Saturday Night Live: Elon Musk’s best sketches

SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk (Photo by Hannibal Hanschke-Pool/Getty Images)
SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk (Photo by Hannibal Hanschke-Pool/Getty Images) /

As has already been discussed ad nauseam on the internet, Elon Musk was a controversial choice to appear on Saturday Night Live. I myself wrote an article about how various cast and crew members seemed displeased about Musk hosting the show and  why I agreed with them.

But it’s finally happened now, and so we can stop discussing the controversial choice and start discussing the episode itself. All in all, it wasn’t the season’s best episode, but it still had some pretty good sketches. While Musk was not a terrific performer, his acting didn’t drag the show down and the writing staff did a good job of creating roles that Musk could play.

Here were the best sketches of the night.

Saturday Night Live with Elon Musk review: Mother’s Day Message Cold Open

This was really sweet. Almost the whole cast brought their moms along, and most of the moms got to say a joke on live TV. None of the jokes were brilliant and none of the moms are comedians, but the whole thing was just really nice to watch. And wow, Miley Cyrus can really sing.

Saturday Night Live with Elon Musk review: Gen Z Hospital

I think I’m probably in the minority here, but I actually liked this one. It seemed really stupid at first, but as it went on, it started to grow on me, and I realized the stupidity was the whole point. The key is that this sketch isn’t really just making fun of teenagers who overuse certain “internet-age terminology”  (much of which is appropriate AAVE and black slang). The target of this sketch is, in fact, exactly that type of lazy humor just as much as it is the kids themselves. Sure, SNL was making fun of Gen-Z a little bit, but they were making fun of millennials just as much.

I saw many people online who seemed upset about the use of AAVE in the sketch and who felt like the sketch was distasteful in that regard. I’m far from qualified to speak on the subject of cultural appropriation, but I will point out that the sketch was written by Michael Che and Gary Richardson, two Black writers.

Saturday Night Live with Elon Musk review: Post-Quarantine Conversation

This was a solid sketch. The premise is very relatable, and it served as an easy joke machine: people try to make small talk at the first party post-quarantine, while voiceovers tell us what they’re really thinking. The current cast is excellent at playing grounded characters like these, and pretty much everyone in this sketch did a terrific job. Chris Redd was particularly funny as a party guest who finds himself accidentally flirting with his cousin.

Saturday Night Live with Elon Musk review: Wario

This was… really something. I’m still not sure whether I loved it or I hated it, but no matter what, it made for watchable TV. Maybe this sketch was so dumb that it was good, or maybe it was just plain dumb. I honestly don’t know. What I will say is that the whole cast really seemed to be enjoying themselves, especially Cecily Strong as she banged her judge’s gavel on a “? block” from the Mario universe. I’m always a sucker for a sketch where the cast is having fun.

Final thoughts on Saturday Night Live with Elon Musk

  • I found the monologue to be surprisingly funny. While it was clearly meant to promote Musk’s business ventures and puff his ego, it was still chock full of jokes and structured very well. That’s particularly impressive considering that Musk is not a performer of any kind and his delivery was noticeably stilted.
  • The Ooli Show starring Chloe Fineman wasn’t exactly my cup of tea. It just felt weird for weird’s sake without a strong comedic foundation. That being said, it did have some great jokes. At one point Fineman’s character suddenly announces that it’s “time for a quick hat”, and she proceeds to put a tiny hat on her head, much to the delight of Mikey Day’s sidekick character and much to the chagrin of guest Frances McDormand (played by Kate McKinnon). The production design for this sketch also deserves major credit. The set was really fun to look at and Fineman’s costume was hilarious.
  • Baby Yoda on Weekend Update is terrific. This episode had a lot of sketches that were just utterly stupid (mostly in a good way), and Baby Yoda is the perfect example of a delightfully stupid joke.
  • I’m personally getting tired of Chad, but I can still admit that he’s a good character and Pete Davidson plays him well. This iteration of Chad was certainly an upgrade over Chad’s earlier appearance this season (in a sketch with Adele).

Related Story. SNL announces the final hosts of season 46. light

What did you think of Elon Musk’s performance on Saturday Night Live? Were there any great jokes or sketches I forgot to mention? Where does this episode rank among season 46’s episodes? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.