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Best of SNL’ collects Fallon’s finest moments

Kelly Duoos | Tuesday, February 8, 2005

Jimmy Fallon built up quite a fan base on Saturday Night Live because of his ability to consistently deliver fresh faced performances week after week. Breaking into the late night scene in 1998, this featured player achieved cast member status and contributed to the show until his departure in 2004. His inability to keep a straight face has helped him charm viewers with his infectious smile and lovable personality. Rarely an SNL scene-stealer, Fallon often times is not the shining star of his sketches. Instead, he graciously provides a solid comedic foundation to glorify a hosting celebrity or an off-the-wall cast member. The sketches on this DVD are evenly split between Jimmy’s supporting and starring roles. This collection highlights his comedic ability where it might otherwise have been overshadowed.While on SNL, Fallon had the chance to develop some original characters that have stood the test of time. The best are showcased in this collection and include: Jarret, a third-time college junior who hosts a web cast show from his dorm room; Sully, a teenage Red Sox fan who has the tendency to become extremely angry; and the Leatherman, who creepily dresses head to toe in leather. From his performances, it is evident that Fallon grew up idolizing the players of SNL, since his impersonation skills are quite impressive. The DVD’s opening clip is the unforgettable sketch that takes place in Mick Jagger’s dressing room, in which Fallon plays a feisty reflection of the real Rolling Stone. Though Darrell Hammond’s Sean Connery steals the spotlight in the Celebrity Jeopardy sketch, Fallon’s dead-on impression of former SNL player Adam Sandler deserves recognition. His knack for creating these truly remarkable caricatures is appreciated in a montage of various clips of celebrity impressions. However, Fallon’s most hilarious moments have arguably come while he has played his most natural character: himself. Combining forces with SNL writer Tina Fey proved a success, and the two took Weekend Update by storm in the fall of 2000. “SNL’s Best of Jimmy Fallon” contains clips of the two executing their biting commentary on current events. To end the featured program, the co-anchors perform a heartfelt duet before Fallon narrates a Star Wars type story of hope and tragedy that will leave the viewer in stitches.Since this is a DVD, bonus features have of course been obligatorily included. Fallon’s audition tape for his spot on Saturday Night Live is priceless. He shows off his impersonation skills during a celebrity walk-a-thon and spoofs popular music with the help of his guitar. However, the other bonus features fail to live up to SNL potential. The Weekend Update camera test with Fey is pretty lifeless and the inclusion of the “Drinkin’ in the Woods” dress rehearsal sketch makes it obvious why it was cut from the live episode. The mediocre music video for the single “Idiot Boyfriend” and Fallon’s performance on the Carson Daly show round out the bonus features. Let this be a lesson: sometimes less is more.However disappointing a few of the extras might be, the new “Best of Jimmy Fallon” is a must-have for DVD collectors and casual fans of the program alike. It shows how his six years spent with Saturday Night Live have earned him stardom.