Friday, January 06, 2017

TV used to be weird, or you got queso in my peanut butter

I'm amusing myself during a freakish spell of downtime at work by looking at the list of past hosts and musical guests of Saturday Night Live. Some of them are hilariously odd pairings, for good, bad, ridiculous, or evil, until the late '90s when the combination of host and music becomes mostly very, very dull and stays that way permanently. (It really seems like a computer program is choosing the hosts and bands now. ) Seriously, like 85% of the combinations until the late '90s make me laugh and seem like throwaway gags from a vintage Simpsons episode, especially if you imagine them jamming together. (Also, Leon Redbone was the musical guest on roughly every fifth episode for the first seven years of the show.) These are the ones that jumped out at me (to be read in Don Pardo's voice):

Robert Klein and ABBA
Ron Nessen (Gerald Ford's press secretary) and the Patti Smith Group
Fran Tarkenton and Leo Sayer
Broderick Crawford and Levon Helm
O.J. Simpson and Ashford & Simpson
Christopher Lee and Meat Loaf
Buck Henry and Sun Ra
Fred Willard and Devo
Michael Palin and The Doobie Brothers
Milton Berle and Ornette Coleman
Ted Knight and Desmond Child & Rouge
Bea Arthur and The Roches
Rodney Dangerfield and The J. Geils Band
Strother Martin and The Specials
Bob Newhart and The Amazing Rhythm Aces
Elliott Gould and Kid Creole & The Coconuts
Malcolm McDowell and Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band
Donald Pleasence and Fear
Robert Culp and The Charlie Daniels Band
Danny DeVito and Sparks
Ron Howard and The Clash
Howard Hesseman and Men At Work
Robert Blake and Kenny Loggins
Joan Rivers and Musical Youth
Ed Koch and Dexys Midnight Runners
Jerry Lewis and Loverboy
George McGovern and Madness
George Carlin and Frankie Goes to Hollywood
Ed Asner and The Kinks
Mr. T & Hulk Hogan and The Commodores
John Lithgow and Mr. Mister
Harry Dean Stanton and The Replacements (fuck yeah)
George Wendt and Philip Glass
Tony Danza and Laurie Anderson
Jimmy Breslin, "Marvelous" Marvin Hagler and Level 42 (?????)
Dabney Coleman and The Cars
Robert Mitchum and Simply Red (LOL)
Fred Savage and Technotronic
George Steinbrenner and The Time
Joe Mantegna and Vanilla Ice
Jeremy Irons and Fishbone
Steven Seagal and Michael Bolton
Jeff Daniels and Color Me Badd
Macaulay Culkin and Tin Machine
Joe Pesci and Spin Doctors
Sinbad and Sade
Charles Barkley and Nirvana
Charlton Heston and Paul Westerberg
Martin Lawrence and Crash Test Dummies
George Foreman and Hole
Danny Aiello and Coolio
Tom Arnold and 2Pac
Steve Forbes and Rage Against the Machine
Bill Pullman and New Edition
Sylvester Stallone and Jamiroquai
Rudy Giuliani and Sarah McLachlan
Nathan Lane and Metallica
John McCain and The White Stripes
Donald Trump and Toots & The Maytals (no longer funny thanks to our horrible future, also a big fuck you to SNL for having him host last year)