Christoph Waltz, loser of the “Best Villain” 2010 MTV Movie Award for his role in Inglourious Basterds, hosted Saturday Night Live this past weekend and was a charming, odd, especially game treat. Though he struggled a bit and, with all due respect, sometimes came off as more of a coked-up Austrian you met in a bar who is just very excited to be included in something (and maybe he can stay on your couch tonight? and do you have any more friends he can meet?) rather than an Oscar nominee MTV Movie Award nominee, he was fearless and unselfconscious enough to overcome the awkwardness that usually comes with watching someone try to read a cue card while surrounded by a team of too-big-smiling professional sketch comedians. Almost all of the sketches were fun and enjoyable, the “almost” being necessary mostly because of the return of Regine. Arrggg-nooooo! (I understand that Christoph Waltz is not in Argo, but it is still maybe a good pun? Both his thing and Argo are nominated for various Academy Awards.) (If not that, how about: DjangNOOOOOO!) Ugh, Regine. The thing about turning a character into a recurring sketch even though you don’t have any new jokes for the character or any new direction in which the character can go is that you don’t have to do it! No one is going to punch you in the face or talk about you behind your back if you don’t! With that said: Let’s talk about a few of the good ones!

The poop cruise cold open was very good. In cold open tradition it did go on for a very long time, but I thought it had enough going on within it to give reason for the length. All of the separate bits were funny (the newspaper bit was my fave bit. also Fred Armisen’s “Michael Jackson” bit.) and Jason Sudeikis and Cecily Strong’s cruise directors, Dean and Diana, held it together well. Gr8.

Pope Retirement

“Djesus Uncrossed”

Christoph Waltz was at his silliest and most excited during the “Jamarcus Brothers” sketch, and it pushed it from coming off as fine and funny enough (the song titles are very good) to coming off as a REAL TREAT!

Kate McKinnon did a very good job as Weekend Update’s “Olya Povlatsky.” I thought her appearance here was one of the best parts of the episode, EVEN THOUGH I personally dislike jokes about “Who Let the Dogs Out” and the milkshake song so much, even when they are included in order to show how behind the times a Russian village is. Dislike. Otherwise: LIKE.

A quick scan of blogs and Twitter shows that not many people liked “Tippy” this week because she seemed too much like characters we’ve seen many times before (most recently with Kristen Wiig). That is more than a fair argument, and it is totally true, but also I liked “Tippy”! She felt classic! And I laughed! So shut your mouths! Or keep them open, everyone’s entitled to their own opinion about “Tippy”! But I thought she was enjoyable!

“Secret Admirer Letter,” the final sketch of the night, was my favorite. So good. Very, very good.

Finally, Alabama Shakes performed and they did a great job. Also Christoph Waltz said their name correctly 0 times.

Comments (21)
  1. “Let me tell you about my dream house, Seth. Bear with me.”
    “I am.”
    “No, in my dream house, I have a bear with me.”

  2. “Heck yes!… I said Heck Yes!”

    I just loved this entire episode, front to back. I wish I could hang out with this episode of SNL.

  3. I had to fast forward through Regine because, no.

    • Regine seemed like it was written specifically so that Fred Armisen could make everyone else lose it. I mean, I don’t think they were faking, I think they were legitimately losing it. But it was almost like hidden in that sketch was a bet between Fred Armisen and everyone else that they wouldn’t lose it.

  4. Djesus was hysterical and surprisingly risky for SNL.

  5. GREAT episode. The only sketch I didn’t care for was the “What Have You Become?” game show, but even that was redeemed by Waltz’s breakdown at the end.

    Side note: I don’t want to see Jay Pharoah on this show anymore. Sorry, Jay Pharoah.

    • His Stephen A. Smith is pretty good, but the real Stephen A. Smith is so goddamn annoying that I can’t even stand watching some impersonate him for more than a few seconds. Also, I feel like they have to shoehorn that in because he does a pretty good job on the impression, but do enough people know who Stephen A. Smith is for that to be funny?

      • Yeah, I don’t know. A particular sports commentator doesn’t seem like the ideal source for sketch material. When he came on with that Chris Rock impression in the cold open, I just felt tired and wanted to close my eyes.

    • For real on Pharoah. I signed in just to ask why is he on this show? He is such a one trick pony, and that one trick is a bad trick. No more. Stop.

    • Does anybody else feel like he intentionally breaks to try to get laughs?

  6. I am surprised that as someone who should not care even a little, I was kind of offended by the Djesus sketch? I mean not really, and IANA(Christian), but I was weirded out by it..

    Also, Tippy goes right into the hopper with Gilly and that other Kristin Wiig one-upswomanship character for me, so dislike. And of course Regine. Booooooo to you, Regine.

    Wasn’t there some Fred Armisen sketch a million years ago where he and someone were off-putting characters because they lived in a stark white apartment and liked cutting edge art and such? They could bring that back, if they need an off-putting Fred Armisen character.

    On a positive note, Alabama Shakes and the aforementioned Kate McKinnon update thing were great!

    • To your first point, wasn’t that kind of the reaction to Inglourious Basterds and Django? A lot of people enjoyed both films, myself included, but it left some offended and uncomfortable… So in that regard the Djesus sketch is spot on.

  7. For a stage that’s supposed to be infamous for sounding terrible, The Alabama Shakes sounded fantastic! I hadn’t really listened to them before, but I will definitely be checking them out. Also, I don’t really know what this says about the countless acts that I really like who sounded blah when performing on SNL…

  8. I’ve read nothing but love for Alabama Shakes on the web. I don’t get it! Isn’t it just average bar-band classic rock with a good singer? Is that something people get excited about? They make the Black Keys sound as daring as Marnie Stern.

    • It’s good, honest music, with a really talented performer writin’ and singin’ the tunes. I agree, that their explosion onto the scene has been surprising given the style of music, but I like what they’re doing.

  9. If Regine had not been in this episode, it would have been perfect. I really liked “What Have You Become” mainly because of Christoph Waltz’s delivery. But, even though I enjoyed watching him tap dance, it seemed like they just tacked on that ending because, hey, he can dance! SNL is not the best at ending sketches. Taran Killiam’s excellent Brad Pitt in Inglourious Basterds impression was my favorite part of Djesus. I also really liked Tippy because oh man, do I know some people like that.

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