Ken Tucker says Thursday night's shows prove more is definitely less

By Ken Tucker
Updated February 09, 2001 at 05:00 AM EST
Credit: Friends: Warner Bros TV

Super size ”Friends” and ”SNL” continue to disappoint

When, during Thursday night’s super size ”Friends,” the phrase ”One Hour Next Week” scrolled out along the bottom of the screen, it seemed more like a threat than a treat: Here we were, suffering through one of the weaker ”Friends” in recent memory — each pal turns 30, each birthday recounted in cobbled together flashbacks — and NBC was telling us next week, they’re going to bloat out to 60 minutes? Not a good enticement.

My guess for a joke that would have been trimmed in the editing room? Ross: ”Do you know how old the earth is?” Rachel: ”Late 30s?” Subplot that could have used cutting? Phoebe and her unfunny twin sister. Plus, the episode cheated: ”Friends” usually contains a final joke that runs during the closing credits (”the button,” I gather comedy writers call it). Last night: No button. Super size, schnooper size.

As for the ”SNL” addition: The ”Jeopardy!” spoof is now officially tired. The only time I laughed: Tina Fey’s ”Weekend Update” line about how, to save wood, China will now make chopsticks ”from the bones of dissident students.” I really like that sharp tongued Fey.



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