Review: Rogue Farms Good Chit Pilsner

good chit pilsner rogue farms

Here’s the thing about Pilsner (or “Pils” if you’re a douche); it’s the Toyota Corolla of beer. Pilsner is pretty similar around the globe, and just like your ’88 rusted out Corolla, a Pilsner is always there to get you rolling when you want a crisp and clean brew. Starting as a Czech farmhouse brew a few hundred years ago, Pilsner is now brewed around the world and in many styles, but the bubbly crisp taste is always there. Rogue did some unique stuff with this pilsner in the brew process; but then stuck with the throwback Czech yeast as a call to the past and bring it full circle.

Once poured, a two finger head rises, but then fades to nice thin drinkable layer with some lacing as swirled. Honey in color, with cloudiness that eventually settles, this glass just looks refreshing. You can definitely taste and smell the hops; which is a bit different than many traditional pilsners, but hey, I dig hops. Well, time to taste this jazz.

Yup, as expected, nice and clean upfront, semi citrusy flavor even, with a grit or kind of earthy tone (from the Rogue grown barley?) before the final crisp bitter at the end. Honestly this is a great summer brew, easy to drink, super smooth with just enough bitter to keep you sipping. A nice brew to have a few bombers and not be falling over drunk at your “bro’s frat party,” brah.

The Facts:
Beer: Good Chit Pilsner
Brewer: Rogue Farms
Brewed in: Oregon, USA
ABV: 6%
Rating: 8 of 10

Review: Breckenridge Brewing Vanilla Porter

I’m a fan of flavored porters and stouts…generally. With that said, I had high expectations for this beer. Once poured, the dark color was appreciated and I was ready for that smoky porter taste. The pint had a nice head and the aroma was fairly sweet. Here’s where it all goes wrong…

porters-breckenridge-vanilla-porter

Once sipped, I was expecting a sweet flavor off the bat, with the sour/smoky flavor at the back, you know, like a traditional porter. I was sadly mistaken, the beer tasted light, I really am not sure why it’s called/considered a porter? There was nothing about it that would make me classify this as a porter, more of a dark ale with some flavoring. I hate to not be positive at all on a brew, but unfortunately I have nothing positive to say other than if this beer was free I’d gladly drink it. It has more of a “I’ll bring this to my grandma’s knitting circle for the ladies” flavor as opposed to a proper porter for a real live beer enthusiast, more malt less frill next time please.

Usually my beer reviews are a bit more verbose, but my review is half assed when the beer I drink is half assed, and other than giving this to the bride in a gift basket for a wedding, I don’t believe there is another purpose for it. If you want a porter that is traditional, then this beer is not for you. If you want an easily sipped beer while playing a game of washers with the homies on a hot day, then this may be alright, but I wouldn’t buy it again. This is the lowest rated beer I’ve reviewed on this site, and I was being generous, BUT, I will give the brewer another shot on a different beer later.

The Facts:
Beer: Vanilla Porter
Brewer: Breckenridge Brewing
Brewed in: Breckenridge, CO, USA
ABV: 4.7%
Rating: 3 of 10

Review: Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp a Butterfly

Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp a Butterfly

Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp a Butterfly

Release Date: March 15, 2015
Rating: 90

Released a week earlier than planned, To Pimp a Butterfly is the third studio release by LA’s very own, Kendrick Lamar. The name “To Pimp a Butterfly” is a play on the famous required high school reading, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. For those that have never read it or don’t really remember the story, it’s more or less about racial injustice in the south preceding the civil rights movement. Trust me, when you listen to the album, the name works. As does the cover art. You draw your own conclusions on the meaning of it, but I think it’s pretty clear.
Since his emergence, Kendrick’s style has evolved from a West Coast, mainstream friendly sound, to one with a message not giving a fuck if it’s friendly to radio or the mainstream. There is a noticeable change in his sound over the three albums, but there has always been a consistent social message embedded therein. His albums, specifically this and his last album, tell a story usually broken up over each track on the album. In the case of to Pimp a Butterfly the story is told in the form of spoken word. Kendrick Lamar’s message is delivered directly and indirectly. Some things are laid out in front of you to see and hear, others aren’t – specifically with this album; you need to pay attention when giving this a go for the first time. Dr. Dre is the executive producer while Boi-1da, Pharrell, and Flying Lotus chipped in on production of individual tracks. George Clinton, Ronald Isley, Snoop Dogg, and Bilal supplemented vocals on a few tracks. No shortage of star power for sure. Even with that, there are no club bangers and there’s no summer anthem. This isn’t the album you blast with the cars window down. This is an album you listen to with yourself.
Personally, I loved the album beginning to end. Every track served its purpose as a chapter in the story. Even in the case of a couple tracks where the music didn’t sound right the lyrics and vocals carried the track. My favorites were King Kunta, Momma, and I. It’s damn near impossible to pick a quotable lyric from this album. I could copy and paste the lyrics to every song and set your web browser on fire. Legit, the whole thing pieces itself together, so there really isn’t a standalone bit that I could capture and be like, “here, this verse is the shit.” Fuck it, I’ll try… Here’s the end of the track I. It’s an acapella / spoken word verse:

I promised Dave I’d never use the phrase “fuck ni**a”
He said “think about what you saying: ‘Fuck ni**as'”
No better than Samuel on D’Jango
No better than a white man with slave boats
Sound like I needed some soul searching
My pops gave me some game in real person
Retrace my steps on what they never taught me
Did my homework fast before government caught me
So I’ma dedicate this one verse to Oprah
On how the infamous, sensitive N-word control us
So many artist gave her an explanation to hold us
Well this is my explanation straight from Ethiopia
N-E-G-U-S definition: royalty; King royalty – wait listen
N-E-G-U-S description: Black emperor, King, ruler, now let me finish
The history books overlooked the word and hide it
America tried to make it to a house divided
The homies don’t recognize we be using it wrong
So I’ma break it down and put my game in the song
N-E-G-U-S, say it with me
Or say no more. Black stars can come and get me
Take it from Oprah Winfrey; tell her she right on time
Kendrick Lamar, by far, realest Negus alive

I’m so conflicted. I probably changed this album rating like 20 times during the course of writing this review. Even while listening to it, I was thinking about how it would be interpreted by the general public. It was definitely one of, if not the hardest, to rate. It’s brilliant, it’s raw, it’s real, but it’s very different. The one thing that bugs more than anything is the message of the album is going to be lost on so many. I’m not going to get political because this isn’t really the right forum for it. Suffice it to say, the message in this album is unapologetic, relevant, and necessary. Don’t go into this album listening with just your ears, listen with your heart and mind. Be forewarned; don’t expect good kid mAAd city or Section.80. The sound of the album is a blend of spoken word, jazz, funk, and of course hip hop. The album does have a bit of a background story going on throughout. Kind of similar to the structure of the story in good kid mAAd city. Without giving too much info away… I’ll end it with this… Tupac is alive.

Review: Smuttynose Barleywine Ale

smuttynose-barelywine-ale

Smuttynose has some interesting brews, as well as very nice, sometimes hilarious labels, so in the neighborhood craft brew bodega they definitely stand out from the pack. Barleywine style ales are usually a heavy variety of beer, high ABV, malty flavor; hints of caramels maybe even dryness like a dark chocolate bar in certain varieties.

When poured, dark amber in color, with nice, thick, and creamy foam head (that’s not suggestive). Caramel malts are smelled before the first sip. Once that first sip hits the tongue it’s pretty damn impressive, holds true to the “Big Beer” series moniker attached. The front is a big blast of malt, but at the end of the taste, there is a distinct bitterness from the hops. I like the drastic taste differences with this combination of malt and hops flavors, it’s like pouring salt on watermelon; either you like it or you don’t. The combo of hops/malt works better here than in the last Barleywine I reviewed, as in the case of Smuttynose, their hops addition is just used to add a bite at the back of the flavor but not overpowering like the Stone Old Guardian.

Initially, I thought the alcohol flavor was not hidden well in the beer though, but then I read that it is suggested to age a bit, so the alcohol “mellows out”….man. So, I’m going to rate the beer, but let’s just say the jury is still out for a month or so, as I’m going to age a bottle and revisit this.

The Facts:
Beer: Barleywine Ale
Brewer: Smuttynose Brewing Company
Brewed in: Hampton, New Hampshire, USA
ABV: 11.6%
Rating: 7.25 of 10
Price: $6.99 per 22oz bottle

Review: Big Sean – Dark Sky Paradise

Big Sean Dark Sky Paradise

Release Date: Feb
Rating: 78*

Dark Sky Paradise. Yeah, pretty apt title considering the general sound of Big Sean’s 3rd studio release. More on that in a minute but first lets start with some background on the Detroit native. Big Sean, at least in my mind, solidified his presence in the hip hop mainstream in 2010 on the Bet Awards Cypher segment. Sharing the mic with Kanye, Common, Pusha T, and CyHi the Prince, Big Sean was arguably the best part of that track. (Unless you’re a Ye dickrider, then Big Sean was 2nd) Before that though, Sean made his presence known in mixtape circles hooking up with Mick Boogie on UNKNOWBIGSEAN. In 2011, the release of Finally Famous, featured some heavyweight talent on the production and vocal sides of the album. A tried and true method in the music business, it’s no question that having that kind of backing would lead to future success. His first two albums achieved top 3 spots on the Billboard 100 while Dark Sky Paradise debuted at 1. So far so good, the dudes definitely got a solid foundation to build a lasting career in the rap game.

As I mentioned in the opening, the sound of this album is definitely dark and serious. Not serious in some kind of political, enlightining, going to learn from this shit-type serious. But more mature. I wasn’t expecting it with the relase of “I Don’t Fuck With You” before the album. I actually went into it thinking that the album was going to be bubblegum and radio friendly. I was pleasantly surprised it wasn’t. The album opens up with Dark Sky, which thankfully wasn’t an intro of some irrelevant dialogue I could do without. This track was a nice solid opening and set the tone for the rest of album… dark, gritty, in your face. There’s also a lot of reflection in the album, reflecting on the fame, relationships, friendships, and the kind of clche shit you’d expect 3 albums in. Track production features the likes of Mike Will Made It, Boi-1da, and DJ Mustard. Additional firepower on the vocal side is brought to you by Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Drake, and John Legend. Again, with talent like that all over the album you’d have to try real hard to fuck up.

I had a hard time picking a track that, I would say, was the best on the album. Most of them were equally enjoyable to listen to. The only real exception would be “Play No Games” feat. Chris Brown and Ty Dolla Sign. I don’t know, I just wasn’t feelin it I guess. Otherwise, the whole album is solid, not 5 star, “holy shit this is unbeliveable ground breaking stuff,” but just consistintaly good throughout; musically and lyrically. Honestly, I prefer an album like that, in constrast to something that has three or four amazing songs punctuated with a bunch of b-side filler and interludes. For the sake of consistency and tradition… my favorite track was Dark Sky. The track did something you don’t see too often. It was really a nice intro-type track that clearly set the tone for the whole album. It served it’s purpose 100%. Coupled with the fact it had 2 nice extended verses done in Big Sean’s signature speed switching flow. For a the best verse though I’ve got to jump to a different track, “All Your Fault” feat. Kanye West. The third verse is a back and forth between Sean and Ye that flows nicely.

Big Sean (Kanye West)
Ho you gotta move quick
(World in my hands, I ain’t gotta loose grip
I don’t like loose pussy or loose lips)
And I done did the impossible a few times, Tom Cruise shit
Ho and I ain’t satisfied bein’ on that top 5 list
(I ain’t satisfied until I’m on that all-time list)
Til everything I spit is all timeless
(My girl on that all fine list)
My life a little luck, a lot of grind
Bitch no maybe ho I gotta make it
(Fuck your nomination, man fuck the world)
I’m repopulatin’, wrap my roley round my waist, yeah time’s a wastin’
(Ni**as want the comma comma combination)
Long as I’m around, it’s gon’ be dot dot dot a lot of waitin’
Got my pinky on her brain while I’m gettin’ brain plottin’ world domination
(People ask me how to make it)
I’m just like “man if you want the crown, bitch you gotta take it”
Straight up

I gotta say that in conclusion I would highly recommend this album. It’s consistant in quality start to finish. It’s a nice progression in the evolution of one of the best MCs out there. It’s packed with A-grade production and aritists. It’s not too deep, but not too simple and bland either. All in all it’s definitely a winner.

*Author’s note: In order to more acurately rate albums, I’m switching to a 100-point scale. I’d argue that it’s more clear and that there can be fractional differences in an albums quality. From production to lyrics, there’s a lot of things that could go right or wrong in 60 or so minutes.

Review: Stone Brewing 2015 Old Guardian Barley Wine Extra Hoppy

A couple notes to start. It is advised to age this beer before drinking, however, my local liquor store had it in a fridge, and I do not like to let a beer get to room temp if it has already been chilled. Second, there is regular version without the “extra hoppy” moniker, and I probably should’ve done a side by side review (which I still may do sometime soon). Anyhow, this is a limited release selection from Stone in their “Odd Year” release series. Usually the odd year releases are a rehashed version of a previously limited beer.

Stone Brewing Old Guardian Barley Wine Extra Hoppy

With a barley wine brew, I’m fully expecting a heavy malted caramel flavor, almost sweet and thick. Indeed, the first sniff after the pour reveals some of that heavy fruit scent you get with a barley wine, however there is a citrus scent from the rarely used Azacca hops; actually a dwarf variety of hops that packs quite a punch. The color is a smooth brown with a super creamy head. Tasting the beer reveals a sweat taste at first, with a dry bitterness at the end from the Azacca no doubt. While I do give Stone credit for branching out and trying something a little weird, I don’t really think this works. I mean, reading about it from their website got me excited to try it, but the hops just shouldn’t be in a barley wine brew, it’s just too out there. I feel like it would be weird to say “try my IPA Smoked Porter,” some things weren’t meant to mix, and barley wine heavy malt type beers with a strong flavored hops just doesn’t mesh well with my palate at least. What’s weird is, the color, the smell, the taste…everything is good until the bite of the hops, and it just doesn’t fly in this type of beer.

This, and the regular Old Guardian Barley Wine (without the extra hops) were released on 2/9/15, so check your local vendors for availability. I’d say either are worth trying, but you be the judge of the crazy that is the Extra Hoppy version. It’s a melding of styles in one bottle, while I commend Stone on always pushing the limits of what beer should be, I just don’t think this one works.

The Facts:
Beer: Old Guardian Barley Wine Extra Hoppy: Odd Year series
Brewer: Stone Brewing Co
Brewed In: Escondido, California, USA
ABV: 11%
Price: $8.69+tax for 22oz Bottle
Rating: 6 of 10

Review: Bell’s Winter White Ale

Well to be completely honest, Bell’s really haven’t done much for me in the past. I try to be open to different brews from a given company, even if I was not pleased with a past product I may have tried, so with that in mind, time to see what’s up. Since winter is juuuust about done, I figured I could review one more seasonal. I’m expecting a light, and easy to drink beer with “Winter White Ale”, and upon pouring the light amber color and foamy head appear. In reading about this beer, I learned that it was NOT spiced; the scents and flavors are simply from the grain/hops and yeast used.

bells-winter-ale

When poured, there is a citrus smell, even a clove type scent. The beer is cloudy, but according to Bell’s it’s supposed to be that way. Honestly, the pairing of Kush that I had went great with the flavor of this beer, it made for a very fruity flavor. If you’re a smoker I’d advise to try it, the beer some how brings out the green’s flavor on my tongue. Bell’s Winter Ale on its own is a pretty good seasonal brew; there is a hefeweizen like banana after taste that I enjoyed and the clove scent was present in taste as well. The downside on the flavor; I did purchase this in a 16oz can, and there was a pretty persistent iron taste throughout. I wasn’t sure if that was Michigan water they used or the can causing the iron taste, but it was too much, definitely ruined the overall taste.

Overall, this is the best beer I’ve had from Bell’s. I’ve had “Two Hearted Ale” and a stout from them in the past, they just don’t whet my whistle as a whole, but I WOULD recommend “Winter White Ale” to a friend no doubt, especially for a long drinking night as it is a light, pilsnerish type brew. Goes down smooth, and a pretty good overall flavor.

The Facts:
Beer: Winter White Ale
Brewer: Bell’s Brewery
Brewed in: Michigan, USA
ABV: 5.0%
Rating: 6.75 of 10
Price: $1.89 per 16oz Can (Sale)

Review: Drake – If Youre Reading This Its Too Late

Drake If you're reading this its too late album art
“Drake – If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late” 

Release Date: February 13th, 2015

Fire Factor:  fire-rating  fire-rating  fire-rating

Is it REALLY a mixtape? No. It’s a studio album billed as a mixtape. Why did Drake initially bill it as a mixtape? I don’t know for sure. There’s a lot of rumors out there about his desire to release it as mixtape but Cash Money Records wanted to generate some revenue of it. Regardless of the politics, his last few “official mixtapes” have definitely been on par with a studio album. This album (or mixtape) follows suit. Pretty good overall from start to finish. To be totally fair though, I’ve always been a fan of Drake’s hip hop style, just not so much the r&b stuff. The best part of this album is that it is a little more hip hop than the r&b stuff Drake usually splits his time with. What hurts the album though is Drake’s predictability though, more on that in just a sec…
The album opens up with Legend. Legend is another self-affirmation Drake track. Let’s face it, Drake does this shit all the time. Every single album has at least a couple of those tracks. I don’t have anything against it, it’s the backbone of a lot of hip hop. Drake also has a tendency to reminisce a lot. Again, that is evident in most of the tracks on the album, at least in a bar or two. Musically, his harmonization is still the same and redundant throughout the album. Nothing against that either, but dudes style is a little predictable at this point.

The second song on the album, Energy, is my favorite. I have no idea why the second song on every album I reviewed so far always seems to be the strongest… but yup, here too. Energy, beginning to end, is a banger. The beat is very nice and the lyrics, first to last, are great.

I got people talkin’ down, man, like I give a fuck
I bought this one a purse, I bought this one a truck
I bought this one a house, I bought this one a mall
I keep buyin’ shit just make sure you keep track of it all
I got bitches askin’ me about the code for the wifi
So they can talk about they timeline
And show me pictures of they friends
Just to tell me they ain’t really friends
Ex-girl she the female version of me
I got strippers in my life, but they virgins to me
I hear everybody talkin’ ’bout what they gonna be
I got high hopes for you ni**as, we gon’ see
I got money in the courts so all my niggas are free
‘Bout to call your ass a Uber, I got somewhere to be
I hear fairy tales ‘bout how they gon’ run up on me
Well, run up when you see me then and we gon’ see
Source: genius.com

The next track, 10 Bands, jumps in effortlessly. I love when producers do that; when the next song almost continues on the last. Boi-1da and the rest of the production team at OVO are in my opinion, equal in talent to the lyricists/artists. Energy, No Tellin, 6 God, and Used To are the best tracks on the album and in that order. I wouldn’t skip over any of those songs, but I would skip over just about everything else. The latter half of the album is just ok and honestly that’s probably why I didn’t hit the album with a 3.5 grade. I mean it closes out ok with 6pm in New York, with a pretty unique beat but between Used To and that song it’s choked full of mediocre r&b.

Is it a must cop? Maybe for the fan, not for the passive listener. There’s 4 or 5 songs that are, or will, be on heavy rotation on the radio in the next couple of weeks. Honestly, Nothing Was The Same, felt a little better put together. If you were on the fence with that maybe just give the album a preview with a few tracks and decide. If you’re a die hard fan then you’re going to cop it anyway, I’m sure. At the end of the day, it’s still a nice piece of work just not great.

Review: Gem Amber Ale

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England is a very old country where a city called Bath, in the south part, is known for being one of the country’s oldest villages. This makes the beer they produce in this region stand out as being brewed with a high level of skill and passion that has been perfected over centuries of practice. Bath produces a premium line of ales with the Gem Amber Ale being a knockout contender

Gem-Amber-Ale

Gem has a dark, auburn color with a slight hint of carbonation making the foam of the beer handsomely stick to the sides of the pint glass when taking a sip. The brew inhabits a tasty, malty embodiment in the mouth that washes down with a slightly bitter ending. Malt are what make a beer sweet without the tackiness of a sugar like you would get from a piece of candy. While having such an easy, smooth drink, the punch at the end really wakes your taste buds up that satisfies all of your cravings for a fully-rounded experience. Gem is a rare find that expertly balances a blend between the sweet and bitter perfectly.

When you find this ale in a bottle in your local supermarket, make sure to pour it into a pint glass for the best result on taste and appearance. When pairing it with your favorite dishes, Gem pairs perfectly with strong cheeses, spicy pizzas, and barbeque fresh from the flames. The label is somewhat unattractive but the high level of skill that went into imagining this perfect recipe makes up in miles that one small set back.

The Facts:
Brewer: Bath Ales
Brewed In: Warmley, UK
ABV: 4.8%

The Best 3.5 Hours of TV, Ever

The Best 3.5 Hours of TV, Ever
The Good & Bad from SNL@40

Last Sunday night proved to be almost as star studded of an event as the Oscars, but this wasn’t LA; bitterly cold New York City brought out the stars and Saturday Night Live alumnus alike, for the comedy’s 40th Anniversary Special. The show itself was great, I laughed out loud so many times during the old sketches and commercials, as well as the new sketches specifically for the special. The guest spots and musical guests were awesome (mostly, *cough* why Miley Cyrus though? *cough*), and the alumni other than Eddie Murphy, genuinely looked like they were having fun during the show.

The Good:

Well, when we get to see a NEW Jeopardy sketch, we’re all winners. Ferrell, MacDonald, Hammond kill it. There were careful mispronunciations (Sean Connery turns “Who Reads” category to “Whore Ads”) and Trebek’s mother jokes. The return of Turd Ferguson aka Burt Reynolds, to the Jeopardy stage was another highlight, however there is some controversy over who appeared in the Cosby Video Daily Double of the sketch, and I’ll get to that later.

The Californians, is a modern sketch that I personally liked. The Sketch mocks the accent, everyone being a blonde, the proud feeling Californian’s get when they know how to avoid traffic, and soap opera’s/reality dramas. Great guest spots from Bradley Cooper and Betty White, but Taylor Swift was horrible and should stick to…whatever it is she does as she almost tanked the sketch. Even David Spade made quick use of a guest spot at the end of the sketch.

The monologue by Steve Martin, where he is joined on the stage by just about everyone including Peyton Manning, was a great way to showcase Martin’s talents. Martin Short attempted a similar monologue with the help of Beyonce (Maya Rudolph), but it just didn’t hold a candle to the smug performance Steve Martin throws out there.

Pretaped winners: the Sandberg/Sandler collab video was alright, “Deep Thoughts with Jack Handy” is always a plus, “Mom Jeans” and “Super Colon Blow” were fun throwbacks, and Phil Hartman was then able to appear via old sketches.

Great short appearances by Bill Murray singing a rendition of the “Jaws” theme song as Nick Ocean, Adam Sandler as Operaman was fun, Tim Meadows self deprecating humor from the audience was hilarious and backhanded at the same time. And we even got a Jerry Seinfeld/Larry David reunion on live TV. Hell, even Joe Piscapo sang a little ditty as Frank Sinatra. The intro of Chevy Chase, by the past anchors of Weekend Update, was better than Heavy, uhm…I mean, Chevy Chase’s appearance. Norm Macdonald stole the show with one line, “We are just merely utility infielders…” while standing with Colin Quinn, Kevin Nealon, and Seth Myers, as he was introducing Chevy Chase.

The Bad:

Weekend Update was horrible, the lady anchors should’ve been unused, and instead let Macdonald, Myers, Quinn and Nealon go at it on the anchor desk. I always thought the Rosana character that Emma Stone impersonated was a regional, not really that funny of a character from the 70s era (sorry not a Gilda Fan), and Melissa McCarthy was just bad as Chris Farley. The only positive of this sketch was Ed Norton as “Stefan.”

The Jon Lovitz being dead running joke was pretty lame, I don’t know if it was an homage to the Beatles because Sir Paul was onset or what, but it wasn’t that good.

The Wayne’s World sketch was nostalgic, but still bad and full of catch phrases, the only highlight was telling Kanye West to remain seated numerous times.

Eddie Murphy and Chevy Chase both looked super reluctant to be there, and that is kind of sad that neither can show humility at this stage in their lives; but we’ll talk Murphy specifically and here’s where the controversy comes into play. Norm Macdonald’s twitter account went crazy Thursday morning with a full blow by blow story as to how some sketches came to be before the live show. Apparently, Murphy was supposed to play Bill Cosby in the Jeopardy sketch during the taped Daily Double. Well, Murphy’s excuse, via Macdonald’s twitter acct was, ‘I can’t kick a man when he’s down,’ referring to Cosby. Well that would normally be commendable; however, Murphy’s 20 second appearance was lackluster at best. In fact, Chris Rock’s introduction, and buildup of Murphy, was about 6 minutes longer than Murphy’s appearance. Murphy said the same quote almost identically 2x (once on stage, and once during the red carpet show beforehand) ‘the stage is SO small, this is like going back to high school.’ Eddie, are you too big of a deal to show us some humor? We wanted the 20 yr old “Delirious” Eddie Murphy, not the 50 yr old Eddie from “Daddy Daycare.” I feel like Norm was trying to cover for Eddie, as I’m sure like many comedians, he holds Murphy in a high regard, but with Murphy talking how ‘small’ everything is, I just feel like Eddie Murphy thought he was above this event, maybe he’ll change his mind in 10 years for SNL@50?

All in all, this was probably the best 3.5 hour block of television ever in the history of man. So many comedy, Hollywood, music, and Sports stars, it was a non stop cavalcade of hilarity. The worst part about the show was that it was live DURING the NBA All Star Game, in the same city no less. There were breakouts and duds, great writing that spanned basically 3 generations, and surprises all night. If you chose this show over the All Star Game, or you DVR’d SNL to watch later, you were rewarded with some of the best TV has to offer, and I for one, can not wait for SNL@50.