Posted on Sunday, November 20th, 2016 by Ethan Anderton
Following last week’s episode of Saturday Night Live hosted by Dave Chappelle wasn’t going to be an easy task. It was easily the best episode of the season so far, but Lorne Michaels was smart enough to follow it up with someone SNL fans would be happy to see back on the mainstage of Studio 8H as host. Former SNL cast member Kristen Wiig returned as host for a second time, and since this was the Thanksgiving episode, there were a few surprise guest stars who stopped by to have some fun too. The result was a consistently funny episode, even if it wasn’t as raucously hilarious as last weekend’s episode. So let’s get down to it.
We recap the best and worst sketches from the Kristen Wiig hosted Saturday Night Live after the jump.
Target Commercial – Without any dialogue in this sketch, Cecily Strong shows that she’s one of the great secret weapons of SNL. Her facial expressions say volumes to go along with the contrasting cheery voiceover from the Target commercial narrator. This is something that a lot of people are going to feel when they go home for Thanksgiving this weekend, and that’s true even if you take out the reference to the election. Sometimes being home just has you wanting to sit in a big empty parking lot or laying on the floor of the toy section in a store.
The Bubble – The President elect is still ranting and raving on Twitter, and last night he again complained about Saturday Night Live mocking him, saying the episode was one-sided after watching “parts” of the show. So either he missed this sketch (and another one later in the night), or he just doesn’t get it. The Bubble is just as much a sketch mocking how scary Trump’s presidency as it is about how liberals are reacting to it by staying inside their bubble and echo chamber. It’s smart satire, and I loved it.
Thanksgiving Parade – The idea for this sketch is funny in itself, but the way it was executed on SNL is even more impressive. Interestingly enough, if you take a look at behind the scenes photos from this sketch, that’s not a green screen behind the window, but rather a large video wall projecting what’s going on elsewhere in the studio with the actors as Thankgiving day parade balloons in front of a green screen. I would love to see a horror short with this concept, and for the record, Bobby Moynihan’s clown in this looks scarier than the new IT.
Anderson Cooper 360 – While watching this sketch, I felt like we were seeing an improv game being played out on SNL. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but despite the increased insanity from each pundit, the gag was starting to get old. But then that sweet, sweet payoff came at the end. For those who haven’t seen the sketch yet, I’m not even going to spoil it, but just stick around until the end. Oh, and for those keeping track, this was another sketch apparently ignored by Donald Trump that pokes fun at the media, their sensationalizing of headlines, their repetitive nature, and lack of any real impact.