A few key members of the SNL cast and crew must love “The Californians” because the much-derided sketch was brought back to life for the show’s star-studded 40th anniversary special. For those of us who have always enjoyed this bizarre sketch (and there are about three of us), it’s a welcome return and we will greedily drink up the angry tears of everyone else.
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We knew going in that the SNL 40th anniversary special would be chock-full of just about every famous person who has ever walked within spitting distance of 30 Rockefeller Plaza and the opening monologue was quick to make use of this genuinely insane temporary cast of stars. Things got started on the right foot when the always-welcome Steve Martin took the stage ... but then he was joined by Tom Hanks. And then things got really crazy.
In the midst of an otherwise dull (and occasionally painful) red carpet special that aired before the SNL 40th anniversary show, special guest Jim Carrey livened things up by by making Matt Lauer really uncomfortable. His comedic weapon of choice? The recently suspended/disgraced NBC newsman Brian Williams.
What would a SNL 40th Anniversary Special be without Celebrity Jeopardy, one of the most popular recurring sketches of the modern SNL era. Alex Trebek was back and he brought with him some of his most frustrating contestants including Sir Sean Connery, Justin Bieber, Tony Bennett, Matthew McConaughey, Christoph Waltz, and, of course, Turd Ferguson.
The SNL 40th Anniversary Special started off like you thought it might with two of its most popular modern day partners, Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake. The two took the stage for the show's cold open and sang, danced and rapped their way through 40 years of SNL history (with a few special guests, of course).
To honor the 40th anniversary of SNL, we thought now would be a great time to take a look back at some of our favorite, most memorable characters from Season 1 to now. With so many classic SNL stars returning for the 40th anniversary special, and so many other great celeb friends of the show putting in a special appearance, we are properly pumped for this epic celebration. To get you in the spirit, we've put together this photo gallery of the best, most hilarious and most memorable SNL characters and sketches from the past 40 years, from Nick the Lounge Singer up to Stefon and beyond. Happy anniversary, SNL!
Just when you thought Sunday’s SNL 40th anniversary special couldn’t get any bigger, NBC juices both the runtime and star power. Not only will the extravagant birthday of New York’s most famous sketch comedy series run an additional half hour, but added to the guest list are Billy Crystal and Bradley Cooper, along with a number of other famous stars and alum.
We won’t have any fresh ‘SNL’ to enjoy this weekend, though admittedly with good reason after NBC dropped the three-promo bombshell of its 40th anniversary special’s ludicrous star power. Well, add another name to the list, as former Alaska governor Sarah Palin will join the anniversary festivity to reprise her role as Tina Fey’s breakout character!
Merciful Zeus, if you thought Eddie Murphy returning to ‘SNL’ after 31 years for the 40th anniversary special on February 15 was big enough, wait until you get a load of the full roster. Rivaling turnout for the Emmys and Oscars combined, the upcoming ‘SNL’ reunion will feature everyone from legendary alumni like Bill Murray, Tina Fey and Chevy Chase, to favorite hosts like Alec Baldwin, and even Taylor Swift, why not!
After the disappointment that was last week’s episode with country superstar Blake Shelton, we could desperately use another great show from ‘SNL.’ Recent Golden Globe winner and Oscar nominee J.K. Simmons has arrived to perk things up a bit, bringing his versatile character actor chops to the stage as this week’s host. But did he live up to our expectations? Read on for this week’s ‘SNL’ rankings!