John Mulaney Knocks 'Saturday Night Live' Out Of The Park For His Second Hosting Stint

John Mulaney returned to host Saturday Night Live for a second time this weekend. He's a veteran of the late night sketch show, and he's one of the best stand-up comedians working today, so the excitement was high. Mulaney somehow exceeded expectations, thanks to former cast member Bill Hader popping up a couple times, but also because the line-up of sketches for this episode was incredible. Even the worst sketch of the episode wasn't terrible.

Let's run through the best and worst sketches of the John Mulaney hosted Saturday Night Live.

The Best

Bodega Bathroom – Take some songs from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory and mix it with the unsavory bathroom and artifacts you'll find at your average bodega, and you get this immediate classic sketch. It becomes a Broadway hodgepodge that includes references to Cats, RENT and The Little Shop of Horrors, but the Willy Wonka theme is what makes it so damn good. Pete Davidson can barely contain himself. Man, this sketch was so good.

What's That Name – Game shows are an easy sketch format for Saturday Night Live to pull off, and we've played this one before. But the writers mixed up the formula with this one by having special guest Bill Hader almost have a vendetta against John Mulaney as one of the contestants. They also spiced in a variety of other punchlines that made the premise feel not so rehashed, and the result was a truly hilarious bit of comedy.

Legal Shark Tank – Here's a fine example of SNL taking the headlines and doing something unique with them. In this legal edition of Shark Tank, people like Robert Kraft and Jussie Smollett see if they can get legal representation from Michael Avenatti (Pete Davidson), Jeanine Pirro (Cecily Strong), Alan Dershowitz (John Mulaney) or Rudy Giuliani (Kate McKinnon). Davidson's presence doesn't do much here, but the rest of pitch perfect impersonations with just the right amount of ridicule and silliness.

Michael Cohen Hearing – Finally, Saturday Night Live nailed some of their timely and relevant political satire. Even though the Michael Cohen hearing this past week was already quite the circus itself, SNL made it that much funnier by bringing in Bill Hader as increasingly foolish U.S. Representative Jim Jordan. The man basically dug his own grave and looked like a mad man during the hearing, and all the other representatives on hand take full advantage of that. Plus, Ben Stiller as Michael Cohen is gold.

The Average

Cha Cha Slide – Every single wedding has the Cha Cha Slide for some reason. This sketch is such a great mix of different gags. Doing a weird version of the Cha Cha Slide with rarely heard dance moves would have been funny by itself, but adding in the odd moments of catching up with people at a wedding was even funnier, and the ending even had a good joke to close on.

To Hate and Have Not – Kate McKinnon makes being unable to whistle so damn funny. And she only gets better as this sketch continues. This kind of sketch is tailor made for Mulaney's personality. He fits right in with an old timey movie perfectly. And while this sketch doesn't have much of an ending and feels a little messy, Kate McKinnon sells it so well that you can't help but like it.

Chad Horror Movie – It's odd that this is a recurring sketch, but the various iterations are so unique that they somehow make the character work pretty well. This version uses the Scream formula and let's Chad deal with it in quite the casual way, as expected. This is actually probably one of the better versions, but because this episode was so good in general, this one was only average.

The Worst

Toilet Death Ejector – For an episode that was all-around fantastic, this sketch didn't feel like it fit in. The slapstick stuff here is so over the top that it's pretty funny, but it's also too reliant on it. There's probably a better version of this sketch, but even so, it doesn't change the fact that it doesn't measure up to how great the rest of the sketches of the night were.

Weekend Update

Michael Che and Colin Jost felt extremely laid back during this entire segment. It's almost like they could tell this show was going really well and had some real swagger and confidence in their delivery. They were having fun, which isn't always evident in every episode. Obviously this can't always happen since every episode doesn't go as well as this one, but it's always nice to see it happen.

Smokery Farms – This was such a random Weekend Update segment, and it was made immediately more funny by the fact that this basket of raw meats was apparently extremely smelly, so much that it elicited quite the genuine reaction by Aidy Bryant and Kate McKinnon. The latter barely ever breaks, but the smell really made them giggly and on the verge of cracking throughout the sketch. Honestly, I wish this was a sketch outside Weekend Update, because I could see these characters recurring.

The Host

John Mulaney does stand-up for the monologue again. That's all you really need to know. It's always incredible when Mulaney is on stage doing stand-up, and this is no exception. I love this comedian, and this episode is one I'll remember for a long time.


Saturday Night Live - Bill HaderBill Hader – Sure, he may not be part of the cast anymore, and he wasn't even hosting, but his spin on Jim Jordan on that "What's That Name" hosting stint was raucously hilarious. It makes me wish Bill Hader was still part of the cast. Otherwise, Kenan Thompson deserves plenty of credit for his role throughout this episode, especially as the Bodega Cat.

The Final Word

This might be the best episode of Saturday Night Live this season now. Liev Schreiber previously hosted what felt like the best episode of season 44, but I think this takes the crown now. That's surprising since the last time John Mulaney hosted, it was funny, but it didn't quite live up to my expectations. But this episode was just incredible in every way, and the whole cast was having a good time.. Even the worst sketch wasn't downright terrible.