Thursday, June 25, 2015

Case Study No. 2048: Joan Shea

Show: "My Darling Joan" with Blake Shelton On SNL (January 25th 2015)
Look, not everyone should host Saturday Night Live. It takes a special person to hold a show for an hour and a half, and it takes an even more special person to hold the show as host and musical guest, which is what SNL host and musical guest Blake Shelton did on Saturday night. So how do you make that double duty role work for someone like Shelton? Have him sing "My Darling Joan," inspired by real life "My Sweet Lorraine," and make the viewers forget he's not actually a comedian.

It started off with a local news segment in Topeka that had 97-year-old Russell on the show to talk about his huge hit, "My Darling Joan," which he wrote about his late wife, Joan. He teamed up with Tyler (Shelton), a music producer who set the song, written by Russell, to music. If this sounds familiar, it's because it actually happened - back in 2013 - but the real life version wasn't as dark as SNL's version.

On SNL, Tyler starts singing the song for the news anchors, which seems like a good idea at first, but then things go horribly wrong. What starts off as a song about Joan's "sweet and tender smile," turns into a melodic roast of Joan's "nasty remarks," "hatred for animals," and calling her a monster. Everyone but Tyler and Russell are shocked by the twisted turn the song takes, because it turns out Russell wasn't too crazy about his late wife Joan.

In real life, Fred Stobaugh was recognized for writing a song about his late wife, Lorraine, who he had been with for almost 73 years. The song was called "Oh Sweet Lorraine," and it is actually a touching song and doesn't go in the same direction the SNL parody went. Fred's song became such a hit in 2013, he made it on the Billboard Hot 100. Here's the song SNL's "Oh Darling Joan" was modeled after. (Note: Grab the tissues, because it's a tearjerker.)
Tags: Saturday Night Live (TV Program) Blake Shelton (Musical Artist) Saturday Night Live SNL Blake Shelton Wishing Boot inspirational Country music Hee Haw The Bachelor Blake Shelton Performs Neon Light Boys Round Here My Darling Joan
Added: 4 months ago
From: Late Night TV
Views: 5,145

["Topeka Today" appears on screen, then cut to two TV hosts (played by Bobby Moynihan and Sasheer Zamata) speaking directly to the camera]
FEMALE HOST: Welcome back! It's not every day a ninety-seven year old becomes a world-famous song writer ...
MALE HOST: But that's exactly what happened to our next guest. When his wife of seventy years passed away last spring--
[cut to a black-and-white photo of a man and woman (Taran Killam and Kate McKinnon) waving to the camera in a car with a "Just Married" sign on the bumper]
MALE HOST: [from off camera] Russell Shea decided to pay tribute to her in song.
[cut back to the two hosts speaking directly to the camera]
MALE HOST: He teamed up with a local musician, and now he's got America listening with over two million YouTube hits.
FEMALE HOST: We've got Russell in the studio with us now.
[the camera pans over to show Killam (in "old man" makeup) sitting on the couch next to them]
FEMALE HOST: And aren't you a sweetheart?
[he laughs]
RUSSELL: Thank you.
FEMALE HOST: Now Russell, how did you and your wife Joan meet?
RUSSELL: Well, when I came home from the war, I'd go to the library every day. One day I walked in, and there was the most beautiful librarian I ever saw, and that was my Joan.
MALE HOST: Aw, that's beautiful. Also, here's Tyler Coldwin, who's helped set Russell's song to music.
[the camera pans over to show a younger man with a guitar (Blake Shelton) sitting next to Killam]
TYLER: Howdy.
MALE HOST: The song is "My Darlin' Joan" ... Please, take it away.
[he starts playing his guitar and singing, as black-and-white images of Joan (as a young woman) play on the screen behind him]
TYLER: My darlin' Joan, I won't forget your sweet and tender smile. My darlin' Joan, you never failed to light up a room. My darlin' Joan, I'll always treasure the day we met. I'll treasure, I'll treasure, I'll treasure, oh, that memorable day.
FEMALE HOST: Beautiful!
TYLER: There's more ...
[he starts to sing again (as the images playing behind him start to show a young Killam with "unhappier" looks on his face]
TYLER: My darlin' Joan, you were not perfect, but you sure were mine. My darlin' Joan, you could silence a room with your nasty remarks.
[the two hosts start to get confused looks on their faces]
TYLER: My darlin' Joan, your hatred of animals rattles my core. My darlin' Joan, you even yelled at me in your sleep. Your body, your body, your body, it was just okay.
MALE HOST: I'd just like everyone to know that this is our first time hearing this song ...
TYLER: My darlin' Joan, I'd hide in the closet and read my Bible for strength. My darlin' Joan, our dinners were silent and we never had sex. My darlin' Joan, the only thing you loved were your expensive hats. My darlin' Joan, your favorite hobby was making me cry. You monster, you monster, I wish I killed you but you choked on some corn.
FEMALE HOST: So ... why did you agree to help him with this?
TYLER: Look, Russell's a good guy, plus ... he's my landlord, so I kinda had to.
[he continues singing (as the images playing behind him start to show Joan with "graffiti" drawn over her face (an eyepatch, mustache, blacked-out teeth, etc.)]
TYLER: My darlin' Joan, do they let you use your humidifier in hell? My darlin' Joan, does the Devil let you curse at him in front of his friends?
[the old man joins in]
TYLER AND RUSSELL: I hate you, I hate you, I hate you and now I dance on your grave. You're in the ground, I'm alive and bugs are eating your hair--
MALE HOST: Okay! Okay, alright ... Thank you, Tyler and Russell!
RUSSELL: No, there's three more verses.
MALE HOST: Nope! Goin' to commercial, we'll be right back!
RUSSELL: Aww ...
["Topeka Today" appears on screen]



My Darlin' Joan

A widower (Taran Killam) teams with a musician (Blake Shelton) to pen an ode to his dearly departed wife (Kate McKinnon).

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