Saturday Night Live is back and all-new tonight with a host / musical guest who says SNL can’t go live “Without Me”. It’s Halsey!
This evening, Billboard Music Award winner and Grammy nominee Halsey takes on the herculean task of being both the host and musical guest on tonight’s new SNL, live coast-to-coast at 11:30pm et on NBC. Halsey is coming off the success of her first #1 single “Without Me,” topping the Hot 100 charts last month. The single which was released without an album, was the number one selling song in the United States for 6 weeks. Halsey is enjoying amazing success in her singing career since getting signed in 2014. Her two studio albums, “Badlands” (2015) and “Hopeless Fountain Kingdom” (2017) both reached #1 and were certified platinum.
The musical guest half of Halsey’s double-duty on Saturday Night Live tonight should be a no-brainer, and for those wondering how she’ll do on the acting side this evening as a first-time SNL host, Halsey does have some limited experience. She’s done voice work for the cartoon series “American Dad!” and in the “Teen Titans Go! To the Movies” animated feature. She also has a cameo as herself in the Academy Award nominated film, “A Star Is Born” starring Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga. And even though she’s a first-time SNL host, the 8th first-timer this season alone, Halsey does have previous Saturday Night Live experience. She was a musical guest last year during SNL – Season 43. She made her Saturday Night Live debut when Sam Rockwell hosted the show in January, 2018. Halsey must have really impressed Lorne Michaels last season to have been asked to return and not only sing two numbers, but also host an entire episode.
Tonight, Halsey immediately joins an elite group of performers who have hosted Saturday Night Live while being their own musical guest on the same show. Before this evening’s SNL, the most recent entertainer to do that was Donald Glover who hosted Saturday Night Live while his alter-ego Childish Gambino was the musical guest. Not to stray too far away from Halsey, but Glover falls into an even more specific group of people who have hosted while a character they created was the musical guest. This includes host Garth Brooks and musical guest Chris Gaines during SNL‘s silver anniversary Season 25 , and also Lily Tomlin who back in SNL – Season 8 in 1983 was her own musical guest under the guise of one of her many signature characters, soul singer Pervis Hawkins. Yeah, we know what you’re thinking. Blackface. We’ll get to that topic in a moment.
Halsey follows in the footsteps of other Saturday Night Live hosts who have done double-duty as the musical guest such as Paul Simon (1975), Desi Arnaz (1976), Ray Charles (1977), Frank Zappa (1978), Deborah Harry (1981), Stevie Wonder (1983), Willie Nelson (1987), Sting (1991), Queen Latifah (2004), Taylor Swift (2009), Bruno Mars (2012), Justin Bieber (2013), Blake Shelton (2015), and Ariana Grande (2016 sorry, Pete) just to name some that have pulled off this entertainment achievement. And of course, there’s the performers who have done it on more than one occasion like Britney Spears (2000, 2002), J-Lo (2001, 2010), Miley Cyrus (2013, 2015), Drake (2014, 2016), and the three-peating king of them all, Justin Timberlake (2003, 2006, 2013).
Tonight, it will be interesting to see if and how Saturday Night Live handles the main topic that has dominated the week on social media and the cable news channels, which is “blackface” or more specifically, how just about every Virginia politician in the commonwealth it seems, has admitted to or been accused of wearing it at some point in their early lives. The blackface scandal has grown over the past 7 days to include national celebrities as well as government officials. It’s become a delicate subject and a practice that SNL has also participated in over the decades. Remember Fred Armisen as President Obama and Billy Crystal as Sammy Davis Jr. before that. Let’s see what they do with it tonight.
Other topics of national interest that may appear in sketches or on Weekend Update this evening include President Trump’s delayed State of The Union address to Congress, which is a great opportunity for cast member Melissa Villaseñor to grab a white pantsuit from wardrobe and break out one of her newer impressions, freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
The show tonight may also find inspiration from the New England Patriots winning another Super Bowl (or as the New York Post so cleverly dubbed it “Super Boring”) along with Tom Brady and Bill Belichick picking up their sixth NFL championship rings, and the nationwide panning of Maroon 5’s halftime show. There’s also Amazon chief Jeff Bezos’ allegations that he was being blackmailed by the National Enquirer because of some leaked dick pics which may or may not be available with Amazon Prime, plus there’s the upcoming Grammy Awards, the new Orange Vanilla flavored Coke, and a check of calendar tells us that tonight will be SNL‘s 2019 Valentine’s Day show. So expect some sketches and SNL – Digital Shorts dedicated to the emotion of love. In the name of St. Valentine, we’ll see if cast member Pete Davidson’s love life is brought up on Weekend Update (hopefully Kate Beckinsale has a sense of humor) or if it’s cast member Leslie Jones at the news desk once again loudly lamenting her many lost loves.
The promos for this week’s brand new SNL are available for you to watch below. In the first promo released by Saturday Night Live, Halsey is explaining how she’ll be both tonight’s host and musical guest. It’s a lot of work and sometimes, it makes her wish there were two Halseys, or three, or a half-dozen. ‘Sup Halseys? In the next set, Halsey is joined by cast member Aidy Bryant who’s been showing her wild side around Studio 8-H. We also find out that it’s not just Halsey pulling double-duty this week on Saturday Night Live. Find out what else Aidy will be working on for the show.
Tonight, it’s a all-new Saturday Night Live hosted by Halsey with musical guest Halsey at 11:30pm on NBC.
Next week on Saturday, February 16th, SNL is back and live again with host Don Cheadle and musical guest Gary Clark Jr.!