If you happened to tune in to SNL after Jonah Hill’s monologue, you probably thought it was an uneven mix of sketches with a laugh here and there. If you viewed the show in its entirety like I did, your ride started off with a BANG and slowly lost steam as the episode went along, but not without hitting a few other highs (and lows) along the way. Hill was returning for his third time in the host’s seat (or the Benihana seat), a strong addition to his Actor’s Stat Card, which also now reads, “two-time Academy Award nominee.” The host could hardly mention as much in his monologue before the anticipation started to build: It really seems like they’re building up to a Leo cameo right now. But there’s no way he’ll stop by, right? Are they…? Is he…? And then, there he was in all of his bronzed boyish charm, Leonardo DiCaprio. I gasped. READ FULL STORY
Tag: Saturday Night Live (21-30 of 611)
This week has all the necessary pop-culture ingredients: A great book, a great movie, an awards show, and countless television musts. Get ready to set your DVRs, hit up your local bookstore, and cheer on your favorite performances, because we’ve outlined the perfect way for you to say goodbye to January.
READ FULL STORY
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.)
READ FULL STORY
Saturday Night Live‘s “newest addition” isn’t actually a new addition at all. Colin Jost, named today as Seth Meyers’ imminent Weekend Update successor, has been writing for the sketch show since 2005 (shortly after he graduated from Harvard; underachiever) and was named its co-head writer in 2012. True, he’s only appeared on the show a handful of times — in just two sketches, according to IMDB — but that doesn’t mean Jost lacks performing experience: He’s also a seasoned standup comedian who has appeared on stages around the country and on programs including Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and John Oliver’s New York Stand-Up Show.
Want to know more? Of course you do!
This weekend marks Jonah Hill’s third time hosting SNL — not exactly a milestone worthy of its own lengthy, star-studded sketch, but still something worth noting. (Back when Superbad was released, who’d have thunk Michael Cera would end up with a regular gig on indie comedy staples like Childrens Hospital and Burning Love — while Hill would be the one hosting SNL once every few years and winning Oscar noms in his spare time?)
Hill’s new SNL promos do just that, making much out of his three-peat and, interestingly enough, mentioning the whole Best Supporting Actor thing just once. Maybe they’re saving all their best “two-time Academy Award nominee Jonah Hill” material for Saturday?
Kicking off Saturday Night Live‘s 2014 season was Drake, the one-time Canadian teen soap star who now spends his days singing and rapping with the best in the business. And as longtime SNL fans know, musical hosts can be tricky. Luckily for the show, Drake seemed to have picked up some comedic talent in all his years in Hollywood. In her recap, Hillary Busis was even tempted to give Drake the award for Cast MVP by the end of the night, noting how “he played a main role in every single sketch tonight … and was so charming that I’m already counting down the days until he comes back for a second round.”
But the question remains: Was Drake funny enough to go up against the best hosts this season’s had to offer? Or perhaps the better question is: Was Drake funny enough to go up against Jimmy Fallon? The late-night host dominated our last poll with 60 percent of the vote, followed by Josh Hutcherson, who continues to garner support with 32 percent of the vote. The bottom three all earned less than 5 percent of the vote, with Kerry Washington in third, and Paul Rudd in fourth, thereby knocking John Goodman out of the competition (by only .31 percent).
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…
Man, where do we even begin?
This is a pretty big night for SNL. Let us count the ways: It’s the first show of 2014. The first show starring Drake as both host and musical guest, as well as Drake’s first major acting credit since Degrassi (unless you count his voice work in 2012′s Ice Age: Continental Drift). And, perhaps most importantly, it’s also the first show that will feature the work of SNL‘s much-publicized new talent — writers Leslie Jones and LaKendra Tookes, and featured player Sasheer Zamata.
No disrespect to Drake (or Ben Affleck), but that last item is what most people are buzzing about going into tonight’s episode. (Sorry, Aubrey — don’t cry.) SNL will obviously have to address its hunt for black female talent at some point during the evening, most likely during the cold open or the monologue. (What are the odds that Kerry Washington and/or Al Sharpton show up again to comment on the matter?) No matter what happens after that, talk of Jones, Tookes, Zamata, and however the show handles their first week on the job will definitely dominate the conversation about SNL tomorrow.
I’m hoping, though, that even in the midst of all this, Drake himself will get a few moments to shine. After all, he did some pretty great stuff the last time he stopped by the show:
Do Drake’s newly released ‘Saturday Night Live’ promos poke fun at Degrassi, the Canadian teen soap that starred Drake (then known as Aubrey Graham) for eight years?
Did Jimmy break up with Ashley after she got high on ecstasy and made out with Sean at the end of the school year, prompting her to reinvent herself for Grade 9 as an artsy goth chick with a pixie cut? (The answer to this question, like the previous one, is “yes.”)
Drake, of course, is more than a former teen star; he’s also an accomplished rapper, and an able straight man for the antics of promo costars Bobby Moynihan and Jay Pharoah. But it’s in the clip’s brief, glorious Degrassi segment that he truly shines as a funnyman; let’s hope it’s only a taste of what’s to come on SNL this weekend. At least cross your finger for more material like this and less material like Moynihan and Pharoah talking about beats.
Bobby Moynihan joins En Vogue and names the moment he became a man in our Pop Culture Personality Test -- VIDEO
You can get a double dose of Bobby Moynihan this week with the Jan. 18 return of Saturday Night Live (host and musical guest Drake) and Monday night’s premiere of Chozen, the new animated FX comedy in which he voices the titular gay white ex-con rapper. Yes, you read that right. “As you know, FX is fearless,” Moynihan says. “Every other line on the show is pretty crazy. Chozen does a lot of crazy things. I’m gonna go with, like, the least crazy, actually: There’s a scene where he’s smoking a joint and finds a hot dog on the floor, takes a drag, eats the hot dog, and then exhales. I just wish I could do that in real life. I wish I had that talent. And again, that’s the least crazy thing he’s done.”
Moynihan felt comfortable when he got the audition because the character’s voice reminded him of Mark Payne, the Pizzeria Uno employee he’s played on SNL and at the Upright Citizens Brigade. Though he doesn’t perform Chozen’s raps in the show (that’s creator Grant Dekernion), Moynihan dreams of the day when he puts out his own rap album. “In my mind, not in real life,” he says. “My rap name will be Optimus Rhymes. Or the Notorious B.o.B.”
For more pop culture revelations, watch the always entertaining Moynihan take the EW Pop Culture Personality Test below. READ FULL STORY
- 'Bachelorette': It's Andi Dorfman
- Diddy offers $200M for Fuse: Report
- '12 Years a Slave': Post-Oscar $$ bump
- Justin Bieber: Surprise SXSW performance
- Lindsay Lohan: Modest ratings for OWN
- 'Tom & Jerry,' 'Scooby-Doo': New 'toons
- 'Pretty Little Liars': Summer return on...
- Elisabeth Moss: Shirtless/revealing talk