The SNL Funny 115
49. Rocket Dog - 3/14/09 (Host: Tracy Morgan)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/08/08rflix.phtml Video: https://vimeo.com/3771062
I don't personally think Tracy Morgan was ever all that great on SNL,
but he did do Rocket Dog, and Rocket Dog makes me laugh. So here
is one of the more bizarre SNL creations of the 2000's, Rocket
Dog. Houston, we have a dog!
48. Ben Affleck's monologue - 2/9/00 (Host: Ben Affleck)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/99/99mmono.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/zaprhj3
I will never get tired of a good "Good Will Hunting" joke, and the one
that Gwyneth Paltrow dumps on Ben Affleck in the middle of this
monologue is one of my all time favorites. I am guessing that nobody
aside from me would have ranked this in their top SNL moments, but to
me there are few things funnier in an SNL monologue than Gwyneth
telling Ben that she knows he didn't write the show tonight "because
Matt's not here." And then the look on Ben's face after she says
that. It's just an all time great SNL monologue moment.
47. Trick or Treat - 10/25/08 (Host: Jon Hamm)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/08/08fjeff.phtml Video: https://vimeo.com/110535528
What I love about this sketch is the fact that if you put a mustache on
Will Forte, he automatically looks like a sex offender. So
why not just write an entire sketch about that? This is one of
the great Will Forte masterpieces on SNL, and of course no one but him
could have possibly played this role. And I should also add that
this isn't the only time Will Forte will show up in the top 50 on my
list for playing a pedophile. Will Forte, ladies and
gentlemen. He's the actor of the people.
46. Super Showcase - 2/18/12 (Host: Maya Rudolph)
Transcript: None Video: http://tinyurl.com/j48g9wv
not really a fan of sketches where everyone breaks character and starts
laughing, but the break in this one is so extreme that you just sort of
have to appreciate it. Kristin Wiig absolutely loses it on the
line "a one day, no night stay at Pebble Beach" and after that, she and
Maya Rudolph and Bill Hader are all just done. Gone.
Although I should point out that the absolutely stoic Vanessa Bayer
refuses to break character and she is the only person in the entire
sketch who never cracks up. Yet another reason
why Bayer is one of my favorites. The girl is a pro.
It's really fun to say "A lifetime supply of chicken from Chicken Man"
in Maya Rudolph's weird little accent. No wonder everyone else
was losing it in this sketch. I don’t know how Vanessa
Bayer was able to hold it together, this one is really funny.
45. Lincoln - 11/3/12 (Host: Louis C.K.)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/12/12flincoln.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/hhb7dj3
Comments: This is a dead on parody of the show "Louie" starring the 16th president of the United States.
is one of those sketches that was universally beloved when it first
came out, and it is still universally beloved today, namely because
everyone loves Louis C.K. The only reason I dropped it down into the
40's is because I had never seen the Louie show before I saw this
sketch, so I didn't really get all the references. You could
definitely make the argument that Lincoln is one of the 10 best things
that SNL has done since the year 2000, but this is a list of my
favorites, not of the overall funniest sketches. So I'll put Lincoln
down here in the 40's simply because there are other SNL sketches from
this era that I have loved more. But it is definitely one of the
44. Bad Boys - 9/27/14 (Host: Chris Pratt)
Transcript: None Video: http://tinyurl.com/zpsnj42
Bad Boys is a bizarre little parody of 90's sitcoms and sitcom cliches
and... um... yeah. It's weird. You just sort of have to
watch it to appreciate it.
I know that the Good Neighbor
short film stuff isn't for everyone, but I have always appreciated what
they come up with, even if I don't always love all of them. But I
don't know how anyone wouldn't appreciate the random awkward weirdness
in Bad Boys. I mean, how can you not love the increasingly
inappropriate transition shots as we move from one scene to the
next? One minute we're in an apartment, the next minute we're on
a train, the next minute we're in a castle in Mordor. I
love random little shit like that. This is the best sketch
that Kyle Mooney and Beck Bennett have managed to pull off on SNL so
far, although admittedly I probably like it more than you do.
This is definitely a writer's sketch more than anything.
43. The Curse of Sergio - 1/30/10 (Host: Jon Hamm)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/09/09mshort.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/zpcbpsx
One of the things that makes Jon Hamm such a great SNL host is
that the guy will do anything. And here we have one of the best
examples of that, where he plays a sexy shirtless sax man who emerges
from Kristin Wiig's nooner covered in amniotic fluid. Find
me another SNL host who will do that.
By the way, this
is the portion of my countdown where the Digital Shorts are about to
start taking over, so we kick it off at #43 with one of my kids' all
time favorites, Sergio. I have no idea who thought that the Sexy
Sax Man from The Lost Boys needed to have a sketch written about him,
but, well, here you go.
The original sexy sax man
42. The Californians - 4/14/12 (Host: Josh Brolin)
Transcript: None Video: http://tinyurl.com/jjedwdp
The Californians is probably the most polarizing thing that has
happened on SNL since the era of Adam Sandler. People who love this
sketch absolutely LOVE it, and people who hate it... well... let's just
say this. Try going on an SNL message board some time and ask what
people think about the Californians. Watch how everyone immediately
loses their shit. It is the surest way to piss off 99% of the people
on any SNL message board on the internet, just say that you are one of
the people who liked the Californians.
As for me, The
Californians is not my favorite sketch in the world, and I really do
wish they would have stopped doing it after the first time instead of
running it into the ground by repeating it ten more times. If they had
only done this sketch once it probably would have been an instant
classic. But at the same time, hey, I'm a Southern Californian. This
sketch was written for people like me, and it cracks me up. There is
also no SNL sketch that I quote more often than I quote the
Californians. In fact, I can't think of a SNL fan I know in Southern
California who DOESN'T love and quote this sketch. So there's that.
And as much as I generally don't like sketches where the actors break
and everyone starts laughing, I have never minded it in this particular
sketch because I probably would have cracked too. Especially
because... and you probably wouldn't know this unless you lived here...
because all the directions they are giving in the dialogue are 100%
accurate. And that really is how people give directions around here. That really is how you get to San Vicente.
At the end of the day, I love the Californians enough
to put it in my top 100, but I don't love it enough to rank it any
higher than #42. Yeah, true, it's a sketch that is specifically
designed for people in only one area of the country. But I happen to
live in that area of the country, and I love it, so bite me. I'll give
you guys all your dumb political skits that I don't like, and you need
to give me the Californians. It's only fair.
41. Potato Chip Thief - 12/5/09 (Host: Blake Lively)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/09/09hpotatochip.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/hlom79j
This is one of those sketches where I don't even know what to say about
it. Um, it's weird. Is that enough? This is maybe the
single oddest sketch that SNL has ever done, I think you could
certainly make the argument. I mean, watch this sketch a couple
of times and just pick out the little details that don't make sense and
don't have to be there. Why the extreme southern accents?
Why the hemorrhoid donut? Why the line about "undry
dreams"? Why does Sudeikis not actually look at the other actors
when he is talking to them? And why the hell did Will Forte
choose to end the sketch with that artsy lined-up theater shot (see
Potato Chip Thief is one of the ultimate "love or hate
it" SNL sketches. Some people absolutely love it. Some
people absolutely hate it. It is the absolute pinnacle of what
Will Forte came up with as an SNL writer, and to my dying day I will
always appreciate that they were able to actually film this thing live
on the air and nobody cracked up. How the hell did Forte not
break when Sudeikis spit the potato chip into his hand???
some level, Will Forte was a genius. But at this point, we're
just not really sure what that level was, so we are presented with
Potato Chip Thief. Feel free to make what you want out of it.
P.S. Oh yeah, here is a great excerpt from the Entertainment Weekly review of this sketch: "Forte
and Sudeikis were so ferociously committed to this material, I ended up
admiring the hell out of them. I didn’t laugh, but I had to hand
it to them. It was kind of like SNL’s version of There Will Be Blood."
Bonus link: Check out this great page, which is an oral history of the Potato Chip Thief sketch and how it came about.
40. Neurotology Music Video - 4/4/15 (Host: Michael Keaton)
Transcript: None Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fOpapeX6Vzs
This is the famous (and ballsy) video where SNL decided to take down
Scientology, and it is so well done and biting that it is just a flat
out masterpiece. In fact, listen to the end of this clip.
The moment the song ends, somebody in the studio audience goes,
"Wowwwwww!" which is pretty much all you can say about it.
I said before, nearly everyone in the current cast of SNL has some sort
of musical theater training, so we have had a lot of great musical
parodies like this on SNL over the past couple of years. The
Neurotology video is definitely one of the best of them.
By the way, want to see the original Scientology video this clip is making fun of? Well click and enjoy.
39. Maraka - 3/24/07 (Host: Peyton Manning)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/06/06pfunhouse.phtml Video: https://vimeo.com/9063231
Robert Smigel decides to take down Dora the Explorer in this wicked
little cartoon masterpiece that kills me every. single.
goddamn. time. I watch it. Watch Maraka save a baby
penguin while she ponders the questions of free will, if Robert Blake
was guilty, if an androgynous picture is of a guy or a girl, and why
her father left her. This was one of the best TV Funhouse segments that
Robert Smigel ever did, it's hilarious.
38. Love Letters (tit pic) - 1/19/13 (Host: Jennifer Lawrence)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/12/12kletters.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/jpquq2n
And now we're back to my old friend Tim Robinson. Tim, who some
would call a poor man's Will Forte, had only one season as a castmember
on SNL, but he sure gave it his all. Including this
end-of-the-night sketch from the Jennifer Lawrence episode where a
Civil War soldier writes letters to his sweetheart back home asking her
to send him a tit pic. It's not the most intelligent or ambitious
sketch idea in the world, but simply writing the word "tit pic" in a
sentence made me laugh so there you go. Only Tim Robinson could
combine the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, old timey Ken Burns music,
and the words "tit pic" into the same sketch idea.
I should also
add that Jennifer Lawrence is really good in this sketch, and if she
wouldn't have sold the character, the idea wouldn't have worked.
Jennifer Lawrence is another one of those people who just seems like
she was born to host SNL. The show has had a lot of those
37. Peyton Manning for United Way - 3/24/07 (Host: Peyton Manning)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/06/06pway.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/zb4vr2q
This commercial was a huge crowd favorite at the time and you are going
to see it show up on every SNL sports anthology show for the next
ten years. Please spend time with your kids, so Peyton Manning
doesn't have to. By the way, the detail I love about this sketch
is that Peyton is actually pegging those kids with a toy
football. That doesn't look fake to me, he is actually blasting
them. I don't care if it is some sort of a Nerf football, that's
still got to hurt. Let's give it up for those poor stunt kids.
This sketch showed up in the same episode as the Maraka sketch (2
entries above). That was quite an episode. And guess what,
we haven't even gotten to the best sketch of the 2007 Peyton Manning
36. Don't Buy Stuff You Cannot Afford - 2/4/06 (Host: Steve Martin)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/05/05lbuy.phtml Video: https://vimeo.com/41152287
Here's a very simple sketch from about ten years ago, when
everybody in the country was in debt because they were buying too much
stuff. Leave it to SNL to bluntly say what everyone else was
thinking. Stop buying stuff you can’t afford, you idiots.
35. Disney Channel Acting School - 3/5/11 (Host: Miley Cyrus)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/10/10pdisney.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/z5cl77h
You know what I love about this sketch? I love the fact that
Miley Cyrus and Kenan Thompson are both former child actors, and they
are apparently working out a lot of their demons by poking fun at their
backgrounds. When you watch this sketch it looks like it is all
very cathartic for them. I also love that it makes fun of stuff
that I have hated about Disney Channel TV shows for a long time.
Also, my kids quote this sketch constantly.
When you use Kenan Thompson right (like in this sketch), the guy is awesome. "The funeral's Monday!!!!"
34. One-a-Day Nasaflu - 5/12/12 (Host: Will Ferrell)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/11/11unasaflu.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/jxhftbs
Will Ferrell is one of the best yellers in the history of SNL, and
Kristin Wiig is one of the best at reacting to what somebody else is
doing. You put the two of them together in this one commercial
and it's like the Keymaster finally meeting the Gatekeeper. Great
commercial. I love Kristin's angry f-bomb.
33. Dylan McDermott or Dermot Mulroney - 12/8/12 (Host: Jamie Foxx)
Transcript: http://snltranscripts.jt.org/12/12idylan.phtml Video: http://tinyurl.com/joxu4se
This is one of those sketches that really isn't anything special on
paper, but somehow because of the performances of Bill Hader, Jay
Pharoah, Jamie Foxx and (especially) Kenan Thompson, it just sort of
works. Don't ask me why it works. It just works.
Maybe we can ask Derbel McDillet.
A few years ago I noticed this picture in an issue of
Entertainment Weekly and, well, it made me laugh. Guess which two
celebrities have a birthday the same week!
32. First Got Horny 2 U - 11/14/15 (Host: Elizabeth Banks)
Transcript: None Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3twGmSu1MI0
SNL has been off the charts lately with how many good song
parodies they have come up with over the last couple of years, and this
parody of 90's Boy Bands from right at the end of my cutoff
(2015) was a classic the minute it aired. This is another
SNL parody that I actually put on my iPod (along with the Wishin'
Boot) a couple of weeks ago, because not only is it a good parody,
this is actually a legitimately catchy good song. Like I have
said a couple of times before, nearly every single person in SNL's
current cast can actually sing, so they are just reeling off good song
parodies the last couple of years one right after the other. I
have never seen as many musical parodies on SNL as I am seeing
now, over the past couple of seasons.
In any case, if you
have never seen it before, enjoy First Got Horny 2 U. And, in
particular, enjoy Aidy Bryant scooting across the floor to the thought
of the teen son from Dinosaurs. Aidy Bryant is without question
one of the big underrated gems in the cast right now, and my guess is
that she is probably the main driver behind all of the awesome recent
song parodies. If you notice, she always gets the funniest part
in the song.
31. Louis C.K.'s monologue - 5/16/15 (Host: Louis C.K.)
Transcript: None Video: http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/louis-ck-monologue/2866689
Every so often a stand up comedian comes on the show and just knocks it
out of the park with their opening monologue. Chris Rock did it
in the mid 90's in one of my all time favorite SNL monologues, and for
years I thought he would be the pinnacle of what an SNL monologue could
be and what a stand up comedian on SNL could be capable of.
And then, in May of 2015, we got Louis C.K.
I can say about Louis C.K.'s monologue from last May, in which he
discusses the middle east, why he likes one of his daughters better
than the other one, how everyone in the world has some sort of mild
benign racism, and... oh yeah... why molesting children must be really good because molesters keep doing it...
is if you aren't used to listening to some really edgy stand up comedy,
hold on to your butt. Louis C.K. goes right up to the line of
what you are allowed to say on TV, and he has a smile on his face the
entire time because he knows he is edging up to that line, and he is
loving every minute of it. And I loved it too, if only because I
don't have balls as big as Louis C.K. does and I have to admire that.
Do you like Louis C.K.'s unique dark twisted brand of humor?
Want a special Louis C.K. SNL bonus link? Well here is a
sketch he wrote for the show back when he wrote for SNL in the early
2000's. It is called Shazzang and, uh, it's pretty dark. I
was actually hoping to get Shazzang on my countdown somewhere in
the 100's since nobody knows about it, but I couldn't fit it in. So you get it here instead as a
Louis C.K. bonus link.
30. Asian American Doll - 12/20/14 (Host: Amy Adams)
Transcript: None Video: https://tinyurl.com/hxqo9wb
And we kick off my top 30 with a commercial that is absolutely perfect
for a decade where everyone is offended by everything. Asian
American doll. The doll that’s guaranteed not to
offend anyone! I love when stuff like this shows up on SNL, it's
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