Awkwafina Hosted Saturday Night Live

The Average

Emergency Alert – Last week brought the first Presidential Alert to all our phones, and SNL went for the easy joke that plenty of Twitter users and late night comedians already made. They spiced it up a little bit with the reactions of people getting the messages, not to mention turning it into a commercial for Cricket wireless. It brought some solid laughs, but it could have been better.

The Baby Shower – Awkwafina is what makes this sketch works so well. The way she walks around the living room holding that piece of pizza is such a great physical gag, especially when she starts tearing down the banner and messing with the balloons. Plus, her unwavering confidence and deadpan delivery sweetens the deal. Unfortunately, the rest of the sketch leaves something to be desired, and I think this character could have been used better.

So You’re Willing to Date a Magician – Just the title of this faux game show is funny on its own, and if this would have played out with less technical hiccups and poorly timed breaks in character, it might have landed a little more firmly. Unfortunately, it kept tripping over itself, and not even Kyle Mooney and Kenan Thompson could save it with the jokes they landed.

The Worst

Late Night Battle – It’s always frustrating when such a great sketch idea is wasted so carelessly. In this case, the idea of a dance battle crew showing off their skills to the tunes of game shows, like the Price is Right theme and the Final Jeopardy song cue is hilarious on its own. But the problem is the dances performed to these songs were orchestrated with such lazy coordination and choreography that the gag doesn’t work anywhere nearly as well as it should. Sure, it’s hard to learned choreographed dances in the span of a week, but that’s what would have made this sketch work.

Cleopatra – Bringing modern sensibilities to the distant past is a classic comedy premise, and while it had potential here, the writing just wasn’t strong enough for me to be entertained by it. Awkwafina does fine in her role as the lead stylish, but there’s just not much funny happening here.

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