Some Saturday Night Live hosts kind of suck. While they’re talented actors, musicians, or performers, their talents just don’t lend themselves to the comedy style of live sketch, or maybe they’re just terrible to work with (as David Spade and Lorne Michaels will attest to). But on the flip-side, there are some SNL hosts who might as well have been cast members, if it weren’t for their amazing success in other areas. They keep getting invited back because their characters are some of the most memorable.
You can’t have a list of such hosts without starting with Justin Timberlake. The man can do pretty much anything, and he excels whenever he and Jimmy Fallon are on camera together, whether it’s the Barry Gibb Talk Show or advocating putting your dick in a box. No other host has won an Emmy as a guest actor in a comedy series, and SNL player Bobby Moynihan says he might as well just join the cast list.
Christopher Walken is another Saturday Night Live favorite. While his love of the cowbell is what sticks out to most people when they think about his time on the show, he’s also starred in numerous recurrences of “The Continental.” Another member of the “Five-Timer’s Club,” Steve Martin, will forever be remembered for his half of the “wild and crazy” Festrunk brothers, and he’s been a host a total of 15 times. That number is only beaten by the Schweddy Ball-slinger himself, Alec Baldwin, whose host count stands at 16 since 1990. John Goodman is another SNL favorite with 13 gigs under his belt, even though he auditioned for the cast in 1980 and didn’t get the job.
I know I’d certainly watch the show more if all those mega-stars joined the cast. That’s a realistic goal, right?