This week James Franco hosted Saturday Night Live and it may have been the best episode of the season so far. It felt like a mid season finale, with cameos from comedy giants including Steve Martin, and some of Franco’s buddies like Seth Rogen, and Jonah Hill who made appearances during Franco’s Q&A monologue. This was Franco’s fourth time hosting SNL.
The show took a break from it’s Donald Trump centric cold opens to show off one of the funniest and most politically on point sketches of the season. Kenan Thompson played Santa Claus trying to answer questions from some very politically curious kids who have more on their mind than toys this year. A young man named Tyler asked a flustered Santa “Can you tell me…what did Al Franken do?” Santa told Tyler, “I guess you could say that Al Franken is on Santa’s naughty list this year” to which Tyler replied “and what about Roy Moore? Which list is he on?” Santa got some help fielding questions from his helper elf, “Sugar Plum” played by Kate McKinnon who asked to be called “Amy” in this climate. Santa also addressed questions about President Donald Trump, apologizing, NFL players who kneel during the national anthem, tax cuts, medicare, white power, opiods, Tel Aviv, and even Matt Lauer.
Sexual harassment continued to be a theme throughout the night with a great sketch that pokes fun at America’s rush to suddenly be so responsive to allegations of sexual misconduct. The sketch titled Sexual Harassment Charlie focuses on Beta Corp, a fictional company that has decided to terminate the company CEO (played by Franco), and their front desk guy Charlie (Kenan Thompson) for differing levels of misconduct. Female employees played by Melissa Villaseñor, Cecily Strong, and Leslie Jones react.
Fans of Dan Aykroyd’s classic Julia Child sketch will either love or hate the Franco remake of the concept, this time not as Childs but as a dedicated Bloomingdale’s gift wrapper with an out of control wound during the height of the Christmas season.
And Weekend Update took shots at Trump’s decision to move the US Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, Trump’s slurred speech incident, Trump’s doctor, and the resignation of three members of Congress due to sexual harassment allegations including Al Franken. Che calls out the Democrats for having too high of a moral high ground. “Democrats hope that by forcing Al Franken to step down, they will paint themselves as the party of the moral highground. Calm down Democrats. You’re still politicans. YOu’re the party of the morality the same way Don Jr. is the handsome Trump brother, nobody likes you.” And Jost criticized Trump supporting Roy Moore by saying “Go Get em.” He said, “Come on man, when you’re endorsing an accused child molester you can’t say Go Get ‘Em. This is’nt pedophile Pokemon.” Other topics covered included the White House Hannukah party, Pizza Hut, the Los Angeles wildfires, dollar drinks at Applebee’s, R. Kelly, and a woman who claims she has had sex with ghosts. You can also watch Che go undercover as a really liberal white woman named Gretchen, which he did to try to understand the perspective of the white women who often write him complaining about his perspectives on SNL. In the digital short, Che said he had to prepare to learn to talk like a liberal white woman by going on Yelp, reading Huffington Post articles, listening to the most ignorant rap music he could find, and reading a Lena Dunham book. You can watch the short below.
Saturday Night Live returns next week with Kevin Hart hosting.