SNLbrought back their 1990s sketch about infamous salesman Bill Brasky over the weekend. Will Ferrell came back for the bit, but Tim Meadows — who participated four times from '96 to '98 — was nowhere to be seen. Meadows quickly detailed his feelings on the matter on his Facebook wall: "I guess it just dawned on me that I mean NOTHING to them ... I'm just being overly sensitive. It doesn't matter in the long run. I'm grateful for what they did for me." Later: "I will never watch SNL again" and "Fuck them." Even later: "I talked to a friend on the show who said it WAS a last minute sketch. I acted like a baby. I'm happy for all of my friends success and will always be grateful and proud to have been a part of SNL." Settled, then.
Finally, a trilogy everyone actually wants to see. (If this doesn't sound like you, please locate the X on your browser and click it. Or just grab a Sharpie and mark a fat X over your screen — that will also work.) Amy Poehler and Tina Fey, humor empresses and superlative Neil Patrick Harris hecklers ("Yo, NPH, take those pants off, America wants to see what you're workin' with!"), will return to host the Golden Globe Awards not just next year, but even the year after. The BFFs, who totally need their own celebrity portmanteau (is there one already going around? Is it Tinamy? Fehler? Amina Poehley?), brought 19.7 million viewers to the NBC telecast this past January, a six-year high for the show; there was also a 28 percent increase in the 18-to-49 demo. Meaning that, yes, signing Poehler and Fey for two more years was what they in the biz call "a no-brainer." (Surprisingly rare, though. Ricky Gervais hosted three straight years starting in 2010, but each uncomfortable performance was followed by waves of "he probably won't be back"/"I'm not coming back" chatter.) Folks — millions of 'em — will tune in for the next two Januarys with purpose, vigor, and high, boozy expectations.
The first thing you should know about comedic actors is that most of them really want to act dramatically. The second thing is that, yes, A.C.O.D. is infinitely better than R.I.P.D., but that's not asking very much. The third thing, which is really the first and only thing you actually wanted to know, is that A.C.O.D. stands for Adult Children of Divorce. Adam Scott, lately of Parks and Recreation, plays Carter, the titular adult child of divorce. In a plot that sounds more convoluted than it plays, Carter finds out he was part of a landmark study conducted by a flaky pseudo-therapist (Jane Lynch) on the emotional issues suffered by kids whose parents split up. The feuding parents are played by Richard Jenkins and Catherine O'Hara, who find the humor in even the most intense screaming matches. It's like The Squid and the Whale mated with a Restoration comedy and a '70s sitcom.
A.C.O.D. tries to be a lot of things at once: a dramedy, a farce, a sex comedy, a sensitive emotional drama, a cynical rom-com, a late-coming-of-age movie. It's pretty good at all of them, if not outstanding at any. The movie is anchored by strong performances, particularly from Scott, proving he can carry a movie. Scott is an understated actor, and A.C.O.D. works best as a character study about Carter, whose attempts to keep the dueling halves of the family together keep backfiring on him. Instead of the man-child stereotype that is still so rampant in comedies, Carter is its converse — the overly responsible type-A guy. Carter is sort of the male version of that time-honored female rom-com character, the career girl whose emotional compass is wired completely wrong. Scott excels at playing struggling, but also at playing smug. In A.C.O.D. he's the former, surrounded by an extended family who fall into the latter category.
Kanye isn’t the only introspective, nation-dividing rapper who'll appear in Anchorman 2. A befro'd Drizzy Drake will also appear, flexing those Degrassi acting chops for the first time in a minute. He elaborated the casting process to Chelsea Handler thusly: "Anchorman was a huge part of my life. I used to have this car that would allow you to play DVDs illegally through the front dash. [Editor's note: Drake, what?] ... No music, just, like, Anchorman consistently looping over and over and over. So people would get in my car and you'd be mid–sex panther scene in Anchorman. So I asked [Will Ferrell] if I could do it and him and [Adam McKay] were phenomenal about it. They let me be part of the scene, I got to improv, I got to interact with [Christina Applegate] and [Ferrell] and I got to look like Blue Ivy, '70s." Process all that while you take in Drake's new "Hold On, We're Going Home" video, packed with gun-blasting, non-Kanye-inspired ski masks, A$AP Rocky cameos, and zero Drake–as–Blue Ivy looks.
The Emmys Are Become Death, Destroyer of In Memoriam Tributes
Alex Pappademas: I think if Cory Monteith were still alive, he'd have wanted his mom to find a way to for some reason get into an argument with the heirs of the late Jack Klugman via TMZ. But that's beside the point. I need to talk about this show's treatment not of individual deaths but of death itself. Knowing that there's an In Memoriam montage on deck has always been the thing that gets me through the slough-of-despondiest moments of even the most endless and joyless awards-show telecast. I don't even care who wins or loses. Give every award to Modern Family, even at the BET Awards. Dig up Jonas Salk and give his Presidential Medal of Freedom to Seth MacFarlane during the next Golden Globes — whatever, I don't care. Just bring out the dead. As long as I get to sit on the couch and watch my wife suddenly learn, thanks to this montage, of the often-not-recent deaths of at least five famous actors, and hear her say "[He/she] died?" with a pang of genuine sadness in her voice, I'll sit through travesties of justice and entertainment alike.
But this year's Emmy People Who Died montage reduced everyone to a black-and-white head shot, like a tribute assembled by a very bereaved dry cleaner. No clips? Not even in those very special spotlighted tributes to extra-iconic performers we're meant to feel extra-sad about, the Oneworld Elite Pass Dead People Club treatment that Jack Klugman was controversially denied, thus causing his spirit to roam the wastelands of Burbank in eternal torment forevermore?
Let's let erstwhile Rock & Roll Jeopardy! host Jeff Probst explain what's happening here: "Hello, everybody last year, we brought you what we were led to believe was the greatest event in television history: a shot-for-shot re-creation of the opening title sequence to the 1980s hit show Simon & Simon." (Remember? This? With Adam Scott and his buddy Mr. Jonny Hamm?) "Well, as it turns out, it wasn't the greatest event in television history." Pause. "Not even [beep]ing close." So what did we get this year? Adam Scott subbed out Hammy boy, picked up his Parks and Rec MVP teammate Amy Poehler and they did a shot-for-shot remake of the title sequence of Hart to Hart. I'm sorry? What's that? Your brains are all over your shoes? Cause they've exploded? Right through your nose? In other words: If you have a spare 20 minutes, watch this. Adam Scott is truly the greatest.
This is the full text of an article that was posted by E! Online today. It was accompanied by a picture of Taylor Swift making her way out of a vehicle. (Interpretive annotations are my own.)
Taylor Swift was spotted in Los Angeles on Wednesday as she made her way out of a vehicle. [Tell me more!]
Casually dressed [in a transparent effort to spite her tormentors], the country cutie stepped out on the same day [coincidence!?!?!?!?] that Tina Fey told a photographer to “go f--k yourself" [So not casual of her!] when asked about Swift's remark that she and Amy Poehler are destined for Hades. [Do you like how relevant these details are to Taylor getting out of that car?]
On Sunday night, the Screen Actors Guild gathered its members at L.A.'s Shrine Auditorium for its annual celebration of their shared craft, a delightful ceremony free of the annoying focus-pulling that plagues awards shows that insist on handing out statuettes to the unwashed masses who scratch out a living on the wrong side of the camera. Unfortunately, not every SAG Awards nominee gets to take home the coveted Actor, the highest honor thespians can receive from their brothers- and sisters-in-arms; for every five stars receiving the validation of a nomination, four will find themselves confronted with the challenge of making gritted teeth seem like a smile, and white-hot jealousy like warm magnanimity as the cameras mercilessly probe their reactions for any sign of disappointment. And so here we are, the morning after the Saggies (they don't call them the Saggies, but they should), to relive last night's victories through the faces of the defeated. When you're this good at your job, you can make misery look a lot like triumph. Well, most of the time.
After seven years, several serious-ish boyfriends, and countless offscreen episodes of TGS, Liz Lemon is a married woman. Last week's 30 Rock saw Liz making it legal with handsome slacker boyfriend Criss Chros (James Marsden). Liz eschewed her original plan to elope in sweats at City Hall in favor of a more formal event, replete with Tony Bennett and a Princess Leia bridal gown. You'll have to forgive me for replicating the famous Lemon eye-roll when I learned that Liz had secret white-wedding fantasies concealed under all her anti-romance bluster. It was somewhat trying to watch Liz realize that her tireless hatred of the culturally enforced marriage-industrial complex was a defensive reaction to her true heart's deepest wish, which just happened to be a ceremony like the ones on Bravo's Wedding Bitches. I found myself rooting for witness Dennis Duffy (Dean Winters) to pound on some glass and break up the wedding, The Graduate–style.
Sometimes, an idea seems to make so much sense that you can't really say anything other than yes, that makes so much sense. For example: NBC announced yesterday that power duo Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, the twin rocks of its Thursday-night comedy lineup, will host the network's broadcast of this January's Golden Globes. The two crushed it together for two years on "Weekend Update," then got back together in 2008 to crush it in Baby Mama. Now they're both crushing it independently, on 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation, while getting back together on various award-show stages to crush it from time to time.
Every week in this space, Grantland’s Andy Greenwald will run down the happenings and mishappenings in NBC’s Thursday comedy night done mostly right. (Note: The order reflects newsworthiness, not quality. Although occasionally the two just might overlap.)
1. The Office
As if powered by a Pawnee-esque serving of Dwight’s vomitous blue energy drink, the momentum of last week’s final-season premiere carried through last night’s cold open. The quick degradation of the chore wheel into a much more exciting fun wheel (cue Erin sound effect) was everything that was and is still delightful about The Office: a gaggle of brightly drawn, warmly familiar characters elevating the mundane into absurdist glee. (Who would mind scrubbing the toilets if a tiny piece of circular cardboard commands it?)
Blake Lively & Ryan Reynolds: "With its 300-year-old moss-draped oak trees and stately, columned mansion, the Boone Hall Plantation & Gardens in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, is a favorite venue for couples tying the knot. But it wasn't just the charming post-and-rail fences and lush lawns that appealed to the couple saying 'I do' there September 9th."
Was it the historic slave quarters then? Boone Hall's website seriously boasts about the "eight original slave cabins" and the road in front of the plantation property is quaintly named "Slave Street." I personally find the whole idea of getting married at a Southern plantation totally tacky and repulsive on a soul level, but hey, I'm not Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds.
Well, this one hurts. People reports that Amy Poehler and Will Arnett — two hilarious, attractive, and, above all, normal-seeming people — have split up after nine years of marriage. What?! Nooooo, etc.