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How did Melissa McCarthy Do Hosting the Latest SNL?

Would Saturday Night Live be more exciting than the Superbowl?

Would Saturday Night Live be more exciting than the Superbowl?

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This weekend featured the third new edition of Saturday Night Live in a row.  The latest outing was hosted by Melissa McCarthy (hosting for the 3rd time) with Musical Guest, Imagine Dragons.  The show was also the final episode featuring Seth Meyers as host of Weekend Update and head writer.  Rob Cesternino and Rich Tackenberg (@richtack) recap everything that was working and not working in the episode.

Plus, we have the debut of our Musical Guest correspondent, James Keast (@ExclaimEditor), to discuss the musical stylings of Imagine Dragons.

What Worked

  • Some Dumb Little Thing from CVS Valentine’s Day commercial
  • The pre-taped piece about February being Black History Month
  • The Women’s Group sketch according to Rich
  • The Guess That Phrase sketch according to Rob
  • The return of Stefan, Amy Poehler and Andy Samberg to Weekend Update to say goodbye to Seth Meyers

What Didn’t Work

  • The cold open featuring the stars of Broadway doing the Superbowl halftime show
  • The reprise of the Sheila Kelly character on the Delaware One news
  • The Living Exhibit at the art museum
  • The Girlfriends Talk Show
  • The Summer of Diane
  • Kyle Mooney’s latest outing talking to people at the Super Bowl pavilion at Times Square

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Watch This Week’s Sketches:








  • Jason

    I was wondering how much Rich hated Bruno Mars for taking an entire drum solo away from his drummer at the Super Bowl.

    I’m pretty sure we’ve seen Girlfriends Talk Show THREE times this season. Shockingly! I think the other one was with Miley. They must really love this sketch. I guess it is pretty high up in the current reoccurring sketch power rankings as there aren’t many of those left. At least we are out of the Californians/Secret Word reign of terror.

    Also, where was Kate McKinnon this week? Was she ill? She only showed up in the black history sketch for a half-second as far as I could tell.

    • Jason – BM at the Superbowl can do whatever he wants. On the SNL stage… that’s a different story! Yes, it was weird that KM was very MIA this week. She wasn’t even in Women’s Group. Only 28 Days, and dancing in the cold open!

  • Matthew Gregg

    28 Reasons was one of the funniest digital shorts I have seen in a long time. Not only was it funny it was also a very enjoyable song to listen to.

  • taylor

    James was great! As were Rich and Rob.

    • awww, you!!!

      • taylor

        Rich, how many times has the host appeared in the cold open this season? I can remember Drake, Kerry Washington, and now Melissa McCarthy. Miley too? Didn’t this used to be something special?

        • yes, plus Fallon. crazy! it’s not that special anymore. :(

  • Sam Paxton

    Rich and Rob,

    I can only hope that the big news regarding the SNL podcast
    teased at the end of this episode involves the ideas thrown around here in the
    comments a few weeks back. I was gonna stay quiet until the roast and the pageants were out of the way, but I’m glad to hear something is on the horizon. Really looking forward to the discussion I hope is forthcoming.

    Oh, and did you see this …

    • Jason

      No Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer!? This list frightens and confuses me…

      • Sam Paxton

        That list doesn’t have Dysfunctional Family Feud, for my money an all-time top 5 sketch (if not my absolute favorite). Automatically discredited!

  • Alex Wilpon

    i always used to turn off snl once the host started saying goodnight, but thanks to rich i now cannot help watching and analyzing the post-goodnight hugs and interactions!

    • Alex – the best!!!

      • Alex Wilpon

        yes! are you looking forward to jim parsons?

        • Yes. I would love to see him do an impression of Jimmy Fallon. Would be meta-comedy gold!

  • Karol Ruth Silverstein

    Thanks for another great reacp guys. I’m def in the “overall weak episode” camp, and Rich, I think you nailed it when you said MM was given kind of the same character over and over. Hope the writers switch it up some the next time she hosts.

    For the record, I’ve been really enjoying Brooklyn Nine-Nine, but then again, my love for Andy Shamberg seems directly proportional to Rich’s indifference ; – ) i remember one of you saying the show wasn’t doing that well early on. Hope the Globe win buys them another season.

    Enjoy your hiatus!

    • Karol, i don’t know the recent ratings on B99, but since they put it after the Superbowl (with New Girl), i think we can assume FOX is “all in” for another season. i think it’s really gotten a lot stronger!

  • Lisa Claire

    Rich and Rob, Jerry Seinfeld discussed on Howard Stern how the Superbowl ad came to be. Fox approached him to do it (effectively giving him $12 million of ad space), and he thought it would be funny to do with the George Costanza character. As a bonus, he decided to throw in a plug for Comedians in Cars, but it wasn’t the original intention. He wrote it with Larry David. He said they needed permission from WB to use the the characters, but since no money was involved, they signed off right away.

    • Lisa – you’re my new favorite person.
      Is the JS interview worth listening to? I can catch it again through the Sirius app. (Been bored by most of the birthday show stuff)

      • Lisa Claire

        Lol. Thanks Rich. Yes, I think it’s worth a listen. They talk about the upcoming episode for CCC where HS is the guest. I think the birthday stuff boring also.

        • the HS episode of CCC has got to be controlled and boring – won’t it?

          • Lisa Claire

            Actually, it was pretty funny. They basically bickered the whole time. Best line was regarding Howard’s hair: “Are you going for Slash or Rhea Perlman?”

          • i just watched it. fun. Note at the dinner how amazingly chopped up the interview is. There is one section where there is an edit after every sentence!

  • shelly burr

    I’ve been listening to the podcast for years – just not a big commenter. Love the show! Thought I’d let you know, at the end of this episode, Rob and Rich start discussing a job interview and some other stuff that I’m sure wasn’t meant to make the final cut – the last 6 minutes. Thought you might want to remove it. Keep the podcasts coming!

    • Quentin Bruins

      I was just looking through all of the comments to see if someone had mentioned the last 6 minutes, I would have pointed it out sooner but I was trying to avoid Mr. Survivor spoilers. It definitely seems like an error.

      • thanks for flagging this. a little window into our world. i’m happy to hear people are making it all the way through the show!

        • Quentin Bruins

          Thank you for a great podcast Rich. You and Rob have converted my wife and I from occasional SNL viewers to religious SNL viewers. Your SNL knowledge is amazing.

          • my job is done here – wait, it’s never done, SNL returns in a few weeks!

  • Mike Bloom

    For some reason, the way Melissa McCarthy delivered “Pass the mash” just kills me. But, as groany as the game show sketch was, I thought it was infinitely better than the art museum one. Considering that the latter started with a missed camera change, you knew it was going to be sloppy. And Melissa and Nasim arguing was just…odd. Not funny, just kind of awkward to watch.

    I have actually really loved the late-night digital sketches this season, including this past one and the Mike O’Brien one with the bugs. But I think it stems for my love of shows like Portlandia, Tim and Eric, and Wonder Showzen, which gets its humor from that strange, amateur-like quality.

    Rob and Rich, do you think Nasim is having the worst (probably) last season of any cast member in recent years? Swing and a miss with nearly every character and sketch. The best she’s done was Shalin (was that her name?) in the classroom, and that was mild at best.

    • Mike, we’ll have to agree to disagree on the last few digital sketches at the end of the night, but we can agree on Nasim’s last year. She had a real slow start on the show, but was building nicely. an odd year, especially since they didn’t bring on a powerhouse female featured player who is stealing her thunder.

      • Mike Bloom

        It’s sad to say, but I think the only things I really remember her notably doing are Nicki Minaj in that Blue Ivy sketch (which I still watch from time to time) and that cold open where she was a translator for a Chinese ambassador or something like that. I mean there are certainly performers who bomb hard in sketches in recent years (Horatio Sanz, Will Forte), but at least they have highs to suit the lows. Nasim unfortunately has mostly lows, a couple mehs, and an Aziz Ansari impression.

        • agree on all, but i will add that i also still love the ariana huffington.

  • dsharden