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Tag: Music + Comedy = Good Thing? (11-20 of 233)

Melissa McCarthy returns to 'SNL' tonight: Talk about it here!

The first time Melissa McCarthy hosted Saturday Night Live, she was just coming off the enormous success of 2011′s Bridesmaids. The second time she stopped by Studio 8H, she was promoting her then-upcoming Sandra Bullock buddy comedy The Heat. This time around, though, McCarthy has no immediate projects to plug, unless you count her continuing work on CBS’s Mike & Molly. (And really, who does? Memo to Chuck Lorre: Free Melissa!)

That means the show is bringing McCarthy back largely for one reason: Simply put, she’s really great at hosting SNL. In fact, according to you guys, she was the funniest woman who helmed SNL all of last year — and that season’s second-greatest host period, topped only by Justin Timberlake.

So, could this hat trick performance help McCarthy snag the title of Season 39′s Ms. Saturday Night? READ FULL STORY

Jonah Hill hosts 'Saturday Night Live' this weekend: Talk about it here!

No disrespect to Jonah Hill, but on some level, his upcoming SNL hat trick raises just one question: Hill is about to host Saturday Night Live for the third time. Yet his Wolf of Wall Street co-star Leonardo DiCaprio hasn’t hosted even once? Even worse, Leo’s never stopped by Studio 8H for so much as a cameo? This is so outrageous I’m starting to feel short of breath. Quick, somebody grab me a quaalude!

Ahhh, there we go. Now, what was I saying? Oh yes — Jonah Hill’s back on SNL this weekend, which means a few things. One, there’s a pretty good chance we’ll see the third recurrence of Adam Grossman, a.k.a. that 6-year-old kid who loves Benihana and talking like a Borscht Belt comedian. (Side note: Man, remember when Casey Wilson was on SNL? Side-side note: Man, 2008 Jonah Hill looked… different.)
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'Saturday Night Live' recap: Mazel tov, Drake (and Sasheer Zamata)!

Even after 38 and a half seasons, SNL still has the capacity to surprise. Yesterday, I assumed that 2014′s first episode would make some noise about new featured player Sasheer Zamata; given the show’s unusually public search for black female talent, fanfare or at least a formal introduction seemed likely.

But in the end, SNL decided to go a more matter-of-fact route: Zamata wasn’t set apart from the rest of the cast. Instead, she was simply and easily integrated into the show, appearing in no fewer than five sketches throughout the episode. And though Sasheer certainly got more screen time than the average featured player — blink and you’ll miss Brooks Wheelan and John Milhiser each week — she was never given the responsibility of carrying an entire sketch, which may have been too much for her very first show. All in all, I’m glad SNL defied my expectations and took a subtler approach; this seems like the best way to gradually end the conversation about Sasheer Zamata, Black Lady Comedian, and move toward a world where she’s just another part of the group.

Another reason SNL was smart not to make the night all about Sasheer (or its other new additions, SNL writers LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones): We got more time to spend with Drake. And Drake was really, really great. Especially in the night’s…

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'SNL' recap: Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake's Christmas bro-down

Now that’s what I call a Christmas show!

Saturday’s Jimberlake joint wasn’t perfect. It certainly wasn’t as consistently wonderful as Jimmy Fallon’s last Christmas episode, which set the standard for SNL holiday cheer two years ago. And it did contain one sketch offensively bad enough to almost ruin the whole night’s effect. Pound for pound, though, Fallon and his unofficial cohost Justin Timberlake did present one of this season’s best overall episodes — thanks largely to their unflagging energy and enthusiasm, which gave a jolt of joy to even the night’s less inspired bits. (We’re making fun of Paul Ryan? Still? Now?) Last week’s holiday-themed John Goodman episode was a letdown; this week’s holiday show felt like a pleasant corrective.

But interestingly enough, the night’s biggest triumph actually didn’t rely on Fallon and Timberlake’s chemistry at all. I’m talking, of course, about the episode’s…

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Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake rule 'Saturday Night Live' tonight: Talk about it here!

#JimmyFallon. #JustinTimberlake. #SaturdayNightLive. #BestEpisodeEver?

Let’s not take things too far. We should, however, be prepared for an SNL episode where everyone’s at the top of their game. Fallon (the episode’s host) and Timberlake (its nominal musical guest, though you know he’s basically co-hosting) tend to bring out the best in everyone around them whenever they stop by SNL individually. And with their powers combined, TimberFal can reach all kinds of heights.

Surprises, of course, will be in store. But given what we already know about this dynamic duo, it’s safe to make a few predictions about what to expect as well. Such as:

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Jimmy Fallon comes home for Christmas in 'Saturday Night Live' promos -- VIDEO

Jimmy Fallon: What a nice guy! So nice, in fact, that he’s totally cool spending most of his SNL promos ceding the spotlight to somebody who isn’t even present — Justin Timberlake, who will join his pal Fallon on this weekend’s show.

Nominally, Fallon is hosting the show, while Timberlake is just there to sing. But knowing these guys, it’s safe to guess that Timberlake is going to play a bigger role than most musical guests. And given Fallon’s improvised promos song — featuring an adorably serious Kate McKinnon, channeling Fred Armisen and Kristen Wiig’s Garth and Kat — perhaps we can expect the future Tonight Show host to crash SNL‘s musical stage as well.

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Lady Gaga takes over 'Saturday Night Live' tonight: Talk about it here!

Rah rah ah ah ah, roma roh mah mah, Gaga oo la la — who’s excited for SNL tonight?

By inviting Lady Gaga to serve as host and musical guest just six weeks after Miley Cyrus did the same, Saturday Night Live inadvertently invites a comparison to last season — which saw Justin Timberlake taking the show’s reigns four weeks after Justin Bieber performed double-duty. The analogy isn’t perfect, of course: Bieber had never hosted the show before, though Cyrus had. And while Timberlake is an old hosting pro, Gaga’s previous appearances were nominally as musical guest only — though she has performed in a handful of sketches over the years.

But Bieber is to Timberlake as Cyrus is to Gaga in that the first party in each equation is a younger, provocative, multitalented upstart trying to retread ground that’s already been paved by the elder party. When Timberlake hosted SNL so soon after Bieber had, JT’s triumphant outing stood in sharp contrast to the other Justin’s — which was a mixed bag at best and an exercise in smugness at worst.

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Kerry Washington hosts 'Saturday Night Live' tonight -- talk about it here!

Kerry Washington is poised, intelligent, talented, stylish, and, of course, beautiful. But is she funny?

I want the answer to be “yes.” I hope the answer will be “yes.” But considering that the Scandal star’s last major comedy credit is a series of 1996 PBS “edutainment” shorts called Standard Deviants, one can be forgiven for having doubts. (Okay, she was also the other woman in Chris Rock’s I Think I Love My Wife — but the role wasn’t particularly funny, and also, the movie wasn’t particularly good.)

Of course, a lack of comedic experience doesn’t necessarily mean an actor has no aptitude for comedy. Before they became SNL favorites, Christopher Walken and Jon Hamm were known primarily as dramatic actors. After their first turns as host, though, both proved that they’ve got serious comedic chops as well. (Christoph Waltz also sort of belongs in this category, though his Oscar-winning turn in Inglourious Basterds was funny in a very dark sort of way.)

Could Kerry join the exclusive ranks of those unexpectedly great hosts — or will she turn in a performance more along the lines of unsuccessful Serious Actor hosts like January Jones or Daniel Craig?

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Edward Norton hosts 'Saturday Night Live' tonight: Talk about it here!

We could all use a little more Edward Norton in our lives.

Though the Fight Club star has had a few particularly zeitgeisty moments (see 1996, which brought us Norton’s Primal Fear/Larry Flynt/Everyone Says I Love You trifecta, or 2002, when he had big roles in four movies… one of which, granted, was Death to Smoochy), he generally keeps a pretty low profile by appearing in just a few carefully chosen films each year. This, plus Norton’s closely guarded personal life, mean that he’s sort of impossible to get sick of — and makes his first time hosting SNL something really worth looking forward to.

Since starring in both The Incredible Hulk and Pride and Glory in 2008, Norton has headlined only one widely distributed, big-budget studio project — last year’s The Bourne Legacy. Otherwise, he’s spent the last five years doing one of two things: making smaller indie movies and filming a series of comedic cameos for the likes of Modern Family, The Invention of Lying, The Dictator,  and The Simpsons. So while he won fame as a dramatic actor, Norton’s clearly a funny guy — and if his occasional broad turns are any indication, he’ll fit in perfectly with SNL‘s comic sensibility. See also: This Lonely Island music video from last spring, in which Norton happily weds blushing groom Jorma Taccone.
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Bruce Willis hosts 'Saturday Night Live' tonight: Talk about it here!

Don’t be alarmed if this week’s episode of SNL already feels like it’s going to be a bit of a letdown. The show’s 39th season premiere boasted six brand-new cast members, a new Weekend Update anchor, and Tina Fey. Last week’s Mileypalooza carried with it a feeling that anything was possible — and the football game that delayed the cold open for 27 minutes only stoked our anticipation.

Tonight’s episode, by comparison, seems much less exciting. The host isn’t a seasoned vet known for bringing out the best in SNL‘s cast and crew or an unpredictable pop wild child. Instead, it’s Bruce Willis. Don’t get me wrong — I like Bruce Willis! But given his sleepy presence in this week’s promos, I have a feeling that John McClane won’t exactly bring a high amount of energy to Studio 8H this week. In fact, I’ve got a sneaky premonition that tonight’s show is going to be a lot like the one Robert De Niro hosted back in 2010 — an uneven affair built around a stony-faced straight man. I can almost guarantee we’ll see at least one sketch starring Willis as Movie Star Bruce Willis, and another where he’s dressed in a skirt.

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