During Sunday’s NFL Playoffs coverage on Fox, did we really need a slow motion replay of Brett Favre putting on his helmet? With the telestrator for emphasis? Guys, please, it’s too much; bring it down a bit, huh?
News events don’t need titles and theme music. If the event is important enough, it carries its own drama, and doesn’t need cheesy production values. If it doesn’t, then what’s the point?
Since I still remember the halcyon days of the mid-1970′s when Saturday Night Live was funny, I occasionally tune in to see if they’ve recaptured any of the early fire. They haven’t. This past week’s show, with Jennifer Anniston, was not funny. At all. Even a little. Which wouldn’t be so bad, as there are a lot of things on television that aren’t funny. But what made it intolerable was the “I’m so funny I can barely keep from laughing during the skit” pompousness of the cast. These folks really think they’re funny, which makes the unimaginative writing and offhand, pedestrian performances even more offensive.
Fortunately, the show was followed by an old episode from 1976 with Candice Bergen and Frank Zappa. Gilda Radner was at the height of her powers as a performer then, ad-libbing and covering for Candice Bergen’s flub in the “Support the Rights of the Extremely Stupid” skit; a thing of beauty. The holiday song entitled “Let’s Kill Gary Gilmore for Christmas”, that was genius. The live audience reaction of groans, gasps and laughter was just priceless. Classic.
I liked “The Simpsons” more for some reason back when the animation wasn’t quite as polished as it is now. I know that doesn’t make complete sense, but I just think the slightly rough-edged look matched the offbeat quirkiness of the characters.