While Saturday Night Live is still in a pandemic shutdown, enjoy an SNL repeat tonight starring 6-time host, Scarlett Johansson!
Tonight was the night that SNL had planned on returning with a new live show hosted by John Krasinski. Unfortunately, thanks to the stupid Coronavirus, we’re not going to get to see John “The Kraz” Krasinski in sketches where he plays Jim from “The Office” or government agent Jack Ryan or that other guy from “The Quiet Place” and “The Quiet Place 2: The Quietening“.
However, if we need a Saturday Night Live repeat this week to entertain the country as it begins to go a little stir crazy from its social isolation, this is a good SNL rerun to air tonight. Tonight’s SNL encore originally aired on Saturday, December 14th, 2019. It was the return of Scarlett Johansson to the SNL stage. The “Avengers” star was already a member in good standing of the Saturday Night Live Five-Timers Club and this episode is her 6th time hosting the show.
This evening’s SNL rerun is good for an ailing nation, not just because Scar-Jo is a great host and more than capable of handling comedy, but because tonight’s show (with the exception of two sketches) is a holiday spectacular. Just about every sketch is Christmas related. And who couldn’t use some Christmas cheer during a worldwide pandemic?
One reason for the full-on Christmas show is because a week after this show originally aired on NBC, it was the Eddie Murphy homecoming SNL episode which was loaded with sketches revamping Murph’s Saturday Night Live characters from when he was on the show in the 80’s. So, the cast and writers made sure to get all their holiday material in a week earlier than normal on the Scarlett Johansson episode, so it would all get on the air.
When Scarlett Johansson returned to host Saturday Night Live for her 6th time in mid-December last year, she was promoting two big film endeavors. She had received a Golden Globe nomination for her movie “Marriage Story” which was in limited theater release and streaming on Netflix. Then, she also had her next cinematic chapter as the butt-kicking superhero, Black Widow from the “Avengers” franchise to promote. It’s the first time that Scar-Jo’s “Avengers” alter-ego gets to be the title character in a Marvel Universe film.
Sidenote: Scarlett Johansson’s film “Black Widow” was due to be released on Friday, May 1st of this year, but with the Coronavirus outbreak shutting down multiplexes across the country, that date has been postponed and no new release date has been scheduled as of yet. And now, back to discussing tonight’s SNL rerun.
Since this episode was the penultimate show before the SNL winter hiatus and aired 10 days before Christmas Eve 2019, many of the sketches and shorts were holiday themed and that included the SNL – Cold Open that night. The intro sketch begins with cast member Aidy Bryant as “Sam the Snowman” from the classic Christmas special, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer“. In this woke era of the 21st century, maybe it should be “Sam the Snowperson”. It’s Aidy playing another role traditionally portrayed by a guy or in this case, Burl Ives.
However, the Aidy Bryant portion of tonight’s SNL – Cold Open looks suspiciously like it was squeezed in just to make a politically-themed cold open sketch into a Christmas one. Of course it could be that it’s just fun to see Lil’ Baby Aidy in a giant snowman suit. The main part of this evening’s SNL opener has nothing to do with the holidays.
The sketch bounces from dinner scene to dinner scene, all with families sitting around the table discussing President Trump’s impeachment and his chances of re-election. It’s important to note (not really), that just the day before this SNL episode aired, the House Judiciary Committee voted to pass both articles of impeachment against President Donald J. (the “J” stands for Just Tryin’ to Get Some Dirt on the Bidens) Trump and this show was 3 days before President Quid Pro Joe would be soundly impeached by the entire House of Representatives.
As we drop in on these American homes, one family in the cold open is a liberal family in San Francisco, one is a conservative family in Charleston, South Carolina and the third is Black family in Atlanta who know exactly how this is all going to play out including the upcoming election and they are not going to sweat it. They’d much rather talk about “Bad Boys III” anyway.
As you can imagine, or you don’t have to if you saw this SNL the first time it aired, the liberal family is very anti-Trump and the conservative family is very pro-Trump and the Black family could give a damn as the sketch cuts from scene-to-scene. At the end, watch for cast member Kenan Thompson to get a punchline out of Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s candidacy and cast member Kate McKinnon’s latest political impression, Time Magazine’s Person of the Year, teen environmental superstar Greta Thunberg. Plus, it’s a blast any time Kate and Aidy share stage time.
Moving along to the host’s opening remarks, Scarlett Johansson’s 6th monologue kicking off Saturday Night Live is a high-tech one. It’s more of a sketch than a monologue and it uses the premise of her superhero movie mega-hit “Avengers: Infinity War“. In the film, a bitch of an evil Titan named Thanos makes half of all living things vanish from the universe. They all get “dusted”, meaning that they disintegrate into dust.
As half of the SNL cast gets dusted, Scarlett Johansson goes into “Avengers” mode and leaps into action. Unfortunately, she left her Black Widow costume in the car. This time however, it turns out that the threat isn’t Thanos. It’s one million times more dangerous. SNL SPOILER ALERT! It’s cast member Pete Davidson with some free time on his hands.
There’s a couple of jokes made at the expense of Pete, over all the time off he’s taken from this current Saturday Night Live season. These jokes may be part of the reason why Pete Davidson thinks the SNL cast and writers hate him. This includes the awkward way the monologue wraps up in a very anticlimactic fashion and keep an eye on when Pete goes to give Scarlett a hug and a friendly peck on the cheek and she pulls away disgusted. Was that in the script? And if so, why!? Because it made no sense for her to do that.
Bonuses from tonight’s monologue; Kenan Thompson’s Samuel L. Jackson / Nick Fury impression and getting to see our lovely host Scarlett Johansson interact on stage with her real-life fiancé, the equally lovely SNL co-head writer and Weekend Update co-anchorman, cast member Colin Jost. The two pull back the curtain on their relationship and give us Saturday Night Live gossip fans an SNL-PDA to cherish. And just wait till you see these two during the curtain call. Can’t keep their hands off each other!
The opening sketch following the monologue features a pair of mall elves performing for shopping families. The store elves are Scarlett Johansson as Dondra Dupree and Kenan Thompson as Wondrous Williams, two employees at the hair extensions kiosk at the mall and part-time singing elves and “entertainters.” Dondra & Wondrous rap about Santa trying to get his ample booty down the chimney, a sexually frustrated Mrs. Santa Claus needing to “get railed by elves,” and “ba-rump a bump bump”, doing cocaine at Christmastime.
The “Singing Elves” sketch is really two sketches in one. First, you get Dondra and Wondrous performing and then there’s a couple played by cast members Beck Bennett and Heidi Gardner watching the performance with their kids. The couple’s reaction to the “Singing Elves” is every bit as a bizarre as the elves themselves.
In this opening sketch, watch for Dondra and Wondrous to introduce featured cast member Bowen Yang as their songwriter, LaTony Garage who wishes a “Merry Christmas to the children” and explains his songwriting process. He writes at 5am while “skiing with Miss Connie. The snow that goes up. Thunderstand?? The snorty snow. I’m talking about Crocraine!” What an entrance!
The next sketch deals with the topic of holiday office parties in the #MeToo era. This bit has been done in the past on SNL and it’s back for another round. The premise is that the annual office party got out of control the night before and a female sales executive (host Scarlett Johansson) and the lovable, elderly front desk guy Charlie (Kenan Thompson) have both been fired for their inappropriate drunkenness and now, want to address the staff to apologize. While the employees are glad to see the female exec go for her crime of unprofessional comments about race and physical appearances, everyone is devastated that sweet old Charlie is out on the street even though his indiscretions are much more egregious than the woman’s lapses in judgment.
Another sketch that undoes a holiday classic is the “Hot Tub Christmas” sketch which features host Scarlett Johansson and cast member Cecily Strong as the Ghosts of Two Dead Strippers Past that haunt the hotel hot tub where they died one Christmas.
The two dead strippers sing about their tragic ending on December 25, 1973. Their death song is very reminiscent of the Carpenters’ “Merry Christmas, Darling.” Be sure to watch for a ghostly cameo by this show’s musical guest, former One Directioner, Niall Horan as Big Jim, the strip club owner. And like in every holiday movie where someone is visited by spirits, there’s also a lesson to be learned here in the hot tub.
The holiday themed comedy on this repeat SNL continues with a game show sketch. The game show is the Hallmark Channel’s “A Winter Boyfriend For Holiday Christmas.” It’s a match-making “Dating Game” style show from the people who make those sappy Hallmark romantic holiday TV movies. Host Scarlett Johansson plays the contestant who’s hoping to meet a guy even though she’s too busy with her career right now. As you’ll be able to tell, this game show covers every stereotype and TV trope that you’ll find in those hokey hetero-centric Hallmark sentimental movies.
The final two sketches of the night are ones that don’t have anything to do with Christmas. First there’s “Celebrity Sighting“. It’s a sketch about an oddly famous couple hoping not to get mobbed by their fans when they go to restaurant to eat. The couple, played by Scar-Jo and Bowen Yang seem fairly unremarkable at first until we realize they’re the couple drawn into the standard restaurant “Choking” poster which demonstrates how to do the Heimlich Maneuver. Best moment? The look on Kate McKinnon’s face as the fan who first recognizes the couple.
We get a callback to SNL – Season 42 for the final sketch of the night. Back in 2017 when Scarlett Johansson hosted Saturday Night Live, she played a scientist in a sketch about a company that had developed a pet translator which would reveal what your dog was thinking. The prototype test run had embarrassing results for Scarlett’s character. This evening, we’re back in the laboratory.
All the same players are back again as well with Scar-Jo, including Kyle Mooney and Mikey Day as the research team and cast members Alex Moffat and Cecily Strong returning as the skeptical company execs. Even Max the Pug is back as the lead scientist’s own pet dog. The results this time are just as disastrous especially when the conversation between the dog and the scientists turns political.
It must have been a very good audience when this Christmas SNL originally ran because we’re getting not 1, not 2, but 3 SNL – Digital Shorts in this episode. The first short is simply titled “Children’s Clothing Ad“. It’s a mock-up of a Macy’s holiday-wear TV commercial that is parodied to perfection with the SNL cast exactly matching the poses seen in most television clothing spots.
It takes a tantrum turn though when the children in the commercial start losing their shit from their hot, itchy, uncomfortable holiday sweaters, jackets and winter-wear they’re forced to put on this time of year. From “cozy corduroys that will pinch his little nuts” to “hard, shiny shoes that hurt” for girls. “Welcome to being a woman, Kiley.”
The next short is a Netflix parody spot spoofing the host Scarlett Johansson’s Academy Award nominated film “Marriage Story” co-starring Adam Driver. However, this movie is “A Conway Marriage Story” and it’s all about the tumultuous relationship between loyal Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway and her husband, attorney and Trump nemesis, George Conway. Beck Bennett plays George and Kate McKinnon brings back her spot-on Kellyanne impression.
The final SNL – Digital Short of the night is a music video starring Cecily Strong as a 1950’s era little girl singing “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus“. However, this version of the song has a slight twist especially when the young girl gets to the lyrics, “If Daddy had only seen Mommy kissing Santa Claus last night.” Turns out, Daddy DID see Mommy and Santa making out, and he was into it. Yep, Daddy’s a Christmas Cuck. Who knows what’s gonna happen when you meet Santa on Craig’s List!?
With articles of impeachment being approved just over 24 earlier, that’s the top story on tonight’s repeat edition of Weekend Update. Anchorman Colin Jost comments on Trump becoming the first President in history to be impeached while running for re-election, adding, “Because only Democrats could figure out a way to lose twice in the same year.”
Anchorman Michael Che also went after the Democrats telling them that it’s time to start cheating if they want Trump out of office. He mentioned Senator Kamala Harris dropping out of the presidential race because of a lack of campaign money. Che shouts, “Rob a bank! Do you all want this or not??”
Other than impeachment, the Weekend Update news team also covers stories such as Trump’s executive order classifying Judaism as both a nationality and a race, Trump attacking 16 year old environmentalist Greta Thunberg, a Scripps National Spelling Bee rule change, Harvey Weinstein’s $25 million settlement with his female accusers, Vanna White filling in the for the ailing Pat Sajak on “Wheel of Fortune,” IHOP’s new casual dining restaurants, penis-fish washing up on California beaches, and the overly uptight straight bitches known as the One Million Moms protest group complaining about a same-sex kiss on a Hallmark Channel movie, to which Michael Che perfectly sums it all up by saying, “Ladies relax. If your kid is watching the Hallmark Channel, he already gay as hell.”
For the second rerun in a row, we get a visit to the Weekend Update desk from Bowen Yang as Chen Biao, China’s Trade Representative to the U.S. Bowen didn’t play this stereotyped character two weeks in a row in real time, but it’s odd how the SNL reruns lined up this way. It’s like Lorne Michaels is trying to send the message that it’s not Chinese accents we have a problem with, it’s who’s doing the accent.
This edition of Weekend Update also gets a visit from the Disney+ character that has taken the both ours and the “Star Wars” galaxy by storm, Baby Yoda. Cast member Kyle Mooney plays the baby breakout star who starts out communicating in his trademark giggles and then begins talking in a much tougher street accent.
The star of Disney+’s “The Mandalorian” is touting his own success including the role being beneficial in scoring with the ladies and how he’s hanging with his Hollywood crew, Timothée Chalamet, Robert Pattinson and the two dudes from the Sonic commercials. Baby Yoda also addresses his haters including one in particular. “Baby Groot. Do me a favor. Keep my name outcha’ little tree mouth before I snap you like a twig!”
As for what to watch for during this edition of Update, there’s a story about surveyed Republicans making the bold claim that Trump is a better president than George Washington. Just watch how Michael Che spins this one. It’s comedy magic that leaves his co-anchor Colin Jost unable to continue with the news from laughing too hard.
The promos for tonight’s SNL rerun are all still available and we have them below for you to watch. Why not? Especially when you’re sitting at home in self-isolation just searching for anything to entertain yourself with. Enjoy these. The first promo is a Scarlett Johansson highlight reel featuring all the best moments that earned Scar-Jo a place in the Saturday Night Live Five-Timers Club.
In the next promo, the staff is getting Studio 8-H all ready for an SNL Christmas. Cast member Beck Bennett is in the holiday spirit too and really excited for “Sweater Weather”. That is until your evil host Scarlett Johansson gets into Beck’s head about how uncomfortable and really itchy his “stupid and terrible” sweater looks.
For the final promo, Scarlett Johansson is joined by musical guest Niall Horan and cast member Cecily Strong. This promo is all that Cecily wants for Christmas. Well, this promo and some pretty expensive stuff for her ski trip too. And that’s really all she needs.
Scarlett Johansson hosts a repeat episode of Saturday Night Live from last December with musical guest Niall Horan, tonight at 11:30pm et on NBC.
Saturday Night Live will remain dark until further notice with no new episodes during the Coronavirus Crisis.