Someday Melissa McCarthy will be a good 'SNL' host. Her name will be mentioned alongside recent 'SNL' hosting phenoms like Jon Hamm and Justin Timberlake. Hell, if given some better than average material last night to back up her deliveries, we may already be mentioning her name as part of this class. Unfortunately, McCarthy did what she could with a writing staff that seemed to take the week off from writing anything interesting and, instead, just gave her a few sketches that resembled poor man's clones of 'Bridesmaids.' To be fair, this was probably to be expected with her first outing immediately following her breakthrough comedy role. But, now that this is out of the way, hopefully, next time, the writing staff will giver her more things to do than pour food on her head and have her fall down a flight of stairs. Alas, on to the scorecard...
I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who has been breathlessly anticipating Sit Down, Shut Up (premiering on FOX Sunday at 8:30 PM ET), the newest series from Arrested Development creator Mitch Hurwitz. SDSU is an animated series based on a live-action Australian show by the same name. It follows a group of under-performing teachers at a Florida high school.
The teachers are all flaky, disinterested in their students, and with the exception of Larry Littlejunk (Jason Bateman), highly under-qualified for their positions. An example? Miracle Grohe (Kristen Chenoweth), the science teacher, beat Larry out of the job by stripping off all her clothes and yelling, "I ain't come from no monkey!"
The humor manages to be both broad and subtle at the same time, much in the way Arrested Development managed to be. However, though Bateman himself calls this show an animated version of AD, that's overstating it a bit. Sit Down, Shut Up, is more like Arrested Development's annoying younger brother.
The new show is Sit Down, Shut Up, an animated series that debuts April 19th at 8:30 PM, in between The Simpsons and Family Guy.
"It's funny, this is a show that I actually wrote in the year 2000, and it was an adaptation of a live-action show from Australia," Hurwitz said in a recent conference call. "I kind of kept it in the drawer for a long time, and finally brought it out, mostly because I needed money, which - I enjoy money, and I also use it for all sorts of different things in my life, but mostly for food and shelter."
While Amy Poehler has had steady work both on and off the stage of Saturday Night Live over the last few years it looks like she may be moving up to "big time" status along with former SNL cast mate Tina Fey. And, it might all begin this weekend. Not only is she starring with Fey in the movie Baby Mama, which is being released today (and is expected to be the box office champ, despite mixed reviews), Poehler also has a new cartoon premiering on Nickelodeon.
The Mighty B, which premieres Saturday at 10:30 AM, features Amy as the voice of Bessie Higgenbottom. Bessie is world's most ambitious Honeybee scout in the known universe. She wears her uniform all of the time, leads her troop with a military-like zeal, and has the most badges than any other Honeybee in history. But, she wants to earn all of the Honeybee badges, and she's determined to earn them. Sometimes she imagines herself as the superheroine The Mighty B, to help her through the tasks that will earn her another badge.
In today's Washington Post, Saturday Night Live kingpin Lorne Michaels defended his choice of Fred Armisen to play Barack Obama, starting with last week's episode. After the much-publicized search for an Obama impersonator (or Fauxbama, as some are calling it), Michaels decided on Armisen, who is of white and Asian origin. Armisen, who's talented enough to do excellent imitations of people ranging from Prince to Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, did a credible job playing Obama, a man who is somewhat hard to pin down, imitation-wise.
But some critics, including the Chicago Tribune's Maureen Ryan, have very bluntly wondered why an African-American didn't play Obama. "They couldn't find an African-American performer who was funny enough to play the junior senator from Illinois? They couldn't find one in New York? Not anywhere in the country? Really?" wrote Ryan on her Tribune blog.
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