It’s Time To Agree That ‘Dear Sister’ Is The Best SNL Short Of All Time
From Imogen Heap to 'The O.C.' to SNL, 'Hide and Seek' will never be the same.
The 2007 Saturday Night Live sketch ‘Dear Sister’ is arguably one of the greatest pieces of comedy to come out of SNL.
Sparking the absolute piss-take that forms the basis of millennial humour, ‘Dear Sister’ is a homage to televisions most dramatic scene ever: The Season 2 finale of The O.C.
i pinpointed the exact moment millennial humor became this sort of fucked up weird and vague disturbing humor that is very difficult to understand from the outside looking in. essentially our downward spiral began with this video pic.twitter.com/7ZUBM00f0c
— nick ◟̽◞̽ (@habitdyke) November 27, 2017
In the SNL Digital Short, a whole lot of gunfire and dramatic slow motion looks to camera occur.
Keith (Andy Samberg) shoots Dave (Bill Hader) who shoots Eric (Shia LaBeouf), then all three fire at Keith’s sister (Kristen Wiig) multiple times. Then two cops (Jason Sudeikis and Fred Armisen) arrive at the crime scene and end up shooting each other after reading a letter titled ‘Dear Sister’, which details the exact events that unfolded.
OK, maybe writing that out doesn’t sound all that funny. But it’s the melodrama of the scene coupled with ‘Hide and Seek‘ by Imogen Heap replaying on each gunshot that really makes it.
Honestly, the scene is perfect. It makes no sense, but it’s funny.
Please enjoy it with me one more time:
The Orange County And The Original
To understand why millennials find the sketch so damn funny, you need know what inspired the Digital Short.
comedy was invented on April 14th 2007 with the release of The Shooting aka Dear Sister SNL short
— Jake Fishbowl ⎊✌️ (@_shannon93) September 10, 2019
One of the biggest teen drama series of the 2000s was The O.C. The show revolved around troubled teen Ryan Atwood, and the highs and lows he faced after being adopted by a wealthy family from the Orange County.
Throughout the show he faced troubles with his on-again-off-again girlfriend, Marissa Cooper. So it’s really no surprise that at the end of the second season, the biggest drama and action revolved around the pair.
In the 2005 Season 2 finale titled ‘The Dearly Beloved’, Trey Atwood, Ryans older brother and an ex-con, gets into a fight with Ryan. After finding out that Trey tried to sleep with his girlfriend, Ryan confronts Trey at his apartment. Upon seeing the two fighting, with Ryan pinned to the floor, Marissa picks up Trey’s gun and shoots him in the back.
The song ‘Hide and Seek’ plays, and everyone dramatically looks at each other.
The Scene Andy Samberg Just Couldn’t Shake
Two years after the original scene from The O.C., ‘Dear Sister’ aired on SNL.
When speaking to EW, The Lonely Island (Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer) explained they were all “obsessed with the O.C.” Andy said that after hearing ‘Hide and Seek’ in the finale, they “all became somewhat obsessed with that song.”
the “dear sister” snl skit was my first introduction to snl and also true comedy. i have never laughed since and probably never will
— nat 🕯 (@nattypatters) March 29, 2019
“It’s a classic moment, and we love doing digital shorts about movie and TV tropes,” Andy continued. “The ‘Gunshot That Happens Off-Camera, and Then Everything Cranks Into Slo-mo and Someone Realises They Have Blood on Their Hands When They Look Up’ is a move done a bunch of times, and we always really loved it.”
So, inspired and ready, Andy took the idea to his castmates, filmed until 4am, and managed to produced one of the greatest scenes in television history.
bill hader in the every
dear sister snl skit other actor
— ari (@wasteIandbaby) September 14, 2019
The Song That Will Never Be The Same
Digital Shorts, while now unfortunately dead, were the peak of Saturday Night Live, and the show hasn’t been the same since. Nothing beat the rush of streaming an episode, seeing the screen fade to black and hearing the audience scream at the sight of ‘An SNL Digital Short’ on screen. Pure adrenaline, hey.
Popular Shorts like ‘Dick in a Box‘ with Justin Timberlake, ‘I Just Had Sex‘ with Akon, and ‘Jack Sparrow‘ with Michael Bolton, had a major cultural impact on millennials worldwide. Comedic music, really only produced by ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic prior, had major success thanks to The Lonely Island in the late 2000s and early 2010s.
The OC season finale that became the SNL sketch "Dear Sister" that formed a template for millennial meme-based humor https://t.co/W9SWVAWxqL
— Arthur Chu (@arthur_affect) November 20, 2018
Sketches like ‘Dear Sister’, which focused on an already existing track, had a similar impact too. Now forever associated with gunshots and Shia LaBeouf, ‘Hide and Seek’ by Imogen Heap will never be the same.
Hide and Seek by Imogen Heap is the greatest song of the 21st century but no one will ever take it seriously because of jason derulo's whatcha say sample and the dear sister SNL meme. in this essay i will
— jarod (@jarodzsz) July 21, 2018
Plus, following the infamous O.C. scene and the release of ‘Dear Sister’, Jason Derulo released ‘Whatcha Say’ – a pop track sampling ‘Hide and Seek’s most recognisable lyric, “Mmm, whatcha say?”.
Now I’m not necessarily saying that Jason Derulo was inspired by the Lonely Island, BUT ‘Whatcha Say’ was released in 2009, two years after the skit aired.
Now that’s what I call impact.