SNL Review November 18, 2017: Chance the Rapper/Eminem

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CREDIT: Samantha Lichtenstein/NBC

This post was originally published on News Cult in November 2017.

News Cult Entertainment Editor Jeffrey Malone watches every new episode of Saturday Night Live and then organizes the sketches into the following categories: “Love It” (potentially Best of the Season-worthy), “Keep It” (perfectly adequate), or “Leave It” (in need of a rewrite, to say the least). Then he concludes with assessments of the host and musical guest.

Love It

The Mueller Files – You can take the Update guests out from behind the desk, but you can’t take the desk out of the Update guests. But sometimes that transition is a good thing. A new context can be enlightening. And so we have the Trump sons off on their own adventure, free from the confines of the middle of the show. And the result might be just be SNL’s most confident political satire of this era.

Pete Davidson mercilessly skewers his native Staten Island and the borough’s golden boy Colin Jost in one of his best Update appearances.

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SNL Recap 11/2/13 Kerry Washington/Eminem

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But who will play Miley?

Oval Office
Good on SNL for addressing this issue and being essentially clever about it, but it was kind of a catch-22 if the show was going to be the one addressing it.  So Al Sharpton’s assurance that nothing was learned was the only way to end it. B+

Kerry Washington’s Monologue
I didn’t even blink when Bobby called Kerry “Olivia.”  Predictable.  Amusing enough. B-

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SNL Recap December 18, 2010: Jeff Bridges/Eminem and Lil’ Wayne

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Christmas Eve in Washington, D.C.
Well, there you go. Sticking with the political angle for the opening, but actually doing something out of the ordinary with it. It is clear that the writers have plenty of material on Obama, Hilary, Rahm, Pelosi, and Biden, but the focus has lately been getting fuzzy when they try to make a sketch around it. The solution, apparently: keep it simple. B+

Jeff Bridges’ Monologue
It was a treat to see Cookie Monster appear, though I imagine folks who weren’t familiar with his campaign to host found it only about half as amusing as those who were familiar found it to be. It was beautiful that Jeff introduced him as his buddy who’s always wanted to be on the show. The two of them singing “Silver Bells” wasn’t particularly funny, but it was surreal (as with much of what is actually on Sesame Street). Who else was thinking of the time Isaac Asimov and Crystal Gayle sang the same? By the way, I think Jeff broke the record for longest time between two successive hosting appearances, a title previously held by, I believe, Drew Barrymore.  (Update: It turns out that Sigourney Weaver broke the record for longest gap when she hosted this past January, and the previous record-holder had been Madeline Kahn.  So, as far as I can surmise, the order for longest gaps goes: 1. Jeff Bridges [27 years], 2. Sigourney Weaver [24 years], 3. Madeline Kahn [18 years], 4. Drew Barrymore [17 years].) B+

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