Review: Saturday Night Live - Taylor Lautner/Bon Jovi
by Annie Wu, posted Dec 13th 2009 12:58PM
(S35E09) Hello, Twilight fans. I know you're only here because of your screaming hearts, thudding so hard that every beat is a case for internal bruising. I'm going to be upfront: I don't like Twilight. I tried reading it before it was a "thing" because my friends recommended it to me and I found myself struggling to get through it because, well, even then I knew it was embarrassing. I also watched the film, which I thought was very funny, though I realize that was probably not the intended effect.
That said, I thought Taylor Lautner did a great job. See? I'm not just swimming in haterade. Obviously, I wasn't prepared to like him, but just like Blake Lively from last week, Lautner delivered a strong performance. He seemed really comfortable throughout the entire episode and was surprisingly natural, more natural than some of the actual cast members at some points, at least in terms of blatantly looking at cue cards.
And thanks for keeping your shirt on for all 90 minutes, Sharkboy.
Unfortunately, the writing was kind of draggy for the most part this week. There were enjoyable parts, sure, but the rest fell flat. Also, the studio audience was really tough! Hopefully it was just the microphones not picking up on their laughs because there were some bits that made me laugh out loud and the studio audience just sounded dead silent, especially during the "Football Taping" sketch.
Monologue: Funny approach to a weird situation. I didn't even mind that the Kanye West/Taylor Swift incident was so three months ago. Lautner's delivery made me feel better that we weren't in for a choppy performance.
Eternal Spark of Love: God, this was ridiculous. Lautner played it really subtle, which was nice, and every time Kenan Thompson glided on- or off-screen was hilarious. However, this sketch further affirmed what we learned from Twilight: Lautner cannot pull off wigs.
The last bit of Surprise: I love Kristen Wiig, and I died the first time she did the Surprise Party character. The writers get really creative with the last parts of these sketches and make something spectacular, but it would be cool if they could shake up the first half, which has started to get extremely repetitive.
NOT SO GREAT STUFF
Show Choir: Bless their hearts for trying to save this, but I don't think I laughed once. Not even Andy Samberg's goofy face helped.
Football Taping: Only because no one was laughing and that kind of triggered some major second-hand embarrassment. I thought Lautner did a funny job with the material though.
Doorbells: Hey! They're letting Jenny Slate actually do stuff by herself now. This sketch had its moments; her character was interesting. Could someone ring Henry Higgins and confirm what the hell that accent was? And yeah, I just totally made a My Fair Lady reference. I'm that hip.
Slate and fellow new girl Nasim Pedrad have remarkably annoying go-to voices, by the way. It's like something about their voices resonates with my ears in a terrible, terrible way. Maybe it's not a problem for anyone else and my eardrums are just incompatible with their voices by nature. I'm going to pretend that's a thing.
Team Jacob vs. Team Edward: Oh, of course this had to be addressed. There could have been worse ways to bring up Twilight, so this was pretty all right. Jenny Slate plays teen well, and kudos to Lautner for not embarrassing himself by even trying to put on a girl voice.
No Jon Bovi: I'm not sure if it was a good or bad thing that there was no Jon Bovi this evening. It was the perfect opportunity, obviously, and most people were probably expecting it (at least a little), but I suppose it wasn't necessary. It was kind of like how there wasn't a "Prince Show" sketch even when Prince was the musical guest and Steve Martin was hosting, promoting a movie he was doing with Beyonce.