Who is Hosting Saturday Night Live Tonight: April 20, 2019

Tonight, Saturday Night Live begins two weeks of repeats with an epic encore SNL episode hosted by John Mulaney!

Saturday Night Live is on a break tonight before it ends with a run of new shows to wrap up SNL – Season 44. The repeat SNL chosen to air tonight at 11:30pm on NBC is a fantastic show which brings back one of America’s top comedians, John Mulaney, to host for the second time in less than a year.

Even though tonight’s Saturday Night Live is an encore presentation from last month, there’s still some fresh SNL news to report. Executive producer Lorne Michaels and Saturday Night Live have announced the final hosts and musical guests of the season. New SNL episodes begin on Saturday, May 4th with former cast member Adam Sandler hosting for the first time ever with musical guest, pop heartthrob Shawn Mendes. That’s followed by another first time host who happens to be a two-time Oscar winner, Emma Thompson with musical guests, pop heartthrobs times 3, the Jonas Brothers on Saturday, May 11th. Then on Saturday, May 18th, it’s the Saturday Night Live season finale with Paul Rudd who will be hosting for his fourth time with musical guest DJ Khaled, who is definitely considered a pop heartthrob by someone somewhere.

Back to tonight’s show hosted by John Mulaney, if there’s only one sketch to catch tonight on this repeat episode of Saturday Night Live, it airs right after Weekend Update and its called “Bodega Bathroom“. If you remember last season when John Mulaney hosted SNL, the cast performed an elaborate musical sketch called “Diner Lobster“. The sketch began with a huge New York City faux pas. Cast members Pete Davidson and Chris Redd are in a diner and Pete orders the lobster….at a diner! New Yorkers know that this is never done. From there, the sketch turned into a parody of the Broadway hit, “Les Misérables.” In tonight’s repeat, you’ll see “Bodega Bathroom“, the next part in what John Mulaney hopes will become an SNL musical sketch trilogy.

Pete and Chris are again together, but this time in a Manhattan bodega where Pete asks to use the bathroom. Another New York City no-no! No one has ventured into a bodega bathroom before for fear of how unsanitary it might actually be. Truly the stuff of New York City nightmares. Cue the orchestra! The SNL cast again breaks into Broadway musical style song and dance numbers. Kenan Thompson, who played the lobster in “Lobster Diner“, now plays a Willie Wonka inspired cat from “Cats” who is Pete’s toilet tour guide. Songs include parodies of hit numbers from “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: The Musical“, “The Candy Man“, “Little Shop of Horrors“, “Cats“, and a showstopper from the Tony Award winning musical “Rent“.

We can only hope that John Mulaney is invited back to host next year during SNL – Season 45 to complete his trilogy. He told Conan O’Brien where the third part of his musical opus might take place. Mulaney said it could be on the subway, saying “The G train is such a weird world of people and there’s always a seat that has a little level of soda just sitting in it. So that might be the next inspiration.”

As expected at the time that this particular episode drew closer to originally airing, Ben Stiller returned to Saturday Night Live for the cold open, as his signature Trump Gang character, the president’s former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen. The show’s opening sketch featured Stiller’s Cohen testifying in front of Congress to make up for his perjured testimony before. When this SNL episode originally ran on March 2, 2019, Cohen’s Congressional testimony was talk of cable news channels and late night talk shows for days.

The Congressional sketch features the SNL cast members doing their best impressions of the House Oversight Committee, including Kenan Thompson as Chairman Rep. Elijah Cummings, Melissa Villaseñor as House darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Heidi Gardner as Rep. Jackie Speier (D) California, Kate McKinnon doing a spot-on Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D) Florida, Kyle Mooney as Rep. Paul Gosar (R) Arizona and Alex Moffat as Rep. Mark Meadows (R) North Carolina, with all of them questioning the man who our Commander-in-Chief labeled as a “rat”.

There’s also another special guest cameo in tonight’s SNL repeat cold open. We’ll go ahead and keep that one a repeat secret just in case you don’t remember who it might be and want the thrill of hearing audience’s roaring laughter and applause once again. We will tell you that he plays Rep. Jim Jordan (R – Ohio) perfectly, which isn’t an easy impression to do, part angry Congressman on a volcanic scale, part accused former assistant college wrestling coach who allegedly turned a blind eye to athletes being molested by a doctor at Ohio State University. Talk about a complex role.

It always feels great when you see an SNL host get introduced by announcer Darrell Hammond for the monologue segment and see them take the stage with a handheld mic which means we’re going to get a true stand up comedy monologue. Mulaney came out with his own hilarious personalized brand of over-confidence combined with self-deprecation, proclaiming that he’s the host of Saturday Night Live every week! He then goes immediately into a story where he’s being complimented and insulted at the same time. Mulaney is perfect at projecting this kind of hilarious false bravado on stage. He discusses his inter-faith marriage, his French Bulldog Petunia and told a story about when his wife, his dog Petunia, Woody Allen and Soon Yi Previn all met, plus he takes on the NYC subway system and police sirens during the monologue, which is all totally worth checking out again on tonight’s SNL rerun.

There’s two SNL – Digital Shorts on tonight’s repeat including a parody spot for the “Toilet Death Ejector” a device that makes dying on the can a little more dignified for the elderly. If it’s possible to have an interesting side story to an SNL – Digital Short literally titled “Toilet Death Ejector“, of course Mulaney can provide one. The idea and script for “Toilet Death Ejector” are from 10 years ago. John Mulaney along with writers Simon Rich and Marika Sawyer, wrote “Toilet Death Ejector” in 2009 when the trio were a writing team on Saturday Night Live. This and and the sketch “What’s That Name?” which you’ll see tonight, were both conceived and written a decade ago and both finally made it to Saturday Night Live in tonight’s episode. On a personal note, I’m happy to announce that I just won an inter-office contest at the IBang for who could fit the words “Toilet Death Ejector” into a paragraph the most times.

In the second SNL – Digital Short you’ll see tonight, Pete Davidson returns as his slightly dim, overly easy-going, monosyllabic, recurring character Chad which is always a hit on social media. This time, Chad finds himself in the middle of a “Scream” style horror movie. But no matter how terrifying the situation might be, don’t expect to hear Chad actually scream.

The sketches in tonight’s encore SNL include the game show sketch “What’s That Name?” we mentioned earlier where host John Mulaney competes against cast member Cecily Strong and a sadistic game show host who you won’t want to miss ( or miss again, since this is a repeat SNL tonight). Other sketches include a wedding reception scene where John Mulaney is meeting his girlfriend’s (cast member Ego Nwodim) family and friends for the first time and he must put his “Cha Cha Slide” moves to the test on the dance floor.

Also tonight, SNL parodies the ABC reality show “Shark Tank” with a sketch called “Shark Tank: Legal Edition” including the legal sharks; porn star lawyer Michael Avenatti played by cast member Pete Davidson, along with Cecily Strong doing her impression of “Fox News banshee” Jeanine Pirro, host John Mulaney as legal whiz Alan Dershowitz, cast member Kate McKinnon’s own unique version of Rudy Giuliani and Alex Moffat and Kyle Mooney as the NYC law firm attorneys known for their TV spots, Cellino & Barnes. The panel of legal sharks hear pleas from celebrity defendants including Pats owner Robert Kraft (cast member Beck Bennett) and Jussie Smollett (cast member Chris Redd).

Kenan Thompson brings back his “PBS Cinema Classics” host character, Reese De’What!! for a sketch which reenacts a movie clip from the 1944 war romance film, “To Have and To Have Not” starring Humphrey Bogart (Mulaney) and Lauren Bacall (McKinnon) which was Bacall’s first feature film role and is known for the classic line, “You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together – and blow.” The sketch revolves around Bacall’s inability to pull off the line.

In an odd set of circumstances, the movie sketch was followed by the second performance from musical guest Thomas Rhett which ended up being the final segment of the night. As regular SNL watchers know, Saturday Night Live always ends with a sketch before the curtain call, and usually it’s a pretty goofy one. A musical guest rarely wraps the show. However on this night, the “Bathroom Bodega” sketch ran so long, it made the entire show run late, so this SNL episode ended with the musical guest performing followed by sounds of the SNL band playing while different bumper photos of John Mulaney were shown on screen. That was followed by some extremely quick thank you’s from Mulaney with the cast and the guest stars. It will be interesting to see if this particular repeat will be retooled to wrap up in a more orderly fashion or if they will leave it exactly as it originally aired. Tune in tonight to find out.

Before discussing tonight’s SNL news segment, here’s a quick comment about Weekend Update. Each week on SNL, no matter if the sketches kill or not, or if the host is a hit or a miss, the most consistently funny part of Saturday Night Live is Weekend Update. After an initially uncomfortable start back in 2014 (Wait! Has it really been 5 years already!?) when Colin Jost and Michael Che were first teamed together, the news anchors eventually gelled and have become one of the most regularly hilarious comedy teams on television today. When the pairing was first announced, Colin Jost was already at the SNL anchor desk, then working with Cecily Strong. And Michael Che, who the comedy business already knew as an extremely talented stand up and writer had just left a quick stint at the Daily Show. There was trepidation though at the beginning of the partnership on behalf of the audience who was wondering if Weekend Update was the right fit for Che’s talents. SNL fans, including us, are so glad that Lorne Michaels had the vision for Jost & Che and stuck with his plan because it has obviously worked out even better than anyone could have hoped for. Besides Weekend Update, Jost and Che have hosted their own summer comedy series on NBC, been a part of the biggest sports entertainment event of the year, WrestleMania and they hosted last fall’s Primetime Emmy Awards. That’s why Lorne Michaels has been the boss for the majority of Saturday Night Live‘s 44 years.

Tonight’s segment is no exception to how funny Weekend Update can be, as the SNL news team handles the headlines of former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen’s salacious testimony in front of Congress. Michael Che, who has totally found his own voice on Update puts it this way tonight; “Why you actin’ like a bitch now?” referring to Cohen. “Your voice wasn’t trembling when you was threatening school teachers and shakin’ down porn stars. I want to hear THAT guy talk to Congress! At least Donald Trump has the decency to slowly fall apart until he’s dragged off in handcuffs like a boss! I mean that’s how I want to leave SNL!”

Jost & Che also discussed the North Korea – U.S. Summit collapsing, Trump’s weirdo address to the CPAC convention including his bizarre flag hugging, R. Kelly’s legal and financial problems, Bryce Harper’s giant contract with the Philadelphia Phillies, Target’s new line of lingerie, a crab leg buffet fight in Alabama, and a man who faked his own kidnapping to keep from paying off a Super Bowl bet.

Tonight, cast members Kate McKinnon and Aidy Bryant visit the Weekend Update news desk as Vaneta and Wylene Starkie, the owners of Smokery Farms to talk about “Picasso” the pig who can paint and who is selling its artwork for thousands of dollars. The Starkie Sisters don’t appreciate what these amazingly talented animals like Picasso are doing to the meat farming industry. After all, these animals are becoming too beloved to eat. Aidy Bryant’s character with its southern accent and giant wig is strongly reminiscent of her Wynonna Judd impression. Also watch for McKinnon and Bryant having a lot of trouble holding it together as the actual smells of their meat gift basket they present to Jost & Che starts to get to them on live TV.

In the SNL promos which you can enjoy below for tonight’s Saturday Night Live rerun, John Mulaney explains his history with SNL including his long, long run of failed auditions while trying to join the show’s cast. In the next set, Mulaney is joined by musical guest Thomas Rhett and Kate McKinnon who’s very excited for the host’s monologue and to watch “these two gorgeous nephews make their aunts and uncles proud”, plus we hear a rejected promo from John Mulaney’s days as an SNL staff writer.

John Mulaney hosts an encore presentation of Saturday Night Live with musical guest Thomas Rhett tonight at 11:30pm et on NBC!

SNL returns live in two weeks on Saturday, May 4th with host Adam Sandler!

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