If you turned on SNL this week expecting just a normal episode, you were probably very surprised, with good reason! For one thing, the show was on Sunday, which is completely out of the ordinary for the program, and if you were just turning your TV on on Saturday I don’t know how you ended up seeing the show on Sunday. Maybe this was a bad hypothetical for me to set up. Secondly, the show was twice as long as usual. Thirdly — which kind of explains the first two — this episode was a celebration of SNL’s 40th anniversary, complete with lots of highlight reels, special musical guests, and performances from former cast members.
In case you missed the ceremony, or if you watched it but want to watch some of the clips again several days later, which totally checks out because it was a fun show to watch, here are some highlights.
There wasn’t really a host on Sunday, but if there was, it was Steve Martin. He would come up a couple of times in the show, in highlight reels and as King Tut in the musical tribute, and finally as a person trying and failing to shake Lorne Michael’s hand during the goodbyes, a thing you can watch on loop in this GIF. Here’s Martin doing the monologue:
The first sketch of the night was “Celebrity Jeopardy,” with host Alex Trebek, classic guests Sean Connery, Tony Bennett, and Turd Ferguson, and more recently celebrated impressions like Kate McKinnon’s Justin Bieber and Jim Carrey’s Matthew McConaughey. Slightly older meets slightly newer, what a night this was for both older and newer things!
As previously mentioned, the show was packed with a ton of highlight reels, which all did a good job of making you feel old or young or sad or happy, or maybe a mix of all those, depending on what kind of mood you were in this weekend. One of the coolest highlight reels was the cast member auditions, where you got to see the impressions, characters, and/or nervous smiles of young Gilda Radner, young Tracy Morgan, young Stephen Colbert, and young Other Comedians That Did Or Did Not Make It Into The Cast, Just Watch The Clip!
Jane Curtin, Amy Poehler, and Tina Fey sat at the desk for a special “Weekend Update,” which thankfully also came with its own highlight reel and with a cute bit where celebrities stopped by to do impressions of their favorite characters from SNL history. This was fun to watch and I hope these three anchors come back next week or even just every week forever!
During a tribute to SNL’s 40 years of musical comedy, Martin Short was almost blown away by the fans directed at Maya Rudolph’s Beyoncé hair, and audience member Steven Spielberg got to watch as Bill Murray sang the Jaws theme song.
Following the musical comedy tribute, Andy Samberg and Adam Sandler teamed up for a digital short that was also a comedy song and, if we are being fully honest, kind of a highlight reel, too.
One of the final sketches of the night was “Wayne’s World.” Do you ever wonder what “Wayne’s World” would be like if it were made in 2015? Here is your answer, kind of!