Saturday Night Live: Miley Cyrus
October 5, 2015 7:15 AM - Season 41, Episode 1 - Subscribe

The 41st season premiere brings us Miley Cyrus hosting for the third time (and musical-guesting for the second), only one new cast member (Jon Rudnitsky), and a not-at-all-surprise cameo from Hillary Clinton.

Weekend Update seems to have settled into a groove where Colin Jost is very white and Michael Che calls him on it, and excellent turns from Pete Davidson ("Weed penis! Weed penis!") and Leslie Jones ("HOW AM I BEING SUBTLE?!?") round it out well enough, but Kyle Mooney's Pope fell flat.

Incidentally, some really bad accent work from normally strong players Mooney (his version of the Argentinian Pope Francis is markedly Italian) and Cecily Strong (whose Melania Trump seems more Argentinian than Slovenian).

The Fake Ad for Abilify For People Who Think They Can Be President worked well, with Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee sharing the target with Jim Gilmore and Bobby Jindal.

The Ersatz Digital Short was a Walking Dead takeoff on Taylor Swift's "squad", with Vanessa Bayer and Aidy Bryant ably mocking Swift's ever-growing entourage and tendency to just roll people across the stage at her concerts.

The Ten-to-One was a sequel of sorts to the Good Neighbor-ish "Miley loves Kyle and he is exasperated at this" bit from her last hosting swing, and it worked as well this time. Which is to say, more accessible than some of the other Good Neighbor stuff, but not quite a home run.

All in all, call this a workable season premiere that never really got tracking, and a decent enough start to the year.
posted by Etrigan (8 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've come to accept that I generally think the opposite of whatever the reviewer on the AV Club thinks of the show. I enjoyed this episode a lot and thought it was a strong opener.

I guess I'm mostly indifferent to Miley. Her music doesn't do anything for me and she's just sort of a competent but not-exceptional host. She's no Justin Timberlake.

It's always interesting to see how they catch up on a summer's worth of news they weren't around to make fun of. The opening song was a good way to do this and Bobby Monyhan's spin from Subway Jared to Josh Dugger was perfect.

The opener with Trump was unexceptional. It felt like every other Trump imitation ever with really nothing new. Honestly the less attention they give to Fuckface Von Clownstick the better off we'll all be. I expect he'll be hosting again this season.

I enjoyed Hillary's appearance. Sure, she did the "wooden non-actor reading off cue cards" thing but that's to be expected. I loved McKinnon's dig about her late acceptance of gay marriage and it was nice to see the real HRC poking a bit of fun at herself, even it it was just for political gain. And of course seeing her imitate Trump was fun.

I love that they have Darrell Hammond there in reserve whenever they need to pull out Bill. If Hillary becomes president Hammond will get to keep his announcer job for four more years.

It sure felt like the show was endorsing Clinton for President. They had digs at Sanders and most of the Republicans and there was a prominent commercial or two for Clinton during the broadcast. I'll just assume they'll have a few other cameos throughout the season in order to even it up.

I agree, Mooney's pope was probably the worst thing about the episode, though I wouldn't mind seeing a recurring pope character.

Very little of Keenan, which was fine with me.

I probably laughed more at this episode than I did all last season. A good start.
posted by bondcliff at 8:01 AM on October 5, 2015 [2 favorites]

I thought it was a pretty decent episode, and while I enjoyed it, I hope "The Millennials" is a one time thing.
posted by drezdn at 9:18 AM on October 5, 2015

I got a chuckle or two out of it. I liked the Trump impression and thought it was pretty good. It's going to be surreal when he's the next president How can SNL make him look more ridiculous than we will feel knowing that he is actually president.

Dear Leslie Jones, I know you're a fantastic writer for SNL and have been there for many years. If you have talents other than yelly screamo, and I'm betting you do, please show those. I know how easy it is to fall back into some stereotypical character that traces each line of the box mainstream society loves to put a good chunk of black women in, but your Sommore-light act minus the genuine joy wore thin almost from the moment you started it. I'm just not feeling you like that. Like Cube told Dre, stick to what you excel at.

I loved seeing Hillary on the show, and thought she had her moments. Miley's presence was largely pointless to me. I appreciate she choked herself up on her second song, but man the "what does it mean" yells were crap.

I also agree that Trump will surely host SNL again soon.
posted by cashman at 10:32 AM on October 5, 2015

There hasn't been an Italian-born pope since before Kyle Mooney was born so I don't know what's going on.
posted by ckape at 10:36 AM on October 5, 2015

I think Miley is really insufferable, but I was feeling her first song like that. I don't know what to say, no one is more surprised than me, but here we are, I guess.

Pete Davidson's routine on Update was the standout for me. I've been recommending it to people since Saturday night. And really, I almost think that Che and Jost work now. Jost just owning his privilege and general d-bag vibe kinda flows, speaking of sticking to what you excel at. And I already liked Che.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 11:41 AM on October 5, 2015

I thought Kyle's pope was hilarious and I couldn't figure out what the audience was totally not-on for it was. They seemed indifferent to a lot of the Weekend Update for whatever reason. I don't care for Miley much (both songs seemed super dead to me) but she's fine at acting and doesn't detract from stuff, but I'd love to see someone hosting who is really dynamite and works well with the cast. Not enough new guy to really make any judgments. I'm still mad that they sacked Brooks Wheelan. Millennials bit wanted to get some juice from Californians and was too long (and seemed to be trying a new spin on the "I can't even" skit from before... eh) A decent season opener from my perspective but didn't POP the way previous ones have.
posted by jessamyn at 9:11 PM on October 5, 2015

I'm still mad that they sacked Brooks Wheelan.

I can't wait until Brooks becomes really famous and comes back to host the show in twenty years.

I hope I never ever witness a song on SNL as shit as Miley Cyrus's second one. I once thought I'd actually have been ecstatic seeing the Flaming Lips play on SNL, too. Nope.

Anyway, I thought the show was a solid B. Not incredible, but I lol'd a good number of times, and at least once per sketch.

posted by not_on_display at 10:17 PM on October 5, 2015 [1 favorite]

I love Pete Davidson and everything about him, even his weird distracting eye that blinks 3x as much as his less weird eye. His Weekend Update spot was hilarious.

weed penis errday
posted by phunniemee at 7:34 AM on October 6, 2015 [2 favorites]

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