Saturday Night Live: James McAvoy / Meek Mill
January 27, 2019 6:43 PM - Season 44, Episode 11 - Subscribe

I think this was James McAvoy's first time hosting.

  • Tucker Carlson Tonight - Alex Moffatt, Cecily Strong, Kate McKinnon, Steve Martin
  • Monologue - James McAvoy
  • Virgin Hunk - James McAvoy, Cecily Strong, Kate McKinnon, Heidi Gardner, Aidy Bryant, Maria Villaseñor, Ego Nwodim
  • Mr. H - James McAvoy, Chris Redd, Pete Davidson, Ego Nwodim, Mikey Day
  • Air Traffic Control - Heidi Gardner, Mikey Day, Kate McKinnon, James McAvoy, Kenan Thompson, Beck Bennett
  • Upper East Side - Leslie Jones, James McAvoy, Heidi Gardner, Kate McKinnon
  • Charmin Focus Group - Aidy Bryant, Kyle Mooney, James McAvoy, Kate McKinnon, Kenan Thompson
  • Meek Mill - Uptown Vibes
  • Weekend Update - Michael Che, Colin Jost
    • Soulja Boy - Chris Redd
    • Cathy Anne - Cecily Strong
  • Return to Narnia - James McAvoy, Cecliy Strong, Aidy Bryant, Kate McKinnon, Alex Moffatt
  • Super Bowl Party - James McAvoy, Cecily Strong, Kenan Thompson, Aidy Bryant, Maria Villaseñor, Mikey Day, Beck Bennett, Kyle Mooney
  • Meek Mill - Going Bad
  • I Love My Dog - Chris Redd, Pete Davidson Kenan Thompson, James McAvoy, Cecily Strong,Heidi Gardner, Aidy Bryant, Ego Nwodim
  • New Orleans Vacation - James McAvoy, Heidi Gardner, Aidy Bryant, Kenan Thompson, Beck Bennett, Maria Villaseñor, Ego Nwodim
posted by rhizome (18 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Has anyone found a site that allows people outside the US to watch the cold open? YouTube blocks it.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 6:59 PM on January 27, 2019

Good enough episode. James McAvoy is a charmer, and I’m a sucker for the Beck Bennett and Kyle Mooney combo. Leslie Jones is great. I just like her.

The cold open, though, continues to be soft, underwritten, and criminally toothless.

Finally, give us more Ego Nwodim, damnit!
posted by Don.Kinsayder at 7:23 PM on January 27, 2019

I remain so deeply in love with Kate McKinnon it actually kind of hurts now
posted by Hermione Granger at 7:54 PM on January 27, 2019 [5 favorites]

I don't totally understand why McAvoy's Charmin character was from Philadelphia, but his accent wasn't horrible. It was better than Jimmy Fallon's Philly accent.
posted by gladly at 8:35 PM on January 27, 2019 [7 favorites]

I am also painfully in love with Kate McKinnon but her costumed as Wilbur Ross is terrifying
posted by skycrashesdown at 8:59 PM on January 27, 2019 [6 favorites]

> I don't totally understand why McAvoy's Charmin character was from Philadelphia, but his accent wasn't horrible

because he's good at accents, or better than me at least, so they probably said "if your character is going to say some weirdo shit then what dirtbag accent can you throw on it?" and he was like "wooder ice" and everyone gave a standing ovation.

is my guess
posted by komara at 8:59 PM on January 27, 2019 [7 favorites]

First of all: Steve Martin killed it! What a surprise, and he did Roger Stone so well! It took me a second to figure it out (I thought John Goodman had lost a lot of weight), but I thought it was really a special performance. Frankly I've wondered if he can be funny anymore, so maybe the Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee appearance really jiggled something in him. Right on.

I thought this was a pretty good episode, above average for the season. At least half made me laugh, even the Narnia one. Also, probably the best Cathy Anne, though I hadn't seen the Soldja Boy interview that that bit was a parody of. Only one that never works for me are the Bachelor sketches, but I can overlook that. I'm sure there are people with more invested in that world who think it's funnier.

I was wondering if the Philly accent has more Scottish in it, as opposed to New York, which may have something to do with it (an old classic), but I don't know enough to trace all of the features back to their origins. Regardless, I liked the suggestion stories.
posted by rhizome at 9:56 PM on January 27, 2019 [4 favorites]

Great to see Steve Martin as Roger Stone. At first I thought it was DeNiro and I groaned, thinking it was going to be terrible. Martin is so great though.

This was a pretty good episode. The sketches seemed a bit more solidly written then they have been this season.

I still have no idea who James McAvoy is though he did well as a host.
posted by bondcliff at 6:36 AM on January 28, 2019 [3 favorites]

I don't totally understand why McAvoy's Charmin character was from Philadelphia, but his accent wasn't horrible. It was better than Jimmy Fallon's Philly accent.

Could it be a nod to Split and Glass being set in Philly?
posted by DrAstroZoom at 9:29 AM on January 28, 2019 [2 favorites]

Could it be a nod to Split and Glass being set in Philly?

I just saw Split (and watched Unbreakable last weekend) ((and haven't seen Glass yet), and I don't recall any of the Philly accents being that thick. He didn't seem to pick it up to that extent.
posted by Etrigan at 11:02 AM on January 28, 2019

my girlfriend wandered into the room halfway through the "Return to Narnia" sketch, stopped to watch for a moment, then plaintively asked, "is that me?"

reader, I dodged the question
posted by prize bull octorok at 1:24 PM on January 28, 2019 [11 favorites]

I live in New Orleans and two of my friends come to visit me multiple times a year. I sent them the clip and got this in return:

“We loved the N'awlins clip! We were both like 1) lol!, 2) uncomfortable silence, 3) this is us, isn't it?”
posted by komara at 7:31 PM on January 28, 2019 [4 favorites]

I've been liking McAvoy the longer's he's been around.

Lampooning Fox/the rightwingnut felt a little more savage than the usual.

Thought that 'Air Traffic Control' was ok - and was funny - because the accent being lampooned is a celebrated point of pride, rather than an English as a second (or multiple) language accent. Huh, according to wikipedia, international air control is conducted in the language used by the station on the ground, although a request for communication in English must be honoured.

'Super Bowl Party' - I thought the original incarnations of 'the boys' skit kinda annoying, but if they keep using it as a vehicle for guests to use to play the '50s dad trope and vie for top-50's-dad, I'm a-ok with that -- but then... ugh.
posted by porpoise at 10:13 PM on January 28, 2019

I really thought that since Mike Myers has been making the rounds lately (he's in Bohemian Rhapsody) that we might get an 'All Things Scottish' sketch.
I'm kinda sad it didn't happen, and they weren't even that good the first time around.
posted by ApathyGirl at 10:47 AM on January 29, 2019 [2 favorites]

Hah yeah, that would have been good, maybe in an "Oh stewardess, I speak jive" way.
posted by rhizome at 2:18 PM on January 29, 2019

Agreed that the sketches seemed more solidly written. And, despite not knowing or caring much about McAvoy's work, this episode was one of the funnier ones in recent memory. He strikes me as a particularly good sport.

The Charmin character was also hilarious. His timing is so great.

Air traffic control was so-so until the very end, when they transferred to Beck Bennett (it seems spoilery to mention any more, because the surprise was the funny part). I also wondered if it began as a Fyre sketch, with the Kylie Jenner brand management stuff. Maybe I was just hoping for a Fyre sketch.

Return to Narnia: "Lazy Hermione." "I feel seen." It's too much!

I loved "I Love My Dog," and I second the motion to get more Ego Nwodim.

I also love Heidi Gardner's pretentious traveler character. The N'awlins sketch was so excellent, better than the Cuba one. And McAvoy cracking up was a bonus.
posted by witchen at 7:21 AM on January 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

> the accent being lampooned is a celebrated point of pride, rather than an English as a second (or multiple) language accent.

Across your country, there are people like you who associate their first language with shame, or not even being a language at all.

How the English Failed to Stamp Out the Scots Language
posted by ASCII Costanza head at 10:33 PM on January 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Frankly I've wondered if [Steve Martin] can be funny anymore

I enjoyed the Netflix special he did with Martin Short, on stage. (As well as the Mulaney/Kroll analog.)

As for this episode: it went down well. Maybe nothing for the BEST OF reels (except maybe if there's a Narnia reel), but the host did good accents, he seemed like he was into it, he wasn't obvious about reading cue cards, and he had great timing. And the rest of the cast shined around him. Lotsa great Cecily moments (who really should be recognized as one of the greatest cast members ever). Two great hip-hop films that had nothing to do with one another, and were both hilarious. (Same with Chris Redd—one of the best prospects I've seen in ages, hands down.) Seriously, I don't give a fuck that SNL incorporates more filmed stuff into their hour. They still have plenty of good live stuff, and with the films being editable, when they're playing live, there are less sketches that fall flat on their ass. I think the filmed stuff, ever since Samberg & crew, have been the best ever (with possible exception of the 1985-86 Short-Guest-Shearer crew, and earlier, Schiller's reels).

Even Meek Mill—the same Meek Mill I will ask myself ten years from now, "Who?"— was okay!

I think sometimes the way they put makeup on whatever side-character Melissa Villaseñor's playing, it's SCARY. "80's goth gone power yuppie," I think was my last assessment of the makeup job on her. Otherwise I am glad to see she's gotten a lot of time. And Ego and she both had MORE THAN ONE LINE and their lines were FUNNY LINES, not just lines-for-extras. WELL DONE SNL.
posted by not_on_display at 10:36 PM on February 2, 2019

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