Spend all week waiting in line for Black Friday specials? Here's what you missed on TV.
More Live Than Usual
The last Saturday Night Live before a week off is often on the loose side, but the Jeremy Renner-hosted episode contained more than its usual share of technical malfunctions and cast mistakes. Fred Armisen completely losing the fight against a case of the giggles toward the end of the mock soap opera The Californians was kind of charming. But Renner's opening monologue's musical number never really recovered from a missed cue at the beginning, where the offscreen piano player completely missed where he was supposed to come in, grinding the whole bit to a dead stop.
A Bad Way To Go Out
Two weeks ago, in the first half of a two-part The Amazing Race set in Moscow, rockers James and Abba were ripped off by an unlicensed cabdriver who deliberately drove off with their backpacks, one of which contained Abba's passport. The concluding half set up the possibility that the entertainment lawyer could possibly get a replacement via the US embassy, but after an episode in which the pair were mostly filmed sullenly waiting for a phone call, they were eliminated from the race. Seriously, guys, when you travel, always keep your passport on your person at all times.
A Little Too Loose Onstage
Are the American Music Awards to the Grammys what the Golden Globes are to the Oscars? That is, the awards show where it's okay to get drunk before you go onstage? Presenter Eric Stonestreet certainly seemed a little sozzled when he presented the Country Female Artsist award to Taylor Swift, which he admitted later in the week on Jimmy Kimmel Live. No word on what the deal was when Jenny McCarthy went all cougar on Justin Bieber, to his clear disgust. Maybe he disagrees with her position on vaccines causing autism.
Everyone's A Critic
Paul Rudd's Broadway turn in the play Grace got splashed -- literally -- all over the New York gossip pages when a theatergoer vomited off the balcony into the audience below during a performance. Rudd appeared on The Late Show With David Letterman Monday night to deliver a self-deprecating Top Ten list related to the incident. My personal favorite: "Not my worst review."
Cross-Promotion Gone Awry
Remember a few weeks ago when an episode of CSI: New York was somewhat nonsensically scored with songs from the new Green Day album? Well, the producers of Revolution may have topped them: the same week that the Led Zeppelin live reunion album Celebration Day came out, seemingly every ad on NBC was promoting that this week's episode of Revolution would feature the music of Led Zeppelin. Which turned out to mean that we heard snatches of "Since I've Been Loving You" and "Kashmir" in what seemed like a filler episode set almost entirely in a network of Philadelphia subway tunnels. Big whoop.
Filling In The Backstory
A Thanksgiving episode of Happy Endings revealed that Brad (Damon Wayans Jr. ) first met Max (Adam Pally) and his friends on a season on MTV's The Real World that never aired because one of the castmembers burned down the house they were living in. Watching the 10-year-old episode for the first time, Jane (Eliza Coupe) discovered that Brad initially found her controlling and obnoxious, and Brad discovered that their initial hook-up had happened by accident: Jane had been trying to sneak into another castmember's bed when she fell into Brad's.
Meeting The Folks
On New Girl, Jess (Zooey Deschanel) introduced her flatmates to her divorced parents, played by Jamie Lee Curtis and Rob Reiner. It turns out Jess has long harbored The Parent Trap-inspired fantasies of getting her folks back together, and she drafts an unwilling Nick (Jake Johnson) into her scheme by begging him to flirt with her mom in an attempt to get her dad jealous. Which works, but with the unintended side effect that Nick is now totally into her mom. And with good reason: I mean, c'mon, she's Jamie Lee Curtis.
The Slide Into Self Parody Is Complete
For years, the joke about Paula Abdul's fading career has been "We'll know she's hit rock bottom when she reunites with MC Skat Kat," the animated feline who co-starred in the video for her 1989 hit "Opposites Attract." Well, on Tuesday night's Dancing With The Stars results show, Abdul performed a medley of her biggest hits... which included an appearance by her CGI dance partner during their song. So that happened.
Into The Holidays
Late Night With Jimmy Fallon officially entered the holiday season with the latest of their instant-classic musical comedy bits. This time it was Fallon and Parks and Recreation star Rashida Jones singing a holiday-themed medley of recent pop hits by Taylor Swift ("We Are Never Ever Ever Wearing Ugly Sweaters") and Carly Rae Jepsen ("Pass the Gravy"), among others. I always forget what a nice voice Jones has, though I shouldn't: she is the daughter of legendary producer-bandleader Quincy Jones, after all.
Farewell To A Legend
Television icon Larry Hagman, immortal both for his portrayal of harried astronaut Major Nelson on the high-concept classic I Dream of Jeannie and as perhaps the ultimate TV anti-hero, Dallas' J.R. Ewing, died late Friday of complications from throat cancer. One of the great Hollywood eccentrics as well as a hilarious raconteur, Hagman will be missed both onscreen and off.