Saturday Night Live: Kristen Wiig / Dua Lipa
December 20, 2020 6:58 PM - Season 46, Episode 9 - Subscribe

Christmas episode.

  • Cold Open - Mike Pence Vaccination: Beck Bennett, Mikey Day, Lauren Holt, Maya Rudolph, Kenan Thompson, Alex Moffatt
  • Monologue: Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Kate McKinnon
  • Secret Word: Kenan Thompson, Kristen Wiig, Lauren Holt, Kate McKinnon, Andrew Dismukes
  • Christmas Morning: Cecily Strong, Beck Bennett, Kyle Mooney, Chloe Fineman, Kristen Wiig
  • Christmas Eve 1944: Kyle Mooney, Beck Bennett, Alex Moffatt, Kristen Wiig, Andrew Dismukes, Bowen Yang, Mikey Day, Andrew Dismukes, Beck Bennett, Kyle Mooney, Dua Lipa
  • A Teacher: Beck Bennett, Andrew Dismukes, Ego Nwodim, Lauren Holt, Kristen Wiig
  • Home Alone 2 Alternate Ending: Melissa Villaseñor, Kristen Wiig, Kyle Mooney, Andrew Dismukes
  • Dua Lipa - Don't Start Now
  • Weekend Update: Colin Jost, Michael Che
    • Smokey Robinson: Chris Redd
    • Willie: Kenan Thompson
    • Landis Trotter: Heidi Gardner
  • The Grinch: Mikey Day, Kristen Wiig, Kyle Mooney, Chloe Fineman, Pete Davidson
  • Christmas Surprise: Beck Bennett, Melissa Villaseñor, Kristen Wiig, Lauren Holt, Punkie Johnson
  • Dua Lipa - Levitating
posted by rhizome (13 comments total)
This was a pretty disorganized and boring show. I'm glad Alex Moffatt is wearing the Biden costume, and I am sure he'll get more used to the role, but he definitely was a little off, as was Maya. I liked the anachronism of Chistmas Eve 1944; I loved Ego as the history teacher. It's good to see Dismukes stretch his legs, too.

But the Grinch was just terrible. How much time and effortdid they put into getting pete into that costume, only for that piece of drek? Sorry, Pete. The show was worse without you.

Surprisingly, the news was kinda limp. Willy gets a hall pass ONLY because Kenan Thompson is brilliant and brings humanity to every character he touches. Otherwise, no, Willy, don't, no you just did, oh gawd. Heidi's web-maven and Chris's Smokey Robinson were just okay. The tradition of having Che and Jost trade writing jokes for each other without rehearsal, this time, seemed pretty uninspired. I blame 2020. A few jokes landed.

Dua Lipa had the worst staging I'd seen in a while—while her dancers had passable choreography, she just sat there and writhed. And excuse me, ma'am, would you please remove your hat? Thank you.

And the rest of the show was Wiig, turned down a couple of notches, and with writing from a different generation to work from, which was interesting—this is the only time I've liked watching the Password game. (Though it was odd to see Kenan in Bill Hader's shoes. I did like Kate's jaded european actress.

I think Kate and Wiig would have been VERY WELL UTILIZED if they were put in that formulaic "Gov't interviews alien abductees" sketch. I'd like to have seen them improv.

posted by not_on_display at 10:22 PM on December 20, 2020 [3 favorites]

Was really disappointed with this one. Used to enjoy Wiig.

Moffatt's Biden is new, but didn't come close.

Christmas Eve 1944 was ok - Yang owned/ salvaged the sketch.
posted by porpoise at 12:33 AM on December 21, 2020

Not good.
posted by Don.Kinsayder at 2:32 AM on December 21, 2020

Not a terrible episode but I expected better things with Wiig hosting. While I'm glad they didn't pull out all her old characters (I never need to see Target Lady again) they could have done a bit better.

Carrey is done as Biden. This is good news.

Dua Lipa is, big surprise, Not My Thing, but I didn't hate it. It had a nice beat and you can dance to it.

The only good joke on WU was the last one.
posted by bondcliff at 7:53 AM on December 21, 2020

Meanwhile, moms everywhere have been sharing their own Christmas Morning stories. That hit hard.
posted by Ruki at 8:16 AM on December 21, 2020 [5 favorites]

Meanwhile, moms everywhere have been sharing their own Christmas Morning stories. That hit hard.

I thought that may have been the best bit of the show because... yeah, very relateable.

I thought something was weird about the cold open, a lot of people seemed to be really reading from cards more than usual but YAY to Moffatt as Biden. He's good, could use a new character that isn't some rich awful dude, and he's NOT CARREY.

Wiig kinda bugs me, looks odd lately, and I always find it weird when someone talks about having kids (twins!) in that way where you know they either adopted or chose surrogacy (Wiig and her partner had a surrogate). Which... hey it's great to have a family however you want to do it, but it's odd that we as a society don't have a better way of talking about it, still. They didn't have her in her worst characters but stressed-out-xmas-lady and annoying-game-show-lady are not my faves either. I was just delighted they didn't pull Fred Armisen in to do that terrible singing thing they did. You can maybe tell not_on_display and I watched this show together.

Standouts were Ego in the teacher sketch (sticking a pin in a lot of those hot-for-teacher bits they'd done in the past, finally!) and Yang in 1944 which I enjoyed just because it was so weird. Was happy to see Chris Redd at all (and I lol'd at stupid Chanookah jokes), missed Cecily and Aidy and Dua Lipa was fine, enjoyed her more in the sketch than her songs (I kinda loved that hat) but not really standoutish.
posted by jessamyn at 9:13 AM on December 21, 2020 [1 favorite]

When Wiig emerged for her monologue sporting that short, straight hairstyle I was so hoping there would be a Love, Actually sketch in which she would get to play Emma Thompson's character. Instead it was a handful of stale throwbacks and a severely underwritten Grinch sketch that, as not_on_display pointed out, was a complete waste of some amazing makeup and set design.

I still love Kristen, but I think this was one of the weaker Christmas shows in recent memory.
posted by Atom Eyes at 1:18 PM on December 21, 2020

I hope part of the return to normalcy with the Biden administration and doing the presidential impersonation in-house is that they'll stop overstuffing the cold opens like this.

Jost's last joke was I think the first of these joke exchanges where I actually laughed.
posted by ckape at 1:36 PM on December 21, 2020

I think Moffatt might have the Biden kernel I was hoping would emerge in Carrey, not the least because I thought he was Sudeikis for the first few seconds. I think he can do all of the angles other actors have pursued, the only question is whether he will. Kind of like hoping the Democratic Party starts playing offense. One problem is he doesn't have Joe's beady eyes, they need someone like that guy in The Unicorn TV series (or his younger doppelganger who has been showing up on commercials lately).

I LOVED the "My Favorite Things," even if it was a stuntcast. I loved the idea, the lyrics, the presentation...all of it. I wonder if the show had to get an individual rights license for the song to change the lyrics. The internet is not much help in clarifying this.
posted by rhizome at 6:19 PM on December 21, 2020

Ok. I’ll say it. I liked this episode, and I don’t even really like Kristen Wiig all that much. But I love Maya Rudolph (I really liked her as Gen in The Good Place and she was part of one of my favorite SNL casts). I love Dua Lipa because I think she’s fun pop music and I just kind of dig her beats. I’ve been listening to her for a few years via Spotify (that’s where I found her in the first place). I enjoyed My Favorite Things, Christmas Eve 1944, Mom’s Robe, A Teacher, and Weekend Update’s joke shuffle.

Are y’all salty because last week was soooo good and this week just wasn’t at that level?
posted by sara is disenchanted at 9:17 PM on December 21, 2020 [6 favorites]

Oh yeah, "My Favorite Things" sounded like a recycled joke from the 1990's by Negativland.
That said, it's very much in the absurdist vein of Negativland.
That that said, it's also in the absurdist vein of the Armisen/Wiig improv singing desk pieces.
So I don't know how to feel. I simply remember my favorite things...
posted by not_on_display at 5:47 PM on December 23, 2020 [1 favorite]

I enjoyed A Teacher and Mom's Robe and Kate's European nihilist actress. And Dua Lipa's hat!
posted by joannemerriam at 8:03 PM on December 23, 2020

I really enjoyed this episode. Was quite surprised that there was zero mention of WW84. I thought there would be a skit related to that, what a missed opportunity!
posted by pjsky at 7:47 AM on December 29, 2020

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