This week’s episode of Saturday Night Live featured Claire Foy as the guest host. For a first-time host who isn’t known for her comedy chops, Foy did really well. She was often the best part of the sketches she was in. The Crown star showcased her range, committed to characters, and even showed off a multitude of accents she can do. While Foy shined, the episode overall had some hits and some misses. See what we had to see about each sketch and how they rank on our patent-pending SNL star scale!
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This political cold open leaves a lot to be desired. There are a lot of celebrity cameos that will get a woo, but there are not that many laughs in the almost seven-minute sketch. Alec Baldwin is back to play Donald Trump after his recent parking space freak out, which he does reference in the sketch, but it is nothing more than a throwaway line that the audience doesn’t react to. The other issue in this sketch might be a personal pet peeve of this reviewer, but can we be done with Trump and Putin are gay for each other jokes? At this point not only is it lazy, but it does real harm to the LGBTQ community. And to do it on World AIDS Day no less. As a side note, they also had Fred Armisen play Mohammed bin Salman. Next time maybe get someone who is Arab.
Foy comes off as likable and cute in the monologue. It is one of the shortest monologues in recent memory and is far more traditional than the show has recently allowed. No cast members come out to join her; there is no song and dance. She just tells a humorous story. It shows that Foy is confident enough to lead the show by all by herself.
Dad Christmas is great. While the idea might not be the most original, the jokes are funny and Aidy Bryant really shines. When she starts singing a parody of Last Christmas, you realize that even if the premise is not the freshest, they took it to new places. This sketch is laugh-out-loud funny and I am sure will be aired on many Christmas Best Of episodes in the future.
War in Words
This sketch is funny. The only issue is it feels like they didn’t know how to end it. There is also a lot in this sketch that doesn’t go explained which will lead some viewers to exasperation. Even with its issues, this sketch packs a punch and features the right amount of absurdism balanced with classic sketch writing.
Morning Joe – The Wedding
This Morning Joe sketch is a little played out. Each episode really hits on the same jokes: Joe is in a band, the couple has gross sexual tension, and Joe talks over someone. It feels a little tired, but the impressions are solid and the jokes might not be fresh, but they are well done in this week’s version. For a Morning Joe, this is good but not the most memorable sketch of the night.
Weekend Update had two things going for it this week: Leslie Jones and Beck Bennett. The always-funny Jones came on to talk about quitting sex. Her energy is great, but she stumbles over a lot of the words causing the timing of jokes to be off. Bennett plays a character named Jules who is hysterical, but sadly the segment is too short to save the whole Update. Colin Jost and Michael Che’s jokes often fell flat, but their most confusing inclusion was a tribute to George H.W. Bush. They intro a clip about how the former president could laugh at himself. In the clip, there is a montage of Dana Carvey doing a Bush impression before an old clip of the president coming on to say he doesn’t talk like that.
This sketch is fun and actually gives better ideas for content than some of what Netflix is actually making. Also, we all know that we would watch Jones in a Van getting Batteries.
This sketch has a funny premise, but it goes on for entirely too long. The ending has a good twist, but before that there is really only one joke and it gets too stretched out.
Good Morning Goomah
This sketch feels very SNL. The series loves a fake talk show that takes place out of two zany characters’ house. This one works because the Staten Island home wreckers who star in it are so pitch perfect. It’s a great twist on a classic format.
This sketch is surprisingly good for the premise “old people having sex is funny.” That being said, it relies a little too much on gross-out humor. Pete Davidson getting a foot to the face is certainly a highlight though.