Last night, fans said “goodnight” to Saturday Night Live for another summer as the show closed out it’s 45th season.
The cast and crew of SNL pulled another remote episode together to give the season a farewell it deserves, as best they can.
Kirsten Wiig was the episode’s “host” – the host’s job for these “At Home” episodes simply a solitary monologue, a farewell before the credit roll and introducing the musical guest. But Kristen Wiig did appear in a sketch, and it was Michael Che who introduced the musical guest Boyz II Men. So she got to mix it up – but she’s allowed, she’s alumnus you know.
The episode opened with a classic Donald Trump saying idiotic things sketch. This time, he was addressing a high school class at their online graduation.
Baldwin adding “taped from my home, one last time” to his Trump-tinted episode introduction was a good glimmer of hope. Hope, of course, that the COVID-19 crisis will be well under control by the time NBC is ready to make more Saturday Night Live episodes.
Like the previous At Home episodes, this one featured a handful of cameos. Martin Short showed up; Josh Gad appeared “as Olaf” for a musical number about letting children get drunk during quarantine; Danny Trejo guested as himself for a classic Pete Davidson/Chris Redd celebrity-themed rap. Oh, and Tina Fey “popped in” on Weekend Update to do another one of her sorry-not-sorry aggressive rants, this time about isolation.
Weekend Update is probably the only part of the At Home show that is barely affected. Jost and Che have great chemistry in each other’s presence, this we know. And luckily, that also seems to extend to video conferencing as well. After that, the only thing missing was the audience reaction. But if you laugh loud enough at home, you wouldn’t even notice it missing!
The sketches were pretty out there this week as well. It seems like the crew had some more fun and freedom when it came to experimenting with different ideas – such as Aidy Bryant’s uncanny valley-fueled Eleanor’s House, or the shared-fever-dream farewell the cast gave as they were superimposed over iconic New York locations.
All and all, a five-star season from Saturday Night Live, even if it was cut short and had a few “make-do” episodes. But the creativity that flourished despite the restrictions over the past few episodes has breathed some new and refreshing life into SNL, and if the show does go on, it will only be better for having done it!
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