Oval Office Cold Open
*Sigh* Another Trump Cold Open started this week’s Saturday Night Live. We know what we’re getting here, some funny lines from Baldwin, an amusing Grim Reaper take on Steve Bannon, and a series of increasingly goofy interaction with different world leaders. Highlights being McKinnon’s “I miss Barack” line, Baldwin’s “My Struggle” line (for those who didn’t get it that’s what Mein Kampf means), and Kenan calling him a white bitch.
Kristen Stewart Monologue
Kristen Stewart’s opening monologue almost left zero impression with me, almost. Calling out Trump for tweeting so much about her relationship with Robert Pattinson years ago was pretty funny. I also got confused when she declared herself gay, though she’s been not so secretly bisexual for years. I’m assuming the word usage was done to pack more punch but I still didn’t know exactly what to make of it. McKinnon and Bryant acting like “cool kids” didn’t really do anything for me. A bit of a snore until Stewart dropped an F-bomb at the end of her monologue. Is that a record for earliest swear in SNL history? Certainly seems like it. That’s one way to wake up an audience.
A digital short on immigration procedures was first on tonight’s docket. Heavily “edited” to reflect all the recent changes, I loved everything about this piece. The way it was shot and presented had exactly that cheap corporate quality you expect. A pretty straightforward joke but very well executed.
UConn Dry Fridays was a weird and mostly unfunny sketch about college kids forced to attend meetings after being caught with booze. Starting with stereotypical idiot college students talking bout Za and saying Noice!, this was another sketch of one person telling a story, second person telling something slightly worse and third character telling a ridiculous story. Lather, rinse, repeat. Stewart was fine here but the material was just weak. The bit about pooping an egg made me laugh pretty hard but otherwise I found it boring.
Yay another Totino’s Super Bowl commercial. First off, the original is still much funnier. However, the lesbian love affair and the hilarious way it was presented was a great twist on what we expected to get this second go around. With Kristen Stewart as the hot guest who seduces Bayer’s perky housewife, the whole thing went from cheesy commercial to French New Wave film. I especially liked Bayer’s response when asked her name, “I never had one.” Probably Stewart’s best performance of the evening.
Sean Spicer Press Conference
Now to what most people are seeing in their social media feeds this week. The Sean Spicer press briefing with Melissa McCarthy. Everyone else in this sketch is just there to feed her set-ups and McCarthy absolutely killed this one. Best sketch of the night hands down, and one of the year’s best. From the “I don’t talk good” line to the gum wad, so many great moments. That whole prop sequence, while a bit shaky once or twice, was funny, fast and cleverly set up. I mean come on when you hear Muslim now who isn’t going to think Moose-Lamb? CNN being caged and in a diaper, just too many funny things for one sketch. Even tagging it with the “Live from New York” was a stroke of genius. Perfection!
“Weekend Update” was kind of a mess this week. Even referencing Kristen Stewart’s verbal flub from the top of the show didn’t aptly describe the cluster they had. With some decent jokes likes the La La Land white ban, Che completely choking on one joke, even with multiple attempts, then after another tired David Ortiz bit with Kenan (except Little Scissors, that was great), Jost tried to end “Update,” forgetting that there was a whole other segment left to do. An unusually weak outing for the “Update” desk.
Celebrity Family Feud: Super Bowl Edition
A Super Bowl was also strangely weak. Normally a solid and easy sketch choice, it just seemed stretched too thin with too many characters and not enough material. Leslie Jones as Samuel L. Jackson and Kenan’s reaction to her were solid as was their Casey Affleck impression. But I was unimpressed.
“Meet Cute” was an entertaining take on romantic comedies. With Kristen Stewart and Pete Davidson as an adorkable couple meeting for the first time and making date plans, without the planning part. The rest of this short follows her prep for the date and his figuring out where she is. A clever look at a common plot hole in many romantic films. Very cute, not terribly funny, but well produced.
The last sketch of the evening recreated a beloved moment from Willy Wonka. The Golden Ticket scene with Grandpa Joe getting out of bed for the first time. Great concept and funny angle. Some very funny lines about the grandmas scissoring and washing the other grandfather’s balls, but this went nowhere. With such a great set up there should have been loads of material here. Instead this one just petered out to nothing.
Alessia Cara performed “Scars to Your Beautiful” and “River of Tears”. The young singer seems like someone who could grow into a real superstar, someday. A bit repetitive in her lyrics for the first number, the second was where you saw her real potential. In a stripped down performance with piano accompaniment, she reminds me a bit of Sia if not as well seasoned yet.
Aside from her potty mouth, Kristen Stewart barely made an impression during her hosting duties. Luckily the cast and guest stars did more than enough to pick up the slack. The Sean Spicer sketch alone made this worth watching. Some giant highs and not any real terrible lows put this outing in the slightly better than average column.
What did you think of this week’s episode? Tell us in the comments below!