Saturday Night Live: Season 46 in review

Musical guest Megan Thee Stallion and host Chris Rock (Photo by: Rosalind O'Connor/NBC)
Musical guest Megan Thee Stallion and host Chris Rock (Photo by: Rosalind O'Connor/NBC) /
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John Mulaney, Saturday Night Live
John Mulaney and Lorne Michaels (Photo by Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images for NRDC) /

Saturday Night Live season 46 episode 5: “John Mulaney/The Strokes

Mulaney is, perhaps, the perfect SNL host. He’s a versatile sketch actor, capable of playing straight men and wackier characters. He’s a great stand-up comedian, so his monologue is always stellar. And he’s a brilliant writer, so he improves the quality of the sketches whenever he’s around. That’s probably why he hosted on two separate occasions in 2020 (February and October), making him one of the very few people to have hosted SNL twice in the same year.

Most memorable sketch: “Strollin’ To The Polls” is a great song, and the whole cast is utterly delightful in this one.

Saturday Night Live season 46 episode 6: “Dave Chappelle/Foo Fighters

Just like he did in 2016, Dave Chappelle hosted the episode after election day. However, he wasn’t actually in very many sketches, which is surprising considering he’s a highly-regarded sketch actor, and he even won an Emmy for his performance the last time he hosted SNL.

This was an unprecedented sixth new episode in a row for Saturday Night Live, and so the show took a bit of a hiatus after this one.

Most memorable sketch: At the time, “Hailstorm” was my favorite, and I thought it would be an instant classic. But the sketch I come back to again and again has turned out to be “Take Me Back” starring Beck Bennett and Ego Nwodim.

Saturday Night Live season 46 episode 7: “Jason Bateman/Morgan Wallen

This was a night marked by many returns, some long-awaited and some not so much. Cecily Strong returned to Studio 8H after missing the first six episodes while she was off filming another show in Canada. Jason Bateman returned as host for the first time in 15 years (the last time he was there was to promote season three of Arrested Development). And Morgan Wallen was given the chance to come back too.

Most memorable sketch: “The Christmas Conversation” will be a good one to show kids someday in the future when they ask what Christmas during COVID-19 was like.

Saturday Night Live season 46 episode 8: “Timothée Chalamet/Bruce Springsteen & the E-Street Band

Timothée Chalamet was clearly game for anything, and he ended up playing plenty of weird characters on the show, including a TikTok rapper, a bad-boy COVID particle, and Harry Styles. He also got to play Beck Bennett’s son on three different occasions, and honestly, I’m jealous.

Most memorable sketch: “Tiny Horse” was the only sketch I could have picked here. Whether you loved it or hated it, “Tiny Horse” was one of the most unforgettable sketches Saturday Night Live has done in a long time.

Saturday Night Live season 46 episode 9: “Kristen Wiig/Dua Lipa

Kristen Wiig is one of the greatest SNL cast members of all time, so I had high hopes going into this episode. It didn’t live up to my expectations, especially because I felt like Kristen Wiig went underused, but the show still had its great moments. Wiig came back as fan-favorite recurring character Mindy Elise Grayson from Secret Word, and Chris Redd killed it with a truly incredible Smokey Robinson impression.

Most memorable sketch: Kristen Wiig’s deadpan delivery in “Christmas Morning” is hilarious.