This week’s episode of Saturday Night Live might have been the best of the season so far*, and that was due in part to Joseph Gordon-Levitt, I guess, but man, that guy needs to RELAX. He was literally bouncing off the walls to prove to America that he was an “ENTERTAINER.” We get it, Joseph Gordon-Levitt! You are hosting Saturday Night Live! You are doing great! On the one hand, it was nice to see someone trying so hard after January Jones last week showed us all just what coasting on your looks actually looks like. But on the other hand, there is clearly an “uncanny valley” of effort, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt crossed it. Bill Maher New Rule: the host of Saturday Night Live should not be working so hard that the viewer begins sweating nervously. Anyway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s neediness and exertion aside, it was a pretty good show.

First and foremost, of course was the triumphant return of What Up With That?

Some monsters were suggesting that this sketch was “ripping off” Videogum’s own Teen Korner. It’s not. Duh. We all know that. But you can kind of see what those monsters are talking about!

And I know that this recurring sketch is very divisive, with people either enjoying it very much or the opposite of enjoying it very much, but I am in the former camp, and thus this sketch will get its due recognition. Besides, it didn’t even air for some reason, but they put it on-line, because sometimes NBC actually does know what is what. CONSIDER YOURSELF RECOGNIZED, SKETCH!

But probably the best of the episode was the Woman to Woman show:

Haaaa. Women be shoppin, indeed! Anyway, good job everyone. Even you, Gordon “Chill Pill (As In I Need A)” Joseph-Levitt.

*I am completely ignoring Dave Matthews (and all musical guests) in this calculation.

Comments (65)
  1. A few things:

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt did a great job hosting his high school?s variety show this weekend. He could really project his voice! Star of the drama club, for sure.

    After that digital short, is Kenan now the best cast member?

    Every time they do ?What Up with That,? the needle on my Jenny Slate crushometer goes into the red. (Did that sound dirty? Because IT WAS.)

  2. What do people think about the Jack Johnson sketch/sketches? Personally, I think they are kinda lazy and unfunny until the host steps in, as JGo’s (that is not a good nickname) episode, when he absolutely killed it as Jason Mraz and Dave Matthews did the same with Ozzy Osbourne. Lots of Loving happened.

    Also: Kenan has clearly made adjustments to his Dream Book and Goal Plan, because talk about killing it. And relax, Technojosephgordonlevitt is the best Vgum headline of all time.

    • pretty lazy, but i like when they admit they’re being lazy and just add in single-word non-sequiters like “hackysack.” in the middle of lines. …kindof like our gabe. : )

    • What about J Go-Lev? I’ve been trying to make that happen.

  3. Man, I am crushing hard on Joseph Gordon-Levitt. First “Brick”, now recreating my favorite musical number from my favorite movie musical? It’s not on Hulu, but look for the rest of his monologue on Youtube. He’s no Donald O’Connor but he does okay.

    I tend to be more of a fan of the stranger skits so I like the spaceship, Model T cars, toddlers, and jars of beer one. Talk about weird.

  4. what about the thanksgiving dinner scene? and how it was exactly the same as another familiar awkward family dinner skit… perhaps one where will ferrell is all like I DRIVE A DODGE STRATUS.

  5. Canadians can’t watch HULU. :(

    • I know you get it about the “Canadian’s can’t watch Hulu” thing and I don’t need to rewatch a bunch of stuff I watched a day and a half ago, but could the descriptions be a little more…descriptive? How can i share whether I very much enjoy or the opposite of very much enjoy that divisive recurring sketch?! I have no idea WTF it is!

    • where’s AMPAT? someone needs to understand how the world works.

  6. Every time he was just Joseph Gordon-Levitt he was awkwardly over-excited; he shook Al Gore’s hand so hard at the end of the show that he knocked his teeth all out of place. However, as other people have mentioned, he was quite good in the sketches, and the show was consistently funny for the first time in a while. Keenan’s delivery of lines such as “and a penis” and “swinging like my balls” in the digital short killed me.

    • I believe it was “Swingin’ like my nuts.”
      And while on the topic of nuts, I also really liked Sudeikis’ line:
      “This kids got balls the size of I don’t know what!”

  7. I thought Joseph Gordon-Levitt (aka My Future Husband) killed it on SNL. And as Gabe said, this might have been the best of the season so far. There were plenty of laffs! Even Kenan had me loling in my pants. But yeah, JGL kinda looked like he was on an epic sugar high. No more candy after 6pm, Joseph Gordon-Levitt!

    • Ha ha, you meant “kiss the pan’s,” not “my”! But I thought it was adorable how excited he was to be there. Even though he was sort of manic, he had enough talent to pull it off without getting on my nerves.

    • I feel like i should apologize for that downvote. It’s just that I was all high off of JGL reading through the post and the comments and the sudden mention of Blake Lively triggered some knee-jerk reaction of Serena hate in me. I don’t even fully understand it myself since I actually agree with you. For realz tho… Blake Lively? What up wit dat?

    • whoops! that was meant for your other comment. my bads!

  8. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was great, but was it me or did he sing in every sketch?

  9. Hey, do you guys know JGL could sing? Like, that he physically capable of making those song noises? You didn’t? Well, do I have the show for you!

    Shit was getting ridiculous, he sang in all but two sketches. I’m surprised he didn’t Jeff Dunham “In Your Eyes” in the Say Anything bit.

    • Thanks for reminding me of the “Say Anything” sketch. I thought that was great, but mostly due to Jason Sudeikis’ alternately douchey/good-natured neighbor bit. “Hey, look! Genesis just got back together!”

  10. So much energy from JGL! He must have had a bunch of Red Bulls before the show?! Nah, he just did a lot of coke.

  11. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was in the film Brick.

    That will be one medium order of Indie Cred, please sir. No, I’ll take it to go, thank you.

  12. Not enough Sudekis dancing in What Up With That.

  13. When are we going to adress the fact that stupidface BLAKE LIVELY is hosting the next SNL?

    • I feel like i should apologize for that downvote. It’s just that I was all high off of JGL reading through the post and the comments and the sudden mention of Blake Lively triggered some knee-jerk reaction of Serena hate in me. I don’t even fully understand it myself since I actually agree with you. For realz tho… Blake Lively? What up wit dat?

  14. Thank you for finally addressing the fact that this guy looked like he had taken speed or something before the show. Everyone was all, “He was so good!” And I was all, “He was so on drugs!!!” It was terrifying.

  15. thanks to videogum, whenever I see Al Gore I now focus on his tombstone teeth.

  16. I am loving that Al Gore has apparently decided to slay global climate change with professional-level comic timing. I thought he was very good in both What Up? and WU! He’ll have climate change rolling in the aisles!

  17. As much as I love you, JGL, Donald O’Connor is the only man who can perform “Make ‘Em Laugh.” Good work with the punches, Moynihan.

  18. I like to think that Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Topher Grace are friends. They have dinner parties where they play Jenga and talk about the latest episode of 30 Rock, and have “Terrible Movie Nights” and roll their eyes good naturedly when their girlfriends try to set up mutual friends. Also at least one of them (semi)ironically owns a Slanket. Sometimes they invite Zooey Deschanel and Ben Gibbard over for vegetarian enchilada night.

  19. I refuse to watch SNL until Victoria Jackson is hired back to do Weekend Update.

  20. I think that he was just really, really excited to be on the show. I remember an older episode of Loveline he was on, and dude was like FREAKING OUT with how excited he was (he had grown up listening to it and was a huge fan). A little overboard, maybe, but I think the guy just gets really excited about things that he’s passionate about. I find it refreshing. People don’t always have to play it cool all the time, Seriousgum, sometimes we’re allowed to be happy nerds!

  21. I know it’s a bit of the elephant in the room (due to videogum ad revenue) but when are going to get around to discuss “(500) days of Summer”? I seem to be the only one I know who was not into that movie.

  22. egg burps are pretty funky..
    whats the deal with that?

  23. More like Joseph Gordon-LOVE-IT, amiright??

  24. did anyone else catch a fancy-old-timey accent in his monologue? (even outside the song) …we like you but, RELAX

  25. also: mindy kaling! (that is all)

  26. The ‘Say Anything’ skit was definitely my fav of the night. Oh and his impression of Jason Mraz…but what was up with Andy Samberg’s Jack Johnson owner-of-the-kwik-e-mart accent?

  27. when i get back to the states i will return to every single post with hulu videos and watch every single one of them and it will be so masturbatory.

  28. SO MUCH SINGING! All episode long!
    But good job, JGL.

  29. Anyone else catch the god awfully racist sketch about the Chinese president? Caucasian Will Forte did his best “ching-chong” impression much to my chagrin.

    • the opening sketch was not only racist, it was completely fact free (laying the blame of the entire U.S. debt to China at Obama’s feet?!?!?) and flat-out unfunny…kinda like glenn beck’s show

  30. This show needs to quit while it’s still -20 years ahead.

  31. JGL’s performance had me going back and forth all show: one moment i was cringing (2/3rds of the opening number) and the next i was saying “bravo!” (1/3rd of his opening number — the backward flip parts that could’ve broken his neck). his singing entrance for the game show: cringing; his spanish accent: “hey, the kid’s pretty good.” ultimately, you gotta give it up for this 28 year old — he’s got chops, comedic, musical and dramatic (BRICK!!!!!!! -Netflix it NOW)

  32. It’s nice to see him employing the digs he received from his GQ photo shoot to good measure.

  33. Al Gore was amazing in the What’s Up segment. jesus. i watched it pretending that they told him this was a real show and that he had no idea he was on SNL.

  34. I was pretty high while watching this. Nevertheless, I totally noticed Andy Samberg’s impression of Jack Johnson with Gabe-like insertions of buzz words. Then the whole Jenny Slate-Gabe friendship thing occurred to me. Then I had some wine. Then I came to the conclusion that Andy Samberg reads Videogum now (probably!) per Jenny Slate’s recommendation. Kudos Gabe! Trendsetter (sort of!)

  35. I would have been (quite literally) bouncing off the walls too if I was hosting SNL. And what are the odds of him getting this chance again? It’s like complaining that someone’s Oscar speech was too emotional.

    • Yeah, seriously! How cool would it be to be hosting SNL?! I’d probably get all geeky and do “Make ‘Em Laugh” in an exasperatedly panting voice too, because ENTERTAINMENT!

      Congratulations, Tommy, the elderly-teenaged-alien from my adolescence! Proud of you.

  36. mutant_finger  |   Posted on Nov 25th, 2009 0

    joseph gordon levitt loves vests!

  37. yes  |   Posted on Nov 25th, 2009 0

    Can’t get enough Jason Sudeikis dancing. Seriously. How have I not been in love with this man for years?

  38. please hammer don't hurt him  |   Posted on Nov 25th, 2009 0

    Come on, he did backflips! That shit couldn’t have been easy with all the dancing and singing at the same time. He was so good!

  39. THIS was the best of the season? wow, I havnt watched SNL since the elections but for Joseph Gordon Levitt, sure why not, except there were Plenty of reasons why not. I know I’ve always been a MadTV fan, but theres no way to enjoy this show when one has experienced a glorious thursday line-up. Pretty much none of the skits were LOL funny or even smirky funny, other than the digital short and the Jack Johnson skit with Adam Samberg. Never Again.

  40. SNLs writing has been very bland…which is sad considering that many of the new cast members are extremely funny. the writing just sucks usually. JGL only seemed above-average energized because most of the skits now are below-average SNL funny. I thought he rocked. And I think it’d be a bit hard to be cracked out while live under pressure haha

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