As a huge Tim Meadows fan and a fan of "Saturday Night Live" in general, I've been looking for a copy of Saturday Night Live: The Best of Tim Meadows for a very long time. The 70-minute special, which aired on NBC in 2000 but was only ever released on VHS, has been quite hard to find. After finally finding a cheap copy last weekend, I was finally able to sit back and enjoy the compilation. It did not disappoint.
For fans of Tim Meadows, this is about as good of a 'Best of" one could expect. It's appropriate that the first sketch on the special is a Ladies Man sketch, since Leon Phelps is the most famous, and most hilarious, character Meadows portrayed during his tenure on "Saturday Night Live." The producers of 'The Best of Tim Meadows' could have easily filled the special with a number of Leon Phelps sketches, but there are only two included here, and they are two of the very best. Other highlights include the "Princess and the Homeboy" (a great "Fresh Prince of Bel-Air parody featuring Terri Hatcher), a "Taxicab Confessions" sketch starring Christina Ricci with Meadows as a understandably distracted cab driver, and the Eager & Jones sketch with Meadows and Chris Farley as singers. To me, there's not a single bad sketch in bunch. Some sketches are better than others, though there isn't one that's difficult to sit through.
The only downside to Saturday Night Live: The Best of Tim Meadows is one that plagues a bunch of SNL compilations, which is that there's the occasional sketch that's presented in truncated form. Context is everything in comedy, and by presenting only a few seconds to a minute of a sketch, the overall impact of certain jokes seems to be lost in certain instances. I understand why sketches are edited down for time constraint reasons when aired on NBC; however, they could have been presented uncut for the home video release. It would have also been nice to see such sketches as "The Princess and the Homeboy" uncensored without the annoying bleeps, but the sketch itself is funny enough as is.
Saturday Night Live: The Best of Tim Meadows is not one of the more popular SNL specials available out there, which explains why it has yet to be released to DVD some fifteen years after its original airing. For fans of Tim Meadows or SNL in the 1990s though, this is definitely worth tracking down. Watching this made me laugh as hard as I've laughed all year. Highly recommended. 9/10
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