‘Saturday Night Live’: Kim Kardashian defies (low) expectations

Saturday Night Live
Kim Kardashian & Halsey
October 9, 2021

When it was announced a few weeks ago that Kim Kardashian was going to host Saturday Night Live, the reaction was entirely predictable: outrage, derision, irritation. After all, what exactly qualifies Kim Kardashian, famous for being … famous, to be the host of television’s longest-running sketch comedy series? Can she act? Is she funny? Does she have any talent at all? In fact, the answers to those questions are in order: “No,” “No,” and “No.” Last night, Kardashian was just as monotone and stiff as she is in her Instagram posts, adding little to any particular sketch other than her own Kim Kardashian-ness.

However, if you think I’m going to completely shit on this episode, you might be disappointed. I don’t think the episode was particularly good — I certainly don’t think it was as good as people are falling over themselves to say it was over on Twitter — but it wasn’t the utter disaster that it could have been, either. After all, the Elon Musk episode was just not that long ago; we all remember what a host completely devoid of talent can do to this show. It ain’t pretty.

Instead, I think this episode was salvaged from catastrophe by two very important things:

1. To Kardashian’s credit, she and her family were all more than happy to poke fun of themselves and their image.

2. The writers not only knew the Kardashians and their brand well enough to craft multiple sketches around them, but also knew that Kim Kardashian could really only be able to handle playing Kim Kardashian, and so they wrote to her very limited strengths.

Again, it was not a great episode — it was not even a particularly good one. But thanks to low expectations, the Kardashians understanding that being able to laugh at themselves is money in the bank, and some very skillful writing, the Kim Kardashian episode will be remembered as being better than it had any right to be.

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Jared not only wanted blue state residents to fuck off and die, he made it policy

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Carole Baskin just won Joe Exotic’s zoo, and he compared this loss to the Black Lives Matter protests because 2020 is completely broken.

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Netflix found its cool cat to play Joe Exotic. Maybe 2020 doesn’t hate us after all.

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In which Adam Driver continues to be one of the most consistently great ‘Saturday Night Live’ hosts

Saturday Night Live
Adam Driver & Halsey
January 25, 2019

Adam Driver specializes in intensity. The characters he is known for tend to be barely containing their emotions, be it rage or anger or rage … And so it’s easy to forget — even after having hosted Saturday Night Live twice before — that he’s a brilliant comic actor. Now, a lot of that humor is based in his perceived intensity; in fact, three of my favorite sketches from last night were firmly predicated on the idea that Driver’s characters are on the edge of becoming dangerous (or, in the case of Kylo Ren, have firmly crossed it). But I’m not complaining — this weekend’s Saturday Night Live was funny (almost) from beginning to end, thanks in large part to Driver being such a great comic actor that he elevates what might otherwise be a mediocre bit in the hands of a less funny actor.

kylo ren snl thumbs up saturday night live adam driver

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Halsey, whoever she is, hosts a TERRIBLE ‘Saturday Night Live’ (but that’s not her fault)

Saturday Night Live
Halsey
February 9, 2019

So, this episode of Saturday Night Live, it was not good. With the exception of three sketches I will get to in a moment, last night’s SNL was really not good. The host, Halsey, is very pretty and a decent little actress for someone who is ~checks notes~ a singer? Of popular music? Guess I’ll have to take your word for it. But this episode was bad and Halsey was let down by some straight-up terrible writing. Like, maybe this was the worst episode of the season terrible, and that’s REALLY SAYING SOMETHING, YOU GUYS.

That said, it’s interesting to note that, like I said, there were three good sketches, and that they were all very pointed takes on race issues: “Them Trumps”; the sketch on the appropriate uses of blackface; and the tribute to black performers on SNL were all funny, sharp, and took no prisoners. Considering that it’s been quite the week for race news between Virginia and Liam Neeson and it being Black History Month, I suspect SNL didn’t have much choice but to include so many racially-based sketches. I don’t know how many black writers SNL currently has on its staff, but it can’t hurt that SNL has its first black head writer EVER with Michael Che, and as a result not only were these sketches written, but they were really good. Similarly, it’s not a coincidence that when one of the head writers was a woman a head writer a couple of seasons ago, the female-based sketches that made it on air were really funny and trenchant and for me, a female viewer, very relatable. And what I’m saying is HIRE ANOTHER FEMALE HEAD WRITER, SNL. AND MAYBE SOME MORE PEOPLE OF COLOR AND LADY WRITERS.

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Tonight’s the big 300th episode of ‘Supernatural.’ Are you emotionally prepared?

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Let’s criticize the winners of the SAG Awards which you definitely did not watch last night

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