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Bill Burr Hosts 'SNL,' and He Bill Burrs All Over the Goddamn Place

By Dustin Rowles | TV | October 11, 2020 |

By Dustin Rowles | TV | October 11, 2020 |


Cold Open — The nice thing about a Vice Presidential debate that does not involve Donald Trump is that it’s actually not parody-proof, and Maya Rudolph and Beck Bennett do a terrific job of parodying Kamala and Mike Pence. This is parody! Do you remember it? If you elect Joe Biden, satire will live again! Not all of the skit is successful, mind you. The addition of Jim Carrey’s Joe Biden is completely unnecessary and idiotic. They just can’t help themselves, can they? Damnit. (Score: 7 out of 10 for the VP debate; 1 out of 10 for the pointless, unfunny Jim Carrey as Jeff Goldblum as The Fly asides).

Bill Burr Monologue — Bill Burr really straddles that fine line between funny and f**k you, doesn’t he? The mask jokes? Decent. The Moranis joke? Great. Cancel culture: F**k you. The whole bit on white women? Oh lord. The Pride month vs. Black History month? F*ck off, Burr. The whole monologue has some very, “I have a Black friend, so I can sh*t on women and gay people” energy. I mean, look: If you like Bill Burr, this is exactly why. If you don’t? This is exactly why. (Score: Ummm, yeah, no, not for me out of 10)

Social Distance Get Together — I thought the skit was going one place, and it went a completely different, not-all-together great place, where a married couple blows a gasket every time they are corrected for using the wrong word (e.g., “unpresidented” instead of “unprecedented.”) I thought they were gonna zig, and instead they crashed and burned. That this is the first skit of the night does not bode well for the rest of the show. Watch here. (Score: 3 out 10)

The Blitz — Bill Burr plays an NFL analyst on an NFL show who is taunting his co-anchor, only to realize that his co-anchor is not interested in talking about the football because another Black man has been killed by a police officer. For better or worse, it’s a very Bill Burr sketch (mostly for worse). I mean, how did this pitch go? “So, the idea is this: A white guy is giving a Black guy shit because he lost a bet, and the Black guy is upset because cops keeping murdering Black people, but the white guy pretends to feel bad, but he’s mostly just excited that the Bears won and he’s gonna rub his Black colleague’s face in it! It’s not really about race, see? Or about how Black people are always complaining about cops killing them. Because that would be tasteless. It’s really about the strange times we’re living in! Funny, right?!” Watch here. (Score: 3 out 10)

Enough is Enough — Beck Bennett plays a low-level actor who puts a tone-deaf anti-Trump song on Instagram only to be told repeatedly that it is pathetic and desperate, and that he needs to take it down immediately. It has a Jason Momoa cameo. It’s not enough to save it. (Score: 5 out 10)

Weekend Update — How do you make Colin Jost and Michael Che funny? Contrast them with Bill Burr! I kid, I kid: But for real, the Trump jokes at the top of “Update” killed, especially Che. “Trump surviving COVID is like the drunk driver being the only one that survived a car crash.” Exactly. Che and Jost going for broke here, telling jokes like this is their last season. Kate McKinnnon as Dr. WeKnowDis offering a second opinion on Trump, on the other hand, is terrible right up until Kate McKinnon completely loses it, strategically breaks character, and turns the whole segment on its head. Pete Davidson, meanwhile, tackles J.K. Rowling’s transphobia, and it’s pretty great, too. (Score: 8 out of 10)

Woke Crime Family — A Godfather-like figure goes away for 20 years and returns to find that the rest of his mafia family is woke. So, Bill Burr is hosting the show, and apparently, he also wrote a lot of it, too. All of his skits are about aggrieved white guys complaining about cancel/woke culture/gays/minorities, and there’s just enough self-deprecation in them that Burr can maintain plausible deniability when he’s called out on them. “I’m making fun of toxic masculinity!” Are you, Bill? Are you? (Watch Here) (Score: 4 out of 10)

Sam Adams Commercial — A Bill Burr Octoberfest ad is basically the spiritual successor to Casey Affleck’s Dunkin ad. It’s not as good, but aside from “Update,” it’s the best skit of the night. Mat, who probably has 5 or 6 year-old pumpkin-flavored beers sitting in his fridge that he’ll unload at someone else’s house at the first opportunity after the pandemic, will also like this one. Don’t bring that sh*t to my house, bro. (Score: 6.5 out of 10)

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.

Header Image Source: NBC