Like the past few seasons, Saturday Night Live‘s 44th iteration has produced a growing collection of hit-or-miss episodes. Some, like Adam Driver and Jonah Hill‘s guest-hosted entries, have largely proven to be the exception to the rule. Otherwise, the remainder has been chock-full of fantastic sketches and moments that were cushioned by forgettable jokes and filler. Thankfully, this weekend’s figurehead, Claire Foy, had no trouble proving that sometimes the now-typical SNL episode just needs the right host to save it — mostly.
Best known for her dramatic work in television shows like Netflix’s The Crown and films like First Man, Foy doesn’t immediately strike one as the comedic type. Yet like Liev Schrieber and Christopher Walken before her, the award-winning British actress was quick to point out just how funny she could be, given the right material and the best sketch partners. Her curt opening monologue, which came in at just under three minutes, is a good example of this, but more on that below.
It’s also nice to see someone like Foy hosting SNL because, to be completely frank, she’s not what Driver, Hill, Schreiber, Seth Meyers and Steve Carell are — a man. Indeed, she joins Awkwafina as one of this season’s two non-white-male hosts so far. Jason Momoa and Matt Damon will close out 2018 as the hosts for the December 8th and 15th episodes, and yes, the former’s Hawaiian and Native American descent helps differentiate him from the rest, but after nine episodes so far, season 44 will only boast two women as hosts.
Anyways, here are the key moments from last night’s show.
A simple monologue
Sometimes, the best SNL monologues are the shortest ones — the ones where, instead of transforming into a small proto-sketch or a preview of a stand-up comedian’s in-progress set, only a few minutes go by before the real fireworks begin. Foy’s brief foray into the wide world of Brexit, President Donald Trump’s America and whether or not Queen Elizabeth II has actually watched The Crown. It contained all of the self-referential material viewers have come to expect from SNL hosts, and nothing more.