Is Justin Timberlake already a 'Saturday Night Live' all-timer?


Image Credit: Dana Edelson

Justin Timberlake is not yet a Five-Timer when it comes to hosting Saturday Night Live (he’s hosted just three times), but he’s already established himself as one of the show’s best all-time guests since his first solo gig in 2003. So you can imagine the excitement that percolated when a tweet from SNL (that was quickly removed) indicated that Timberlake would host this May, sometime after Tina Fey’s May 7 performance.

So where does Timberlake currently rank in the pantheon of SNL hosts? He’s certainly one of the most versatile, killing in digital shorts (“D— in a Box“), dance numbers (“Single Ladies”), skits (Barry Gibb), and Weekend Update. (He also sings, from time to time.) At this point, he can pretty much do the entire show in two minutes or less.

Is he better than Hanks already? Is he more watchable than Walken? In he in the same class as Baldwin? Vote below for your favorite frequent guest?

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Comments (36 total) Add your comment
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  • Zach

    Hanks is still the best folowed by Baldwin, Walken and Mr. Steve Martin. John Goodman had a few good turns in the 90s, too!

  • whatevs

    Why is Jon Hamm on the list?

    • Chris

      I actually voted for Jon Hamm…I’ve liked all of his episodes.

      • Laurie

        Jon Hamm’s John Ham.

  • Aaron

    You are SO wrong for leaving Steve Martin out of this poll…and quite possibly a criminal.

    • Birv

      Agreed!!! Though has he been on recently?

    • shawshank

      Yup. Why is Steve Martin not on this list? Tied for most hosting gigs. Like twice as many as Hamm and Timberlake combined.

  • rey

    steve martin is the all time greatest. no other host has been mistakenly thought to have been a cast member.

    • RK

      And Paul Simon and anyone else in the 5-timer club. Great opening.

    • Laurie

      I thought he was in the seventes and then came back as a host. You learn something new every day!

  • Dude

    STEVE MARTIN! Update the freaking poll. Such a cheat!

  • Daily

    I don’t understand the appeal of this guy. I was certain that he would’ve grown on me now but I still don’t get it.

    • UGH

      People are easily entertained by mediocrity.

    • Kalie

      I agree. I don’t get it. I find him nasally and annoying. Yes, “D**k in a Box” was funny, but he didn’t come up with that or any of the other funny skits he was in. The Gibb brothers skits weren’t even that funny. Jimmy Fallon was much better in them and the two of them would always crack up during the skit.

    • Karate Pants

      Fortunately, most people DO still appreciate his talent.
      Alec Baldwin, Justin Timberlake, Tom Hanks, and Jon Hamm, in that order.
      I’m tired of Steve Martin, Christopher Walken, and Zach Galifanakis (yeah, why IS he listed?). Seriously. I could NOT get excited about the prospect of any of them hosting again (ever).

  • Dave

    My favorites are Christopher Walken, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin. Justin Timberlake is good, but he doesn’t come close to those 3.

  • Adele

    Alec Baldwin is the best, by far, but Steve Martin, who should have been on this list, is great too. Hanks and Timberlake are awesome. Zack G? John Hamm? Really? REALLY?

    • Erin

      You obviously didn’t see Zach and Bill Hader’s awesomely funny Pageant Talk.



  • Dave

    Why is Zach Galifianakis a choice? He has hosted, what, two times? And neither appearance was riotously funny. They were merely decent episodes that seemed better than they actually were because they were contained in wholly underwhelming seasons of SNL.

  • KC

    When is EW going to have a poll about deciding whether or not SNL should go off the air?
    That’s something that should’ve happened a decade ago.

    • ama


  • Handwasher

    JT makes it on the Barry Gibb Talk Show alone. Add in Bleep in a Box and the underrated Homelessville and it’s not even close.

    • Dan

      I can’t believe Steve Martin isn’t on the list, it is almost sacreligious. Baldwin, Walken, and Hanks definitely make the list. Hamm is great but hasn’t been on enough, while I think I give Justin the distincion of an all-timer already. But Galifianakis? I think the writer of this article went a little bit fan-boy on us, he wouldn’t make the top 100 hosts. Frequent usually implies more than 2 times, and I think his schtick is getting old, his character is more annoying than funny anymore.

    • Dave

      The Barry Gibb talk show skits are great because of Jimmy Fallon, not because of JT.

  • Jackie

    I love Justin Timberlake’s “Immigrant’s Tale” bit (hee hee, Cornelius Timberlake…).

  • Jacob

    I agree. I voted for Alec, but if Steve Martin had been on there, I’d have gone with him.

  • orville

    I love me some Timberlake, but I agree with the rest of the posters. How could you not have Steve Martin on the list. His rivalry with Alec Baldwin over who has hosted the most times is legendary in the history of the show. And he started his hosting run back in the 70s.

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