Top 10 Funniest Animated SNL Sketches

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Top 10 Funniest Animated SNL Sketches

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Nick Spake
These animated "SNL" sketches put the fun in funhouse. Our countdown includes "Are You Hot?," "Charlie Brown Christmas," "The X-Presidents," and more!
Transcript

Top 10 Animated SNL Sketches


Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Animated SNL Sketches.

For this list, we’re taking a look at the best single or recurring instances when Saturday Night Live got animated. We’re excluding “Mr. Bill,” as it’s debatable if that recurring sketch truly counts as animation. We’re also leaving off “The David S. Pumpkins Animated Halloween Special,” as this list is for sketches only.

What’s your favorite animated “SNL” sketch? Let us know in the comments.

#10: “Cartoons and Your Government”


Classic cartoons have been subjected to censorship for a variety of reasons, some more ridiculous than others. This 2004 TV Funhouse segment takes aim at the FCC, specifically former chairman Michael Powell. Cracking down on what he considers cartoon nudity, Powell pixelates Donald Duck, Bugs Bunny, and Tweety Bird due to their wardrobe choices, or lack thereof. Ironically, the censorship makes these cartoons seem much dirtier than they actually are. An innocent conversation between Fred and Barney is turned into a “Basic Instinct” moment. All the censor bars in the world, however, can’t stop Howard Stern from going “Duck Amuck” on Powell. Coming out shortly after the Janet Jacket Super Bowl controversy, the segment makes immature yet clever commentary on censorship going too far.

#9: “Are You Hot?”


In 2003, ABC premiered what may be the most shallow reality show ever conceived. “Are You Hot?” wasn’t exactly a runaway hit, lasting only six episodes, but at least it gave us this hilarious TV Funhouse segment. Lorenzo Lamas, voicing himself, remains the judge, but now cartoon characters are in the Hot Zone. Lamas analyzes abnormalities such as Betty Boop’s head, Popeye’s muscles, and Marvin the Martian’s “tan.” Cinderella fares better, but she’s not flattered by Lamas’ comments. We are given some insight into how Barney Rubble found a partner way out of his league. While the segment explores how superficial we’ve become as a society, it also pokes fun at how many toons would be considered grotesque if they existed in real life.

#8: “Cokee, the Most Expensive Dog in the World”



This segment takes us back to a simpler time when Bennifer was Hollywood’s definitive power couple. Reportedly, during their relationship, Ben Affleck gifted Jennifer Lopez a 6.1-carat engagement ring, Rolls Royce Phantom, and jewel-encrusted toilet. But Ben misfires in this sketch when he buys his beloved a dog resembling Robert Duvall. To make J.LO happy, Ben has the dog trained to talk like the Oscar-winning actor. While having a talking dog should be enough to satisfy anybody, Ben and J.LO are disappointed when he sounds less like Duvall and more like James Woods. This surreal story culminates with Ben trying to pay the real Duvall to dress as a dog. The things celebrities do for love and money.

#7: “The All-New Adventures of Mr. T”


There was a time when any celebrity could get their own cartoon. Even Mr. T got animated in a show that ran from 1983 to 1985. In a pair of TV Funhouse sketches in 2000, Mr. T made the leap from Saturday Morning to Saturday Night. In both segments, Mr. T is joined by his gymnastics team and their mangy bulldog. Instead of solving mysteries, Mr. T now searches for work. Given his limited range, the offers aren’t pouring in, but that doesn’t stop Mr. T from forcing his way into a production of “A Doll's House” and a commercial. These sketches are only made funnier when stacked up against the original source material, which isn’t too different from the parody.

#6: “Bambi 2002”


Four years before Disney released “Bambi II,” TV Funhouse beat them to market with “Bambi 2002.” To update “Bambi” for modern audiences, this follow-up switches out the original’s soothing musical score for rap songs that would make MC Hammer cringe. We also get David Spade’s leftovers from “The Emperor’s New Groove” and a celebrity cameo that didn’t age well (Jared Fogel). The sketch more than earns the “2002” in its title, taking us back to a time when “Matrix” parodies were just starting to get old, the New York Yankees were still World Series favorites, and Disney was rushing out straight-to-video sequels to their animated classics. Some things are better left in the Disney Vault, but any movie that mixes “Bambi,” “Akira,” and “Shrek” must be seen.

#5: “Middle-Aged Mutant Ninja Turtles”


“SNL” hasn’t aired a TV Funhouse segment since 2011. When the pandemic hit in 2020, though, “SNL At Home” revisited animation. This nostalgic sketch catches up with the Ninja Turtles, but they’re no longer the goofy teenagers we grew to love in the ‘80s and ‘90s. Now middle-aged, they have to deal with failed marriages and suspicious-looking lumps. It’s not like they need to thwart Shredder’s schemes anymore… because he’s dead. In another sketch that was cut for time later that year, we learn more about the turtles’ sex lives, parenting skills, and political views. We’ve seen other parodies imagine what the turtles might be like beyond their teenage years, but few have done a better job at capturing the mundane nature of middle-aged life.

#4: “Charlie Brown Christmas”


TV Funhouse parodied a few holiday classics. 2005’s “Christmastime for the Jews,” for example, recreated the look of the beloved Rankin-Bass stop-motion specials with a Darlene Love sound. In another Christmastime sketch, TV Funhouse pointed out one of the biggest lapses in cartoon logic. You know how Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree is basically a twig that struggles to support one ornament? Then when the other kids show up, they somehow turn it into a thriving tree by waving their arms around? Well, if it worked with a tree, surely it’ll also work on a car, snow angels, and celebrities, making the Peanuts gang a pretty penny. Sometimes limited animation techniques lead to big bucks and even bigger laughs.

#3: “The X-Presidents”


Forget the X-Men. This is the ultimate superhero team! Debuting in 1997 when Bill Clinton was in office, this recurring sketch centered on the four living U.S. ex-presidents at the time. Each member brings something unique to the team. Ronald Reagan is the no-nonsense leader, Jimmy Carter is the heart, Gerald Ford is the party dude, and George H.W. Bush… well, let’s just say that he has a very healthy relationship with the former first lady. Even after George W. Bush is elected, Clinton can’t get an invite, although Ron Reagan Jr. does take his father’s place following his passing. Together, they defend America from aliens, a Constitution gone bad, and the Powerpuff Girls.

#2: “Journey to the Disney Vault”


Of all the Mouse House parodies TV Funhouse gave us, none delivered more laughs per second than “Journey to the Disney Vault.” If you thought “Bambi 2002” was an absurd idea, you haven’t seen Quasimodo snowboard or Mulan fight alien robots. The only downside is that all of these movies are in the Disney Vault. Two lucky kids get a firsthand look at the vault with Mickey as their guide. Things that a dark turn when they stumble upon several chapters in Disney history that the company would like the public to forget about. With uproarious satires like this, however, we never will. What’s next, Disney does “Titanic?” Well… at least it doesn’t have any rapping dogs or magic moonbeams.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

“The Anatominals”
Now, This Is the Cartoon That Probably Should’ve Been Censored

“Maraka”
Parents Should Pay More Attention to What Their Toddlers Watch

“Globetrotters X-Mas”
Surprisingly, Not Even the Weirdest Globetrotters Cartoon

"25th Anniversary Special – Lorne Michaels"
The Big Boss Likes Being in Charge

“Shazzang”
We Don’t Remember “Shazzan” Ever Getting This Gratuitous

#1: “The Ambiguously Gay Duo”


Before they were on “SNL,” the Ambiguously Gay Duo made their debut on “The Dana Carvey Show.” Although that series didn’t last long, it paved the way for co-creator Robert Smigel to produce cartoons on “SNL.” Eschewing homophobic humour — though still perhaps too much of its era to fly with today’s social mores — Gary and Ace the superheroes quickly became synonymous with TV Funhouse, and the segments pushed the limits of late-night television. Most of the humor with the dynamic duo revolves around their potential sexual orientation, and their crime-fighting exploits definitely led to some of the most suggestive one-liners and positions in network animation... not to mention a catchy theme song.
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