The final sketch of this week’s “SNL” was a parody of late night cable infomercials peddling compilation records from old musicians — a genre of content that grows less familiar by the day as the number of cable subscribers cutting the cord out there continues to grow.
In this sketch, “SNL” cast members Kate McKinnon and Beck Bennett sit in a set made up to look like a 50s-style diner, complete with big ole milkshakes, an extremely familiar site for those of us who remember falling asleep with cable on and waking up in the middle of the night. Bennett and McKinnon are trying to sell a five-disc box set from “the poet of teen love” Chucky Lee Bird, an alleged legend of rock and roll from the 1950s.
But the bit goes very wrong very quickly as they start playing clips from his songs, which are very clearly about Chucky Lee Bird falling in love with underage girls. Take, for instance, the song “Farmer Girl,” which contains these lyrics as sung by Ferrell: “She grows corn/ she grows beans/ her daddy hates me/ because she’s only 14/ 14, 14, that’s her age/ 14!” You can watch the full sketch above.
Throughout the bit, McKinnon is growing visibly more and more upset because of the appalling situation, and she’s relieved when they come to a song, “My New T-Bird,” which seems to be about a car rather than a child.
But there’s a twist, of course. Here’s what Ferrell sings for this portion of the set: “She purrs so fine/ she’s fresh off the line/ I wanna make her mine/ and this song’s about a girl who’s 13/ 13/ Okay, she’s 12!”
After going through a list of continually more disturbing song titles, including “One Plus One Equals Eleven” and “Baby You Can Drive My Car If I’m In The Passenger Seat Because You Only Have Your Permit,” McKinnon declares the commercial over because they can’t in good conscience keep it going. But Bennett protests.
“Well I can’t just bail on him, Joanne. I mean he’s still my grandpa,” Bennett said, before revealing the big twist: that Chucky Lee Bird wasn’t making these songs in the distant past after all. “I just thought it was a different time back then. It was the ’80s.”
McKinnon: “He made these songs in the 1980s? Who makes ’50s rock and roll in the 1980s?”
Bennett: “Uh, Billy Joel. Every heard of him?”
McKinnon: “But Billy Joel didn’t make pedophile anthems.”