Last night on The Tonight Show, Jimmy Fallon welcomed Seth Rogen and Zac Efron to participate in what has come to be known as the “Ew!” sketch. I don’t know what your opinion of this sketch is, but I personally think we all need to conduct a little intervention for Jimmy asking him to please just stop it. For something that was barely funny the first time it happened, he sure has done it a lot.
The earliest example I’m aware of was with Emma Stone on Late Night back in 2011. The whole concept of the sketch is that Jimmy’s a teenage girl who like hosts a show for like talking like a Valley girl and like saying “ew” about like pretty much everything. He’s since done it with various celebrities, male and female, from Channing Tatum to Lindsay Lohan to Michelle Obama and Will Ferrell. Of course when the guests are male they dress like girls because HA HA cross-dressing!
The concept is just not that funny to begin with, but I suppose for a one-time weird thing it could be confusingly amusing, especially when a particularly likable celebrity is involved. But if this were on SNL, it would be considered mediocre at best, and likely no one would remember it a week later. I doubt it would be done again, let alone so many times. I realize the set and costumes now exist, and they shouldn’t go to waste, but is there any way to recycle them for a sketch that feels a little more original?
I love Jimmy’s approach to late night, and I usually have a lot of fun watching what he and his writers come up with for each episode. And it can’t be easy coming up with new sketches and games and making sure they’re shareable and fun. But one of the weaknesses of The Tonight Show, as with Late Night, is the habit of driving things into the ground. Kind of like how Jimmy loved doing things with Justin Timberlake so much he devoted a whole week to him, and by the end of it I was begging for a TimberBreak.
There are certain things that I enjoy as recurring segments – the Brian Williams raps continue to impress me and make me smile, for instance. And the lip sync battles are consistently adorable. But something as weird and ridiculous as “Ew!” should really only be done once. JUST MAKE IT STOP! (I will say that Zac Efron makes a beautiful lady, however.)