Saturday Night Live: Season 5, 1979-1980
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1. The quality of the show definitely begins to wane here, although come 1980-81, it was easy to render this season brilliant by comparison. With the Not Ready for Primetime Players pared down to five, heavy reliance upon Harry Shearer, Fr. Guido Sarducci (Don Novello), Franken & Davis, Mr. Bill (Walter Williams) and Paul Schaffer grows. Although all talented in their own right, they don't quite fill the void. Gone are the beloved Festrunk Brothers, The Coneheads, The Bees, Point Counterpoint, the Samurai, The Blues Brothers and the brilliant Olympia Café. The good news is that Bill Murray becomes a major powerhouse/focal point, returning with the ever-engaging Stargazer, Nerds and Nick the Lounge Singer bits. Gilda Radner is also a force, bringing back classics like Judy Miller and Rosanne Rosanadana.
2. Highlight sketches - the trademark, vintage SNL style is still firmly in place, and the show (unlike today) wasn't afraid to showcase quieter, ensemble, subtly comedic, human interest pieces, such as a teacher's union meeting sketch from the Martin Sheen episode, or "Aunt Judy's Basement" from the Bea Arthur show (premise: grown, adult "kids" forced to eat at the "children's table" during a family gathering).Read more ›
For me this final season of the "first era" of SNL illustrated perfectly everything that was right and (sadly) everything that went wrong with what many call the "golden" years. You get sublime musical performances by acts like the B-52s and the J. Geils Band along with some nightmare appearances like the frog croaking of Marianne Faithful. Although many bemoan the exit of old cast members, some of the recurring skits (most notably the Nerds) get long in the tooth and lose their humor. It's difficult to maintain one-dimensional characters without running them into the ground and one of the reasons we remember the Coneheads and Samurai characters so well is because we were left wanting more. Unlike many who look at their absence as a great loss, I'm grateful that the actors left before repetitive usage of the same ideas reduced classic characters to the hell of long and unfunny bits that wind up going nowhere.
This is the season that much of America became better acquainted with a few of the people that toiled in the background during the first 4 years. Al Franken and Tom Davis, long involved with the writing of the show, emerge with greater onscreen presence and it lays the groundwork for a lot of the work Franken in particular did later. Brian Doyle Murray, forever consigned to stand in the long shadow cast by his brother Bill, is perhaps the most consistent performer the show will ever see. Even during the most meandering sketches, Brian delivers his lines with confidence and a stronger sense of timing than the rest of the cast. He never loses his place, never flubs a line, and almost never stutters.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Haven't watched it yet, as I had ordered the other 4 seasons, so have to watch it from the beginning! Read morePublished 3 months ago by ck
The orginal cast was the very best. Still funny after all these years.Published 5 months ago by Mlcarr1
|Topic||From this Discussion|
|SNL season 6?||
According to the SNL Archives Website Eddie Murphy was a cast member in Season 6 along with Joe Piscapo.
Dec 31, 2009 by Mr. x | See all 26 posts
|Do the shows include the "Bumpers" pics used to come back from commercial?||
I highly doubt it, although I haven't picked this one up yet. None of the other seasons have them. Although they have the little stingers that come right before commercial break (where you see the cast run off the stage, the camera pulls back to show the audience and some humorous little caption... Read More
Jan 6, 2010 by billymac72 | See all 9 posts
|Does anyone know what season Jr. Walker and the Allstars appeared on SNL?||
Season six Episode 13. The last episode of the season that shouldn't have been... but the music was great.
Feb 24, 2015 by E.Z. | See all 2 posts
Dec 7, 2009 by LombaireFan | See all 5 posts
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