This will be Martin's third time hosting the Oscars. He was last seen on the Kodak stage in 2003, which went on to become the lowest-rated Oscar telecast ever to that point (it was later "topped" by Jon Stewart in 2008). Baldwin has never hosted, although he did receive a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for the 2003 film 'The Cooler.'
Baldwin and Martin can also be seen in the upcoming Nancy Meyers comedy, 'It's Complicated,' due in theaters this December.
Choosing these two guys, however, is not complicated. It's actually pretty damn clever. Both men are very funny, very comfortable in the moment -- a necessity for a complicated show like the Oscars when anything can go wrong -- and they bring a lot of good will and star power to the proceedings.
- G.I. Joe may have won the weekend box office, but when I was at my local theater on Saturday afternoon, I didn't hear one person in line ask for tickets to see it. So why did people stay away? Check out the review here.
- Cinematical is asking a lot of questions this weekend. The first of which is, what is your favorite John Hughes memory?
- Also, What happened to Rene Russo? I can't think of anything offhand that I've seen her in since The Thomas Crown Affair.
- How can Barbarella not be campy? Cinematical explains-- kinda.
- I saw the trailer for It's Complicated in front of Julie and Julia this weekend. It stars Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin, and makes me hope that there will be more movies for the over-50 crowd. Cinematical seems to be cautiously optimistic about it.
Anyway, I had predicted that the Oscars would stink. Well, I was wrong, or half-wrong. Separate from whether you agreed with the winners -- I did by and large -- or you didn't, what about the broadcast? I think if you had seen all the nominees (or at least the Best Picture noms), you probably had a rooting interest and were amused by most of the show. However, the other half was pretty bad. After the jump, what worked versus what did not.
(S34E14) This episode marked Steve Martin's 15th time hosting and one millionth appearance on SNL. My expectations are always a high for a returning show-favorite, as I picture the whole week of writing and rehearsals to be a wild, wild party praising the host and, between celebratory keg stands, they write bang-up material that uses the host to their full potential. Yes, it's my own fault for thinking like that because I'm inevitably let down, but every once in a while there's a hit. This episode was all right in general, but it certainly wasn't worthy of Steve Martin. Here are some video highlights from the night.
While taping The Bonnie Hunt Show, Donny Osmond announced that he's doing Dancing With the Stars, the new edition that commences in March.
Oops! See, it wasn't Donny's job to make the announcement. He was supposed to let ABC decide the right time to reveal the lineup of celebrity dancers, although whether they can dance before the show begins is debatable.
Obviously, he'll be there to promote the Pink Panther sequel and his new Banjo CD. Once again I will put on my old person's hat and recall the times he hosted in my youth and how funny he was back then. While he obviously doesn't have the vigor of youth anymore, he has the sort of stage presence and timing that livens up the sort of comedy that SNL does (even when the sketch itself is lame). He's a better sketch performer than most of the current cast.
I loved the irony and intellectualism of the stand-up comedy of Martin's early career. I hope he returns to it some day and does an HBO special like Robin Williams did in 2002.
Is there any other show on television that jam-packs as many jokes as 30 Rock does? And it's not one of those situations where they fire off 50 jokes and only 5 of them are really funny, 25 are just OK, and 20 are really terrible. Almost all of the jokes on this show work on some level. Ordinarily, I would worry about some sort of burnout, but here we are five episodes into the third season and the show is still in top form.
More big name guest stars this week: Steve Martin and a certain famous art collector/yeller.
The third season of the show won't bow until October 30, but you would think that the show would want to launch a week or two earlier because of all of the attention that Tina Fey is getting for her Sarah Palin impersonation on Saturday Night Live, her Emmy win, and her new mega-million dollar book deal. So how come the show hasn't premiered yet? They must have an episode or two done for the new season.
Another week, another guest star announced for NBC's 30 Rock. But this is one I'm actually looking forward to.
Actually, I'm looking forward to all of the guest stars that have been announced for 30 Rock this season (OK, maybe not so much the Gossip Girl cast), including Jennifer Aniston and Oprah Winfrey. But this one seems particularly impressive and funny. Steve Martin will appear on the Thursday night comedy.
Hopefully the gelt you received this past holiday season hasn't been all used up on paying your credit card bills for the gifts you gave this holiday season. That's because there are a number of books about television that you could be using that free money towards. There are books about TV shows, books about TV characters, books written by TV characters, and just general television history books. There are so many books about television already out or about to be released that you could easily spend countless hours reading them on the steps of your local library after the nuclear holocaust.
Just don't break your glasses.
So, here are eight titles to get you started.
Saturday's episode, hosted by Alec Baldwin, set the record for guest cameos: Tracy Morgan, Tina Fey, Steve Martin, Martin Short, Tony Bennett, and Paul McCartney all showed up to help bring some juice to what turned out to be a middling episode (the Nancy Pelosi sketch and the Baldwin/Martin sketch were good, as was Alec's line, "Bobby McFerrin raped my grandmother," but that was about it). Some of the participants, like Short and McCartney, were true surprises, but the others weren't. Why? Because NBC's promotions department are a bunch of putzes, that's why.
I suppose by now I should have been prepared for this. Prepared to be let down... again. You wait for something and build it up in your mind and when you finally get it, it's so far from what you imagined you feel like you've been duped (although I think the technical term for that now is "James Frey-ed"). Am I painting a clear picture? Talk about a disappointment. This feels worse than finding out Santa Claus doesn't exist while at the same moment receiving a call from your doctor confirming your gonorrhea diagnosis.
Cold Open - See, now this was misleading, because I thought this was hilarious. It was a pre-taped segment where Steve Martin was on a date with Kelly Ripa. It seems her and Steve have been involved for a while and that she had plans to leave her husband for him. So Steve pops some Viagra. Subsequently, his ETB ("estimated time to boner") clock pops up. Suddenly he receives a call informing him that Alec Baldwin is going to host SNL tonight and break Steve's hosting record. He rushes to the NBC building, sneaks inside Baldwin's dressing room, strangles him, wraps him in some carpet, and chucks the body out a window where it lands on the Rockefeller ice rink. Favorite part? Steve rushes by Lorne with the body while Lorne stresses about not being able to find Baldwin. He tells Will Forte to get Tom Hanks on the phone. At this point, Steve punched Lorne. Doesn't that sound funny? Too bad they couldn't keep it up.
Prince will be the musical guest (I'm trying to think of some sort of Prince-like squeal to express happiness but I can't figure out how to spell it). I hope he and Fred Armisen (who sometimes plays him on the show) will do something together... Hey, maybe Steve Martin can bring Beyonce (his co-star in the new movie, The Pink Panther) to fill in for new mommy Maya Rudolph and Prince can fill in for Armisen! That way, they'd have a real "The Prince Show"! Oh man, that'd be twelve different kinds of awesome.
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