Adam Driver - Saturday Night Live

Weekend Update

Michael Che’s rant on the Oscars was a nice little aside, but it feels like it could have used the touch of a “Really?!?” segment with Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler. The quick Staten Island Summer joke with a cut to Colin Jost was really funny, but this edition of Weekend Update seemed like a step back from the chemistry that Che and Jost were showing in the first part of the season. Maybe they just needed a warm-up to get back into it for 2016.

Pete Davidson On Gun Control – It’s been awhile since Pete Davidson got to do one of his Weekend Update segments, and because of that, this one seemed to work pretty well. It also helped that a lot of what Davidson said felt genuine, especially when referencing his own mental health concerns. I just hope they don’t go back to relying on Davidson and Leslie Jones for these bits every week.

Laura Parsons Returns – On paper, I feel like this character shouldn’t work as well as she does, but Vanessa Bayer sells the hell out of it, making dark and depressing headlines sound positively hilarious in that faux child voice of hers. If they keep bringing Laura Parsons back every now and then, that wouldn’t be the worst thing.

The Host

If you didn’t like Adam Driver enough already from being the most likeable character on Girls (which still isn’t saying much) or his praiseworthy turn as Kylo Ren in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, this episode of SNL should have fixed that. Driver didn’t feel nervous at all in his hosting debut, and he fit in perfectly with the cast. His comedic timing in the Star Wars sketch was magnificent and his faux bad acting in the porn doctor sketch was almost as good as Kyle Mooney’s from the first iteration.  This makes me want to see him do more comedies in the near future when he’s not busy with Star Wars.

The MVP

Adam Driver - Saturday Night Live - Vanessa Bayer

Vanessa Bayer – Between Laura Parsons and her crazy turn in the Golden Globes sketch, I just loved Vanessa Bayer this episode. Bobby Moynihan was a close second if only just for all his Star Wars comedy gold (especially his “Matt sucks” line in the Undercover Boss sketch), but Bayer had me laughing really had during Weekend Update and her pairing with Driver for the Globes sketch was wonderful. Bayer might be the most underrated cast member on the show, so I like when she has a good episode like this.

The Final Word

This wasn’t an amazing episode, but the best sketches really brought the laughs. I could see a couple of them turning out to be some of the best of the year, but we’ve got quite a few episodes left in this 41st season. Adam Driver didn’t disappoint with his hosting debut, but I wish the writers gave him a little more to do on the character side of things. It would be nice to see him really cut loose and be even sillier the next time he hosts.

We’ll be back next weekend after Ronda Rousey hosts on January 23rd.

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