In hindsight, fans were bound to be disappointed. With Kristen Wiig’s eagerly anticipated return to SNL– after just a year away – many viewers were torn between wanting to see the best of her old characters and wanting to watch her expand. Unfortunately, last night we got neither. An eager Wiig brought the energy, and, especially alongside her friend Maya Rudolph, seemed to be having a great time visiting her old stomping ground, but for much of the show that enthusiasm — even during the return of characters like Dooneese — didn’t transfer to viewers at home.
The episode started with a cold opener featuring CSPAN coverage of the Benghazi hearings, with the central premise that many felt these were a shameless ratings grab as opposed to an actual search for truth. The decision to have ratings-gold Jodi Arias (a spot-on Nasim Pedrad) and Ariel Castro (Bobby Moynihan) “testify” was a great way to bring the three newsworthy stories of the week together. The best part was that unlike many a decent SNL sketch, it didn’t go on too long, allowing viewers quick access to Wiig. Her monologue could have been many things: A retread of old characters, a joke-y round up of what she’s been up to this year. Instead, we got an “I’m So Excited” parody with lyrics like, “Even though I’ve been away awhile now/ I still know camera one from camera two,” as Wiig paraded around the studio and realized that maybe she didn’t remember things quite as well as she’d hoped. The highlight was special guest Maya Rudolph, who stole both moments she was in: First, Wiig busted her making out with Jonah Hill (also cameoing), and then at the end of the number, the visibly pregnant star got her dance moves on alongside Wiig. Someone Gif that, stat. (Unfortunately, the monologue –which also featured a Gilly sighting — isn’t yet available online.) READ FULL STORY