The real Stormy Daniels joined Martin Short, Alec Baldwin, Ben Stiller, Scarlett Johansson, and Jimmy Fallon in a star-studded Trumpian cold open.
One of the most versatile comedians and performers of the day, Donald Glover was on fire with his hosting stint on "Saturday Night Live" this weekend. He appeared in almost every sketch on the night, as well as performing twice as musical guest Childish Gambino.
Even better, Glover brought us the strongest episode of the season so far, and miraculously did so without a single dud across an hour-and-a-half of sketches. The very worst sketch of the night was still funny and ultimately a success, making it both fun and challenging to try and rank these. Perhaps the biggest shock of the night is that Glover is a two-time failure at getting hired on "SNL," because he proved a master at sketch comedy!
As usual, we're ranking all the sketches from worst to first, including the Cold Open and the regular "Weekend Update" segments. We'll skip the musical guests, because they're not usually funny - unless Ashlee Simpson shows up. We wrap up with a look at the cast-member who had the strongest week.
Donald Glover tried to spice up his sex live with Melissa Villasenor by having them say things they normally wouldn't say in the bedroom. Like, he called her a slut and she countered by telling him that was retarded. Throughout the sketch, her ad libs just got worse and worse until she finally role-played as Bill Cosby when they were trying cop and criminal.
MONOLOGUE - Donald Glover
"It's so great to be back here... especially now that I'm rich," Glover coolly joked to kick off his monologue. "No, seriously, I recommend it. I was poor here and it's way better when you're rich." He then wandered around the set lamenting that he'd auditioned twice for the show and not gotten on, harassing the other cast members about what they did that worked. It certainly looked like a sneak peek of his Lando Calrissian swagger as he was channeling all the smooth of Billy Dee Williams, and then some! It was a great spoof on ego and set the stage for a fun night. After all, if Glover is willing to mock himself mercilessly in the cold open, he should be game for anything.
Glover got to officially premiere his take on "Star Wars'" Lando Calrissian in this sketch that saw him hosting a galactic summit which began with the question, "Where the hell are all the black people in space?" He was proud to be speaking to all the black humans in the galaxy, which equaled three: Leslie Jones, Kenan Thompson and Chris Redd. Thompson portrayed Forest Whitaker's Saw Gerrera and they got us when he asked the attendees to roar to let their voices be heard (he wrote his speech a week ago). "Star Wars" is so very white, but this is the sharpest and funniest exploration of that we've ever seen.
Donald Glover, Kenan Thompson and Chris Redd were three prisoners working for 30-cents an hour at a call center. The joke was that they talked all tough until the phone rang, and then they slipped into these ridiculously polished voices -- some might call them their "white" voice -- to talk to the customers. Between calls, they talked of their hellish antics inside the walls, attacking other prisoners and doing unspeakable things to survive. The juxtaposition was jarring, but also relatable for anyone who's ever dealt with customer service over the phone.
Picking up where the Cold Open left off, Rudy Giuliani's "Kings of Dementia" tour was the main focus of the conversation between Michael Che and Colin Jost. They also delved into Robert Mueller's 49 questions for Donald Trump, Trump's former doctor Harold Bornstein, and attorney Ty Cobb.
Later in the broadcast, Che's best joke came when a headshot of Kanye West showed up with his quote about slavery being a choice and he simply said, "Pass."
Leslie Jones chimed in on the Facebook dating app which was just a ruse for her to pay tribute to all the terrible men she's dated, and the one that got away because he was gay, Colin Jost. Never mind his girlfriend Scarlett Johansson. Leslie Jones is not acknowledging her, ironically because she was on hand that night.
Donald Glover, Pete Davidson and Heidi Gardner were hired to provide captions for Barbie's new Instagram page, but things didn't get off to a great start. Heidi was to on the nose, Pete too lazy and Donald went very, very dark. Even worse, not one of them could grasp that Barbie was holding a clutch and not a chocolate bar. The captions got better (that's surely not the right word) as the sketch continued, with Glover going further down the existential rabbit hole until he emerged with a Barbie who'd achieved awareness that she was a toy and the only way to achieve freedom of self was through suicide. You know, Barbie stuff!
COLD OPEN - Stormy Coming
Ben Stiller reprised his turn as a very nervous Michel Cohen, who reached out to Alec Baldwin's Trump in a panic over the changing stories. Martin Short was almost unrecognizable as Dr. Harold Bornstein (who has all the drugs). The sketch was packed with characters from the Trump administration, including Aidy Bryant's Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Cecily Strong's Melania Trump, Leslie Jones' Omarosa, Beck Bennett's Mike Pence, and Kate McKinnon as Rudy Giuliani. Scarlett Johansson reprised her role as Ivanka Trump alongside Jimmy Fallon as Jared Kushner. Finally, Stormy Daniels dropped by herself and our White House Administration really is a cartoon isn't it? "I know you don't believe in climate change, but a storm is coming," Daniels warned Trump. "I've never been so scared and horny in my life!" he responded.
Raz P. Berry, "The Night (I Watched You)"
In this late '80s R&B pastiche, Donald Glover sings about catching Cecily Strong cheating on him. He confronts her in a bar and tells her he cancelled all their credit cards and put all her nice jewelry up his ass. All of this was done in a very over-the-top smooth R&B intonation. The revenge tactics got even stranger and grosser as the sketch progressed, but Glover never broke character, and Strong literally never got a word in edgewise. When she did, the sketch took an even better turn as she had no idea who he was.
A Kanye Place
In this parody of the film "A Quiet Place," a group of friends try to stay silent so the monsters hunting them won't be able to find them, but then Donald Glover sees that Kanye West tweeted he would have voted for Trump. After seeing the signed hat, Kenan Thompson shouted, "Oh come on, Kanye!" and got immediately snatched away. One by one, Kanye's latest antics from attending a baby shower to releasing "pooptity scoop" music and even losing int on TMZ were fodder for the group's one-by-one abduction and death at the hands of the monster. It was such a simple entryway into the bizarre West story and yet each exclamation/abduction worked and it never stopped being funny.
Mikey Day is the accuser in a case against Jurassic Park, the pristine and beautiful park where all his friends and family got eaten and killed when the dinosaurs escaped. Glover looked every bit the slimy lawyer, as he represented the park. His argument was that the park wasn't responsible for "lost and damaged items, like your friends and family." He sustained his own objections and declared court adjourned. It was a tour de force performance and we found ourselves starting to wonder why Glover never got on this show. He's a natural at sketch comedy and live performances.
A$AP Rocky appeared in a cameo to cap this brilliant pre-recorded sketch featuring Donald Glover, Kenan Thompson and Chris Redd as a hip-hop trio with some serious emotional baggage they are not dealing with through their music, or personally. That's where Cecily Strong comes in as their therapist. Did we mention this was framed through a music video, so when they had a breakthrough, it was immediately followed by a breakdown. All three men were fully committed to their characters, portraying tough-as-nails rappers peeling back the facade of their masculinity to be vulnerable with one another. In other words, the sketch was absolutely ridiculous but it worked. Most importantly, it was funny from top to bottom.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Kenan Thompson must have been inspired by Donald Glover as guest host, because he was on fire throughout the night, giving us a stellar Forest Whitaker impression as Saw Gerrera in the "Star Wars" sketch, getting snatched in "A Kanye Place," and cracking us up as the uptight Barbie developer, the Jurassic judge and the "funny" member of Friendos. We're not sure he's worked as hard in one show over the past three seasons. Chris Redd and Cecily Strong had strong showings as well, but for consistency with sheer volume, no one came close to Thompson's evening.
"Saturday Night Live" returns next week with host Amy Schumer and musical guest Kacey Musgraves, airing live coast-to-coast at 11:35 p.m ET/8:35 p.m. PT.