How Kate McKinnon Has Become An Essential ‘SNL’ Cast Member

01.06.15 5 years ago 20 Comments
Today’s is Kate McKinnon’s 31st birthday, and in her three seasons on Saturday Night Live  in the wake of Kristen Wiig, Andy Samberg, and Bill Hader’s departures — she has become one of the show’s most important cast members.

McKinnon is the first openly lesbian cast member in the show’s history, and she’s managed to avoid being labeled The Gay Cast Member, while also not shying away from the distinction. She’s done impressions of Jane Lynch and Ellen DeGeneres on the show, but the only time she directly referenced her sexuality was in a sketch called “Dyke Fats,” in which McKinnon and Aidy Bryant played two detectives in a 70s style cop show.

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The sketch’s punchline came from when host Louis CK addressed the pair as “Dyke And Fats,” and was quickly scolded. The pair can call themselves that, but he cannot. It was a funny sketch that found a clever way to address McKinnon’s sexuality as well as Bryant’s weight. Plus, the spoofing of old-school cop shows was spot-on.

Really, though, McKinnon has shined in countless capacities since joining the cast. Her funniest recurring role is arguably Olya Povlatsky, a Russian women whose life is perpetually miserable. The character became one of the show’s more reliable Update correspondents once they could no longer rely on Stefon and Aunt Linda.

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