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Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

nyc
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Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

Hi! Did you guys see SNL's sketch last night about two disgruntled employees (guest host Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson" and cast member Fred Armisen) who are not in the mood to be entertaining tourists in a restaurant on Kauai? The Rock dances in a "traditional" style while Armisen strums the ukulele, and both of them chat up the vacationing diners... And don't say the nicest things to them.

There are lots of funny parts to it, but I'm still trying to sort out whether or not I liked the skit. On the one hand when I went to the Big Island and Maui for my honeymoon four years ago(I haven't been to Kauai), I found the people I met so kind and welcoming and I think that this skit is unfair to them. But I did notice that many of the locals were living in poverty so maybe this skit calls it like it is?

If you haven't seen the SNL sketch, I have posted it on my blog here (travelogged.com/travelogged/2009/03/snl-mock…). I am curious to hear your thoughts about the SNL sketch.

rhode island
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1. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I agree. We were not sure whether to laugh or be insulted for the people of Hawaii. There are some comments that I found offensive, like when he says about them all living in poverty. We are leaving in a few days for our 5th trip to Hawaii, and never have we found any one there to be rude or ungracious. In fact, most of them go out of their way to make sure our vacation is wonderful. In fact, we have made friends with some of them. Hawaii is a beautiful paradise, and that is what sent us there originally, but the real reason we keep going back is the people.

Kauai, Hawaii
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2. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I LOL'ed a couple spots, but agree that the writers or even The Rock could have done better than the business tourist with the sister joke or the strange definition of aloha.

The Rock spent the 86-87 school year at McKinley High School in Honolulu.

laguna niguel, ca
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3. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I am sure it was an attempt to write something special for Rock with his hawaii roots. New Yorkers writing about Hawaii, what do you expect?

nyc
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4. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I didn't know The Rock was from Hawaii. (I don't anything abt The Rock really.) But that explains the inspiration behind the skit at least and gives it more context.

Island of Hawaii...
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5. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

well, I expected not to like it, because SNL hasn't been funny for years IMHO, and I didn't expect them to do a good job ...

But I was LMAO at it.

Come on, it's satire. Satire exaggerates to make its point, so of course it overdoes the description of how they live. The skit isn't making fun of local; it's making fun of self-absorbed tourists.

think it was a good sketch ... but as it was aimed not at all tourists but tourists who have no clue about Hawai'i, the real targets probably won't get the point, and the tourists who aren't totally wrapped up in themselves are worrying about the political correctness. I say just laugh.

Have you seen this video? kaiwahine shared it awhile back:

e-hawaii.com/jokes/rap-reiplinger-room-servi…

This is local humor ... embracing the stereotypes.

Chicagoland
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6. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I didn't see this, but nothing could improve on the old Rap Repplinger (sp?) sketch "Room Service", where the operator repeatedly calls the guest "Mr. Frogtree" and completely botches his order, all the while fighting off the amorous attentions of her co-worker, "Russell". That's funny without being mean.

Since when are numerous Hawaiians living in poverty? Things may be tougher in these economic times, but that's true everywhere in the USA.

Island of Hawaii...
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7. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

Psst, Sue, the link I posted was to "Room Service."

laguna niguel, ca
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8. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

We saw Rock at a Luau with his mom who still lives in hawaii

Island of Hawaii...
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9. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I saw the skit as in the spirit of Saturnalia - where the servers get to reverse roles and treat those they habitually serve with disrespect.

The Romans recognized the need to ease tensions with this annual festival. In Hawai'i, night after night they're supposed to go "OH, you're on your HONEYMOON!" and gush.

For me the humor was about getting to drop the server mask and say exactly what they thought and how old it gets doing the same routine night after night, for too little pay to ever take a vacation.

The skit isn't so much about people in Hawai'i as it is about waiting on tourists who have some illusion they're unusual and have a set of misconceptions about how people in the land of aloha just live to serve people, and must be happy because they live in what tourists call paradise. Which is a myth ... and fair game to satirize.

As for tough times - yes, it's happening everywhere INCLUDING Hawai'i, but some visitors are oblivious to that. The thing about this skit -- this could have been done three years ago during the boom times, no recession, and it would still have been apt.

Seattle, Washington
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10. Re: Saturday Night Live's Hawaiian Hotel Sketch

I thought it was hilarious! I do agree that the sister knocked up by a visitor thing wasn't too accurate, but the rest was pretty good. When we were still living on Oahu and went to neighbor islands or Waikiki, you could basically see hotel/restaurant/bar staff physically relax when we told them we lived in Hawaii.

And I said this in my earlier post about the skit, but I think The Rock did a pretty respectable hula!