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Thread: MADtv or SNL?

  1. #1

    MADtv or SNL?

    I'd have to say that MAD has my favour these days. I used to be such a HUGE SNL fan from 1979 (when I discovered it by accident) until about 1989. After that I thought the sketches were a bit boring and the cast members not that talented. It seemed to have lost a lot of its edge as well. I tuned into SNL the other night just to catch my girl KYLIE and was dumbstruck at how awful the show was again.

    The humour on MAD is really edgy and they take a lot of risks. It echoes a lot of the experimental humour of the original SNL cast. I love some of the characters on MAD as well. Ms. Swan, Antonia, Stuart, Rusty and Debra Wilson's spot on imitation of Whintey Houston are among the best in recent history. I find these characters to be as funny and developed as SNL characters were in the early days. New cast member Stephanie Weir, as homely as she is, is a fantastic addition to the cast. What that girl can do with her face is amazing (if not frightening).

    Because of this, I tune in every Saturday night at 23h and whenever I can catch the reruns.
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  2. #2
    mabudonicus's Avatar
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    Yeah, Mad TV is better overall nowadays IMO. The main thing that it has over SNL is (usually) BREVITY. They'll make a sketch with one joke in it 30 seconds long, instead of making every thought from every brainstorming session into an 8 minute "sketch"(more like a wall sized mural in many ways). The simpsons have referenced this trend a few times, and when a form of comedy is such an easy target for parody, it really makes ya wonder. I like the fake movie ads/trailers on Mad. And I laugh every time I recall "Clintfeld"(I despised seinfeld, and thought that particular take on the rigid formatting was brilliant)
    Something about him reminds me of my older brother, Rex.

  3. #3
    Registered SWAFMAN's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    Great thread idea JEDIpartnr

    Agreed! MADtv is the funnier, more entertaining show, in my opinion. SNL, in my opinion, has been getting progressively worse for several years. Being a boring old fart, I'm usually home on Saturday nights. I usually watch MADtv, surfing to SNL during MAD's commercials, then trying to tolerate the last 1/2-hour of SNL(which has traditionally been their lamest segment, I've always thought) after MADtv ends, and sometimes I've just had to switch it off because it was so bad.

    It really makes me sad to see SNL get so pathetic. I've been watching since the first show of the first season, which I think was either 1976 or 77, based on where I was living at that time. I remember hating Bill Murray for no good reason other than he joined the cast as Chevy Chase was leaving, which was not at all Murray's fault. I lived in LA when Belushi died at the Chateau Marmont, and I was just totally grief-stricken when a co-worker told me of it. Over the years, and the cast changes, I think they've had maybe two other ensembles that were as entertaining as the original season cast, but there have been years and years of sub-par writing and acting. This latest guy, the heavyset one whose trademark character just acts stoned and gigggles all the time - what's up with that? This is the pinnacle of nearly thirty years of comic evolution? Gimme a break.

    MADtv, as you said, takes more risks (maybe they can, due to the historically lax-er censors at FOX?). I don't like every sketch or recurring character on MADtv, but on balance, I enjoy more of their product than SNL. Lorne Michaels really ought to consider wrapping the show, or handing it over to another team for a total reworking. New studio, new set, replace every single person associated with the production. Maybe move it to Chicago or LA?

    (just my thoughts... )
    "We have enough youth. We need a fountain of SMART!"

  4. #4
    I have just the opposite opinion. When MADTV first came out it was definitely way funnier than SNL. Since then all the OG cast has left except for Wilson and what is left sure isn't that funny, except for Will Sasso. Ms. Swan is now just a sad shell of a skit with the same predictable situations. While they do have pretty funny stuff, most of it is really raunchy which shows that the writers are running out of ideas and are getting desperate.

    SNL has gotten better IMO the past few seasons except for this one. For some reason nothing is really that great. Even the cartoons have been LAME. Every so often SNL seems to resurrect itself so I'm hoping another cast purge is coming soon.
    "I'm just a YES man trying to make my way in the universe." - Jango McCallum

    "Good dialogue and smooth editing are no match for a good YES man by your side, kid." - George Lucas

  5. #5
    Registered SWAFMAN's Avatar
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    ManCan, as I was reading your post, I wondered if the overall drop in humor quality (IMO) can be, at least in part, tied to the lingering feelings of seriousness we're all having since last September, and through this ongoing war.

    The fact is, SNL started after Vietnam was over, and Desert Storm went pretty damn fast and well for America, so there wasn't any undercurrent of sorrow connected to it, that I ever perceived. But Sept. 11th left an open wound in my heart, and I'd venture to guess it did in others, as well. Could it be that, especially the SNL writers - with their obvious super-close ties to the tragedy, are still having some difficulty finding their funny-bone again?

    I also agree that MADtv has slid a bit recently, but as I said before, on balance and IMO, it is the funnier of the two shows these days.

    I also wonder if the average viewer's tastes in humor are evolving faster (or just in a different direction) than the content of these shows. I have to admit that, as I get older, I'm more put-off by vulgar and/or sexually explicit comedy on free TV. Not because I don't find it amusing, but I just keep thinking about my teenage son seeing it, and I feel that is inappropriate. I've given my kids the best direction in life that I'm capable of, so I'm pretty trusting of their ability to make good choices about what they view and enjoy, but I still get uncomfortable with the networks' constant lowering of standards of decency. I also wonder if more and more Americans are wisening-up to the fact that the entertainment industry is NOT representative of the mainstream in the way they portray values and lifestyles, and that the industry is consciously activist in trying to move the mainstream to the left. I hope that is true, but I'm skeptical, based on what I've seen of the reasoning abilities of some folks. I am not saying I think there should be some puritanical shift to restrict free speech. I was laughing my butt off at South Park a couple nights ago, with that "IT" vehicle the teacher invented (it's less painful than air travel! That was dead-on!). But I think that the networks should take their obligation to respect the public airwaves (which are essentially a public trust) more seriously.

    The easy counter-argument is "if you don't like it, change the channel," or "it's your job as a parent to screen your kids' viewing." That's fine, and I accept that responsibility, but you can't even watch "The Price is Right" in the morning on a snow-day with your first-grader, without being blindsided by a commercial promo for a primetime newsmagazine about Priests Who Molest Children, or a sitcom with an overtly sexual sound bite. I'll happily address those issues with my kids. They are important. But I'd like to be the one to decide the time and place to do so.

    Okay, this turned into another Soapbox Derby by Swafman. Damn, I'm sorry about that.

    Again, maybe we're just not fully back in our humorous mood since last Septmeber?
    "We have enough youth. We need a fountain of SMART!"

  6. #6
    Kylie Minogue was AWESOME last week

    Hmmm, I don't know that I have a favorite here. I like some SNL sketches but the ones I don't like . . . well, I really don't like. As for MadTV, there's some great stuff, my favorite being their Sopranos episodes, edited for Pax

    I haven't given up on SNL yet, I like some of the current cast members so I stick with it to catch some good bits. I usually record the show and watch it on Sundays, so it's not like I need to sit throguh an hour and a half of it. MadTV I do not watch nearly as often, but I'm sure I'm missing a lot.

  7. #7
    I still watch SNL for the cartoons and news reports they show, but thats about it.

  8. #8
    Dar' Argol's Avatar
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    I USE to be a HUGE SNL fan. Back when I was in high scool(90-94) when Dana Carvey, Mike Myers, Dennis Miller and the ilk were on. My friends and I met at someones house every Sat night and luaghed our butts off! Then people started to leave and it was still ok. Then more left and , ok, it still kinda funny. Now I have not watched it in 3 years. I think the only original member from when I watched is Tim Medows(if he's still there). I am now a hugh MADTV fan. They have the fomula that SNL once had. Their stuff is FUNNY!!! I think one of the other problems SNL suffers is commercials. I remember 3-4 skits b/4 a commercial, even more sometimes. And the skits were decent in length. Now it seems that after every 2 minute skit there's 5 minutes of commercials. This really annoys me. That's why I switched. Maybe if their writting was better, the jokes were actually FUNNY, and the commercials were alot I'd go back. I feal IMO that they have really gone down hill! But, until my pipe dream comes true and GL askes me to be in the next SW movie:

    "You are watching MADTTVVVVV . . . . . . . . . . MAD!
    Dar' is no longer "Live in Orlando" . . . he may "Not be in Orlando" either . . .
    You're slower than a herd of turtles stampeding through peanut butter.

  9. #9
    For me, these days this thread's question is like choosing between cow flop and horse crap. However, given a choice, I think both shows have pretty weak casts and production teams, but SNL uses a rotating cast of celebrities in acting situations they're not used to, so that's somewhat interesting to me.

    I tuned in for Jon Stewart recently because he's funny and I wanted to see how he did with the live format and with a different style of comedy (I thought he stayed true to the material, but said material was far beneath the quality he deserves).
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    Kylo Ren - came from Space Brooklyn, although he moved to Space Williamsburg before it was trendy.

    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  10. #10
    SNL!!! Madtv has had a few funny things on there but, SNL is much better.
    Khoo-Ha...Please Pass The Jelly.


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