Ray Lamontagne as musical guest. He’s a gifted musician, and one of my personal faves. Overall, he gave two solid performances.
This episode of SNL was pretty much hit and miss. Kudos on MacGruber and Weekend Update. I know Dwayne Johnson is a funny guy, and it’s a shame that the writers didn’t have some better content for their host.
Photo Courtesy of NBC.com