Sunday, July 10, 2016

TV: Grading Maya & Marty

Last week's "TV: Summer flush" resulted in e-mails asking if we'd forgotten MAYA & MARTY?



We'd already weighed in when the show started.

Our plan was to give an update when the show was about to wrap up.

Which is this Tuesday, July 12 with guests Sean Hayes, Steve Martin, Kelly Ripa and Emma Stone joining hosts Maya Rudolph and Martin Short.

Episode six will hopefully be a strong one.

Each episode except the debut has been worth watching.

But a few questions emerge.

We're glad that after the first episode, efforts to be SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE were quickly dropped.

But we don't understand why Maya wasn't revisting her characters?

The show greatly benefited from Martin reviving celebrity interviewer Jiminy Glick -- in fact, Jiminy was often the high point of the show.

We don't think the show would have suffered from Maya reviving some of her previously created characters such as Sheldon, Donatella Versace or Bronx Beat's Jodi -- especially when Amy Poehler dropped by.

In fact, Amy quickly established herself as one of the show's best guests by being both willing and silly.

Tina Fey?

We nearly hit the roof on Tina.

We give her credit for being game.

But Tina Fey, wet dream of 1000 faux lefties, isn't a lefty.

And that's okay, she doesn't have to be.

But both she and her fans are convinced she is.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

The right-wing, conservative Bible thumper virgin that she was well into her early 20s forms her 'humor.'

And that's why she's not left wing.

Men are normal, women are sub-species.

That is Tina's comedy.

And it marred what was a nice -- not incredible -- segment.

She and Maya sat down on (overly high) barstools to sing a medley of songs in their salute to past variety shows.

Tina's 'shout out' to Vicki Lawrence came off sarcastic -- which is why the audience laughed at it.

But that could have been moved along and forgotten.

But they decided to mock a singer-songwriter in the skit.

And Tina went with Joni Mitchell.

She's been working a grudge f**k against Joni for some time.

To ridicule a great singer-songwriter, it's no surprise that Tina would go after a woman.

Joni has many talented female peers -- equally talented.

But Joni's the only woman that the male canon has deigned to include.

And there was Tina marring a silly (and useless) piece of fluff by going after Joni Mitchell.

Coz Tina hates women.

And no one apparently -- we mean you, Maya -- had the good sense to tell her no.

You'd think Joni recovering from a brain aneurysm would rope her off from mockery at least temporarily.

Now that we know the Tina Fey rules, we can't wait for Tina's health problems so we can go to town on her.

The only thing possibly worse than Tina Fey -- who did this same bit on 30 ROCK and it was evil then too (not just unfunny, evil) -- would be idiots like Moze Halperin at FLAVOR WIRE who praised it.

Tina's bit is, to do Joni, all you do is mention a baby and a town in Canada.


There are two prominent baby songs in Joni's songs -- "Little Green" about giving up her child for adoption (BLUE) and "Chinese Cafe/Unchained Melody" (WILD THINGS RUN FAST) ("my child's a stranger/I bore her but I could not raise her").

We're really not getting how making fun of a young woman's decision when she finds herself unwed and pregnant is 'funny' or 'pro-woman.'

It's certainly not feminism.

It's also not accurate.

Two songs.


Out of 19 studio albums, she's got two songs.

And there's Tina with her false nonsense getting laughs.

At a woman recovering from a brain aneurysm.

Tina's whole career rests on the fact that she's a woman.

Were she a man, she'd have no career.

She hasn't had a real hit movie her entire career and even Jon Lovitz was a bigger ratings draw than her 30 ROCK.

She periodically gets applause for being  a funny . . . woman.

And here she is trashing the preeminent female musician of the second half of the 20th century in a skit that does not go after Bob Dylan or any male sacred cows.

Because Tina hates women.

She was raised to hate her gender and it's her entire shtick.

It's disgusting.

And shame on Maya.

Maya was a bit of bitch in that little skit herself.

At one point, Tina's mocking Charo (who at least is healthy) and Maya said to watch the accent.  She said it with a glower, still smarting from the previous week's falll out and criticism when she mocked a woman for the way she spoke.

It was ugly and it was disgusting, the whole skit.

And word to Maya, being half-White and half-African-American does not give you a pass on racism. You need to curtail the 'ethnic' mockery of Latinas.

Maya seems to think it's cute and funny.

It's not.

One of us (Ava) is Latina and, trust us, Latinas are not applauding your insulting and racist skits about them.

Not one bit.

Marty's used the five episodes to build up good will.

And it's why he can -- and does -- say stupid stuff in the opening and get laughs for it -- more for his exuberance than for the words themselves.

As the show's moved away from trying to be SNL in prime time, it's found its footing.

The closing segment has become Maya at the piano singing with Marty and Kenan Thompson and it's one of the better segments each week.

They've also, thankfully, stopped attempting political humor which is both beyond their range and beyond the range of a variety show.

The skits have instead been celebrity parodies or attempts to make us laugh at exaggerated slices of life.

They've found a template for the show and delivered strong moments with guests such as Miley Cyrus, Nathan Lane, Cecily Strong, Ana Gasteyer, Amy Poehler, John Cena, Sean Hayes, Nick Jones, Steve Martin, Kevin Hart, Ricky Gervais, Jerry Seinfeld and featured regular Mikey Day.

There have been bumps as the show found its footing but it's finally delivering and NBC should strongly consider a second season -- summer or otherwise.

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