SNL: Heidi Gardner, Kieran Culkin, Chris Redd (CREDIT: NBC/Screenshot)

I ran the New York City Marathon on Sunday, November 7, 2021, which made it a little difficult to post my review of the 11/6/21 SNL on Sunday as I normally do. Sorry, Kieran Culkin and Ed Sheeran! (They were the guests of this episode.) So I decided instead to write this review over the course of the week, at a rate of a few sketches per day. Anyway, maybe it was the post-marathon glow, but I really enjoyed this episode!

Justice with Judge Jeanine: The headline here is Pete Davidson’s Aaron Rodgers impression, but my attention is held more by James Austin Johnson’s Donald Trump impression. Not because it was super-duper, but because it featured a rundown of quick discussion topics a la ESPN’s discussion program Pardon the Interruption, which certainly wasn’t something I was expecting.

Kieran Culkin’s Monologue: This is just a prime example of the host using his monologue to introduce himself to us a little bit more than he’s already been introduced to us out in the wild. I knew that Kieran previously appeared on SNL 30 years when his older brother hosted, but I didn’t know what was going on in his head at that time, or what he thinks about it now. But now I do!

Spectrum Callback: Phone calls with customer service reps at telecommunications companies are notoriously difficult, so it’s perhaps a little surprising that they haven’t influenced SNL sketches more often. But maybe it’s a good thing that the show has played it cool, as this effort was so frenetic and nutty, and that can very possibly be chalked up to its rarity.

The Heist: Driving stick shift is nutty! I liked how everyone was trying to help Chris Redd’s character, even as they also all thought he was pathetic.

Dionne Warwick Talk Show: I think this was the funniest edition of the Dionne Warwick Talk Show yet! And that was even before the real Dionne Warwick showed up. And then it was even better!

Men’s Room: What a poetic and thoughtful scene! There are certain social solutions where we often just don’t know what to do, and encounters in a public restroom are way up there. Honestly, it’s inspiring to see these men’s anxieties played out so vulnerably and nakedly.

The Jockey: You’re probably wondering what I thought about this sports biopic/ska-punk mashup, and well it’s kind of an awesome story. I watched it … and loved it immediately! Then I watched it again … and again … and again! This is one of those SNL bits that I feel compelled to rewatch as often as possible, and in the spirit of November, I am very thankful for that.

Ed Sheeran, “Shivers”: I wonder, was this song inspired by the David Cronenberg film of the same name?

Weekend Update
The Jokes: I don’t think this was the most memorable joke-telling performance by Colin Jost and Michael Che that I’ve ever encountered, but I did write “harder than trigonometry” in my notes, so that’s a net positive.
Ice Cube: It makes more sense to replace Ice Cube with Michael B. Jordan rather than Terry Crews?
Goober the Clown: Maybe all touchy topics should henceforth be discussed by clowns.

Wake Up Rhode Island: Fun with silly local news Halloween costumes. (Also, how could it take until November for the first sub-40 day in Rhode Island?)

Ed Sheeran, “Overpass Graffiti,”: It must be too hot to wear a sweater on the SNL music stage!

Please Don’t Destroy: Calling Angie: The “Please Don’t Destroy” guys have quickly taken over as the SNL Filmmakers Du Jour – time moves pretty fast in 2021!

And well, you won’t have to wait a full week for my next review, as I’ll be publishing my musings on Jonathan Majors’ SNL debut and Taylor Swift’s SNL return on my usual Sunday schedule.