There was a lot of potential from the get-go for Tiffany Haddish to open Saturday Night Live with a flourish. After all, the Girls Trip star is well-versed in standup comedy (she’s the first black female comedian to host) and this season has shown to be rather great when it comes to memorable standup performances during the monologue.
Tonight, Haddish opened the show by reminding everyone of her aforementioned movie, talked about her net worth not being what it’s reported to be online, her take on Donald Trump’s wig, and also the recent headlines when it comes to sexual harassment and assault. She also talked about Kevin Hart dissing her and how she loves to wear the same outfit on more than one occasion.
We loved this monologue, especially because Haddish’s voice is one we don’t often hear on SNL. She was relatable, over-the-top, but also consistently funny — especially when she kept bringing everything back to her Alexander McQueen dress. (She even turned up in it later in the show.)
Want more from this week’s show? CarterMatt’s review of the sketches is here for you below.
Cold Open – We have a full story about it over here, but it was a moderately-funny introduction to the show’s version of Roy Moore. Hopefully he withdraws his candidacy and we never see him again on the show.
Gaming Tournament – This was pretty incredible. Basically, the premise here was that Kenan Thompson’s character accidentally selected “Boo Boo Jeffries” (Haddish), a character interested in doing everything other than fighting. This character was stupendous and we’re very disappointed that we’re probably not going to see her again. A great spoof of both Mortal Kombat and also eSports.
Lion King auditions – The best part of this was Kenan’s LL Cool J, not really saying anything and just standing there. Still, there were many great moments in here, whether it the very-random Eminem impression from Pete Davidson or the almost spot-on impersonation of Kristen Schaal. Also, it was really funny that they threw John Oliver in there as Zazu given that he actually has the part in the movie.
DMC commercial – This was some really good shade thrown in the Democrats’ direction, namely in how that they’re riding high even though they’ve only won two states and haven’t added any fresh faces. This got progressively funnier as it went along for two reasons: Larry David showing back up as Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton (McKinnon) claiming that she’s going to keep running.
Revenge plot – The entire meta sketch about Beck Bennett and Colin Jost’s plan to win back Kyle Mooney and Leslie Jones was great … or at least it was for the vast majority of it. The final minutes of it were a clear miss since there was no payoff to the plot other than “let’s watch random people, including Lorne Michaels,” punch Kyle in the face.
Weekend Update – The real scene-stealer tonight was Cecily Strong as Claire from HR, an exhausted character who has spent all week trying to put out one fire after another. For anyone out there wondering whether or not SNL would go after Louis CK, a former host many times over, they certainly did — and many of the other people accused of misconduct in the process
The jokes tonight for Colin Jost and Michael Che were especially biting, but other than the one about OJ Simpson it was hard to remember them thanks to what followed: Kenan’s ridiculous Lavar Ball impersonation. It’s basically the same thing as his David Ortiz, just without the accent.
The Last Black Unicorn – The first clear miss of the night, as Haddish played a magical unicorn who handed down one piece of bad news after another to Aidy Bryant’s character. It felt almost like the moment the backing music stop, so did the sketch.
Get Woke with Tamika – This was a very strange sketch that was a miss yet again. The audience in the room seemed to hate it, especially the twist that Tamika’s show was apparently sponsored by Breitbart. We just don’t understand what the premise here was supposed to be.
Dolphin documentary – This pre-taped sketch is actually based on a real documentary about a non-sexual relationship involving a dolphin. Of course, SNL decided to GO THERE with this and produce one of the strangest sketches of the entire season about two trainers who formed a habit of sexually satisfying a dolphin. It was really more disturbing than it was funny — also, we really like dolphins so there was something strange about seeing one presented in such a sex-crazed manner.
Whiskers R We – This made up for the past few sketches for so many reasons, including a pretty fantastic ad-lib from Haddish when one of the cats tried to escape. This was a really wacky edition of the sketch given that the cats were not down for the show and tell. The biggest problem with it was actually the show trying to stick with the premise of the host’s character having a thing for McKinnon’s. There just wasn’t that sort of chemistry here.
While the second half of the show was a letdown, the first half was so funny that we’re probably still going to go ahead and say that this was the best edition of SNL this season.
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