SNL’s Saturday return didn’t quite get everyone talking as much as the 40th anniversary special, but still left us with a few teasing bits to enjoy. Not only does a new deleted sketch reveal a first look at the 50 Shades of Grey sequel, but so too has cast vet Taran Killam come out in defense of the controversial ISIS sketch.
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Dakota Johnson truly impressed in Fifty Shades of Grey, bringing genuine humor and personality to a character who was entirely humorless and lifeless on the page. But can her likability and seemingly effortless talents translate to a solid hosting stint on SNL? Read on for this week's SNL sketches ranked from the greatest to the not-so-great.
Even when it’s at its best, modern SNL is rarely shocking. Funny, strange, silly and clever, sure. But shocking? Nah. The show doesn’t seem to set out to offend every week. So when the show broke out a fake commercial that depicted 50 Shades of Grey star and guest host Dakota Johnson joining the radical terrorist group ISIS, jaws rightfully hit the ground. Who approved this? And could they start approving more sketches?
With Dakota Johnson guest hosting, last night’s SNL had no shortage of 50 Shades of Grey jokes. For her part, Johnson seemed equally bemused and embarrassed by her controversial new hit, rolling with whatever the show threw at her and always coming out looking far better than her naysayers expected. Her ability to make fun of herself and the film that has turned her into an overnight movie star really came together in the only sketch of the night that required her to play herself.
Modern SNL has one of the strongest female line-ups in the show’s history, so it’s always a pleasure when the writers give this group of extremely funny ladies a chance to shine together. This sketch is a weird one because it feels like such an odd and specific concept that must have been a real pain in the butt to pitch in the writer’s room, but the execution is simply sublime: a group of women start being brutally honest with the people in their lives and immediately celebrate to the impossibly catchy sounds of Sara Bareilles’ “Brave.”
Now that SNL’s big 40th anniversary special lies behind us, with the God of Thunder in our future, this coming Saturday will whip SNL back into shape with the expert help of 50 Shades of Grey star Dakota Johnson. Preview our first post-40 SNL installment with all the Christian Grey references you can handle in the latest promo!
The gallant extravagance of NBC’s 40th anniversary SNL special left us less-than-enthused for 50 Shades of Grey star Dakota Johnson to return us to normal this Saturday, but our first March host will verily bring the thunder. Thor himself, Chris Hemsworth will take the SNL stage as our March 7 host, but what musical accompaniment mayeth the Asgardian Avenger summon?
SNL’s 40th anniversary special had some real ups and downs (even “Californians” defenders can agree that sketch went on way too long), but it possibly could have benefitted from this Kyle Mooney segment, which was sadly cut for time. Mooney, who often plays socially inept/awkward characters in his SNL sketches, does his recurring bit where he interviews passerby on the streets of New York, this time about SNL’s 40th anniversary. Oddly enough, he seems to find plenty of people who are unaware of the show, as well as some who hilariously lack knowledge about a show they claim to enjoy.
SNL episodes are hard, often frenzied work, so you can imagine the sort of time and dedication and stress that went into the SNL 40 show, which featured new and former cast members along with several guest stars. One of the highlights of the three and a half hour event was the return of “Celebrity Jeopardy!” with Norm MacDonald, Will Ferrell and Darrell Hammond reprising their iconic sketch roles alongside fellow SNL stars, including Kenan Thompson doing a hilarious (and timely) Bill Cosby impression. But according to MacDonald, Thompson wasn’t originally supposed to be in the sketch: Eddie Murphy was.
One of the many highlights from last night’s SNL 40th anniversary special was the moment when new cast members Pete Davidson and Leslie Jones took to the stage, introducing a montage of audition tapes from the past 40 years. Not only did the footage include new and former cast members, but we also got a peek at the audition tapes of a few stars who surprisingly didn’t make the cut, like Jim Carrey and Kevin Hart.