TV

‘SNL’ Scorecard: Scarlett Johansson Joins The Five-Timers Club

Often, when someone is good at hosting SNL, you’ll hear things like, “Scarlett Johansson could be in the cast.” Sometimes that’s true and sometimes that’s not. There are hosts that the show can prop up on its shoulders and utilize his or her best strengths. And then there are hosts like Johansson, who can do the little things you might not notice that carry sketches. Take a sketch like “Zoo Pornographer” (which was fine), it’s Johansson who has the most dialogue. She’s not doing anything particularly funny, but she’s the main character. She’s at the heart of the sketch, making it work and you might not even notice because she’s not just delivering a punchline. There are not many hosts who can play this part. Most hosts would get Mikey Day’s character where he or she is just reacting. It was similar in “Translator,” once again Johansson is the main character with the most dialogue who drives the sketch, even though the punchlines go to Beck Bennett voicing a dog. Anyway, this is a pretty unique quality as a host.

Here is your last Scorecard of March. There won’t be another until April 8th, which seems crazy. The schedule this season has been very unusual.

Sketch of the Night

“A Sketch for the Women” Everything about this is perfect. It reminded me a little bit of The Lonely Island’s “Equal Rights” from Popstar in the way it skews its protagonists. The empathy Kyle Mooney and Beck Bennett show toward what women have to endure plays so well in the fact they didn’t write the women in the sketch any lines. Mooney pointing at the women in the cast, then explaining that they each have a story to tell, then continuing to talk anyway was very pointed. It was a masterclass of skewering the “outrage on the behalf of others” without listening to the people you’re outraged for. It reminded me of Twitter. (Never go on Twitter.)

Score: 9.0

Other Highlights

“Translator” My girlfriend and I have a theory that one of our cats would have voted for Trump. He’s not a sexist or a Russian spy (that we know of), but sometimes he can be a bully to our other cat. But it’s one of those jokes that after we say it, we usually stop talking about it pretty quickly because I don’t want that to become how I actually think of this cat. In reality, it’s most likely he doesn’t even know who Donald Trump is and would base any vote in a presidential election on who promised him the most tuna. Having said that, my nightmare is this sketch. That some sort of translating machine came along and he actually could tell us that he’s a Trump supporter. This really is horrifying. I don’t want a machine like this to exist. People are difficult enough, I couldn’t imagine having to reason with a pet over stuff like this.

Score: 8.2

“Complicit” I think this might be the first time I’ve ever ranked a sketch “high” based on the title alone. “Complicit” is such a great word that sounds like both a stern condemnation and a fragrance. My pet peeve lately has been the puff pieces on how Ivanka Trump fights for liberal causes inside the administration. And the thing is, she’s probably not an awful person, but she doesn’t seem to be having much of an effect, which is why we are even talking about it. Her whole brand now is, “Well, I tried!” Then she smiles and attends a gala. Anyway, “complicit,” yes.

Score: 7.3

“Cold Open: Alien Attack” The subtle best part of this sketch is when Kyle Mooney asks out loud, in a distressed voice, if Trump has business dealings on Zorblatt 9. If aliens started to attack us tomorrow, I swear that thought would probably cross my mind. Does Trump know these aliens? What’s he getting out of this invasion? Is Trump an alien? This is the world we live in now, where even the purity of a hostile alien invasion is muddied up because of Trump’s corruption.

Score: 6.5

***

Average Overall Score for this Show: 6.92

· Dave Chappelle 7.44
· Kristen Stewart 7.38
· Tom Hanks 7.35
· Lin-Manuel Miranda 6.99
· Margot Robbie 6.95
· Scarlett Johansson 6.92
· Alec Baldwin 6.89
· Aziz Ansari 6.82
· Octavia Spencer 6.77
· Emma Stone 6.46
· Casey Affleck 6.37
· John Cena 6.17
· Kristen Wiig 6.12
· Felicity Jones 5.97
· Benedict Cumberbatch 5.73
· Emily Blunt 5.45

You can contact Mike Ryan directly on Twitter.

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