Maya & Marty’s season finale gets laughs in the wrong places

NBC

NBC

What I’ll Miss About You Monologue

Maya and Marty kicked off the season finale with a really cute song about working together over the course of six episodes and what they’ll miss about each other. It was charming, self-deprecating, and got the night off to a good start.

NBC

NBC

Superclean Commercial

This sketch, featuring special guest Emma Stone, made me laugh (at first) because I’m always making fun of those infomercials where the voice over guy keeps repeating the phone number and saying “call now.” This hit the nail on the head … and then it went on for longer than it should have. But it had a funny punchline that made it all not quite what it seemed.

NBC

NBC

Burt Cassidy, Gay Detective

The first in what appeared to be a bunch of leftover sketches from previous shows featured Sean Hayes, who made an appearance in the second episode, as a classic noir detective with Maya as a dame in distress. The twist is that this private dick is definitely not interested in his client despite her advances (“Honey, read the room”). Presented in black and white, the bit nailed the noir genre perfectly and offered a few laughs.

NBC

NBC

How ‘Bout We Have a Nice Night, Sailor?

Maya does a Carmen Miranda impression and Kenan Thompson and Mikey day are two sailors on leave who just want to have some fun with a woman. They get a little more than they bargain for with Carmen. Here the laughs come from Maya’s crazy accent, funny faces and a reaction to some bad food. Shooting for the lowest common denominator here.

NBC

NBC

Office Ghosts

Kenan plays a new office worker staying late, and Marty is his boss who tells him the legend of two interns who supposedly died in an elevator accident. Emma Stone and Mikey Day pop up in various places around the office as the ghosts eternally asking for Starbucks orders and signed time sheets. But there is a punchline that I didn’t see coming. This was worth a couple of chuckles, but the biggest, inadvertent laugh came from Mikey Day losing his way on the set.

NBC

NBC

“Call Your Girlfriend”

Maya and Emma sing the song “Call Your Girlfriend” while using a butter container as an instrument. Maya was presenting this as if it was a new thing, but if you saw Pitch Perfect (in 2013) it was very reminiscent of the “Cups” song. Still, the two shared a nice harmony.

NBC

NBC

Wyoming Skies

Another held over sketch from Steve Martin’s appearance on the first episode, this one featured Steve, Marty, Kenan and Mikey as cowboys around a campfire. After a song, Marty had to offer a critique of Steve’s performance. This one just gave Short some time to be broad and over-the-top, but it wasn’t very funny.

NBC

NBC

Jiminy Glick with Kelly Ripa

The Jiminy Glick pieces have generally offered some big belly laughs, but Kelly Ripa was not the best guest to end the season with. She offered very little back and forth with Short’s Jiminy, really allowing him to steamroll through the interview. Although to make up for her lack of participation, he really had some hilarious lines, including the one about having to take a urine softener. Not the best of the bunch, but Short did his best to save the sketch.

NBC

NBC

Nature Song

Probably the best sketch of the evening. Kenan and Mikey were two hikers. Mikey threw some trash on the ground causing Mother Earth to appear. Maya came flying in singing a song about not littering, but it took a funny turn when she said it was okay to throw trash in the ocean because it was filled with ugly fish. Of course, the king of the seas appeared (Short) and the two sang disparaging songs about each other’s realms. The songs had some pretty funny lyrics, but again the biggest laugh came from a technical screw up when Maya and Marty were supposed to fly towards each other and they nearly took out Mikey in the process.

NBC

NBC

We Did This Together

My favorite part of the show where Maya, Marty and Kenan harmonize. A huge laugh came when Maya “fell” off the piano bench and then actually lost her shoe. The song was sweet, and the lyrics where Kenan suggested the show should have had his name in the title too were funny (especially when Marty cut him off), and the show finished with Mikey Day, dozens of showgirls and guys and tons of confetti.

The final episode of Maya & Marty was just as much of a mixed bag as the previous five have been. Ratings have been not bad, not great, so it’s unknown at this time if NBC will consider giving the show another run. If it does, they really need to get some stronger writers (and the credits show at least a dozen) who can punch up the sketches with some great jokes. Maya and Marty (and Kenan) are all talented people. They just need some better material. I’ve said this before, but take a cue from the great variety shows of the past – add some spoofs of current movies, incorporate more musical numbers, keep highlighting the best of Broadway. The show can’t survive with just some mild humor and on air bloopers. This summer run was just okay, and I’m happy we got to spend a few weeks with the pair, but if they return they really need to be funny and not just a pale imitation of SNL. Work on it!

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