Jimmy Fallon / Harry Styles, S42-E18

John and Steve—along with their special guest, comedian Eric Schwartz—discuss Jimmy Fallon's comedy-free monologue party, in-studio Travolta switcharoos, the reinvention of Harry Styles as a solo artist, the polarizing comedy stylings of Bruce Chandling, and the millennial whoop.

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Notes

  • Eric Schwartz is a comedian, actor, voiceover artist, musician and innovative content creator. Connect with Eric at: ericschwartzlive.com
  • Best moment: Fallon plays both Travoltas, Film extra makes the shot & Fat catchy hook
  • Best sketch: Turtle Shirt, Take Me Back & Before the Show
  • MVP: Harry Styles, Vanessa Bayer & Cecily Strong
  • Rating: 7 (great/typical/typical)

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Louis C.K. / The Chainsmokers, S42-E17

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Trump supporter mental gymnastics, Louie's beautiful doe-eyes, the stupidity of Twitter activism, Steve's intense hatred of Mikey Day, Dodo's fatal lack of judgement, Tig Notaro's Clown Service, and lovable hairy creatures.

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Notes

  • Best moment: Dodo the clown accepts his fate
  • Best sketch: Birthday Clown
  • MVP: Louis C.K.
  • Rating: 9 (great/classic)

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Vintage: Richard Pryor / Gil Scott-Heron, S1-E7

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John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Richard Pryor's masterful stand-up, Futaba's origin story, the spiritual predecessor of "White Like Me", inspired commercial parodies, the enduring relevance of "Word Association", and Weekend Update's long tradition of mad libs features.

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Notes

  • Best moment: Chevy's racial epithet
  • Best sketch: Spud Beer & Samurai Hotel
  • MVP: Richard Pryor
  • Rating: 6 (typical)

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Scarlett Johansson / Lorde, S42-E16

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Leslie Jones holding her own, Scarlett Johansson's rogue hair tassel, the reasonableness of Max the dog, being floored by Lorde, Al Franken's stunning return, and the polarizing act of adding sidekicks to recurring sketches.

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Notes

  • Best moment: Mikey Day's "O" face & Dog helmet ad-lib
  • Best sketch: Zoo Pornographer & Funeral Service
  • MVP: Mikey Day & Scarlett Johansson
  • Rating: 10 (classic)

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Octavia Spencer / Father John Misty, S42-E15

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss when cast members launch from SNL, Kate McKinnon as living site gag, low-rent bus transitions, Leslie Jones line-flub drinking games, Alex Moffat's fan-service/general awesomeness, Melissa doing Kate, and Beck's unsettling use of rouge.

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Notes

  • Full audio of comedian and impressionist Matthew Hawkins discussing his main-stage audition at SNL.
  • Best moment: Alex's Capri Sun face-mash & Melissa's Kate impression
  • Best sketch: Zoo-Opolis Voice Actors & Jeff Sessions Gump Cold Open
  • MVP: Alex Moffat
  • Rating: 7 (great/typical)

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Alec Baldwin / Ed Sheeran, S42-E14

John and his guest, Matthew Hawkins, discuss the fury of Melissa McCarthy, Alec Baldwin's cool Batman voice, Alex Moffat's shades of David Spade, optimal meat positioning and ideal tentpole placement (that's what she said), and Sasheer Zamata's worthy take on Beyoncé.

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Notes

  • Matthew Hawkins is a comedian and impressionist hailing from Toronto Ontario. Connect with Matt on Twitter: @theMimicHawkins
  • Full audio of Andy Hoglund's interview with Chris Kattan.
  • Best moment: Spicer's podium rampage & Sasheer's chocolate disgust
  • Best sketch: Sean Spicer Press Cold Open & Leslie Wants to Play Trump
  • MVP: Alec Baldwin
  • Rating: 7 (great/typical)

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Kristen Stewart / Alessia Cara, S42-E13

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Alec Baldwin as record-setting host, Kristen Stewart's fidgety triumph, SNL keeping pace with immigration policy, Vanessa Bayer finding her Totino, the genius of Melissa McCarthy, Weekend Update dumpster fires, and deciphering movie-world rules.

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Notes

  • YouTube video of "Great Day" digital short by The Lonely Island.
  • Best moment: Spicer's podium ram & Outside look at Totino affair
  • Best sketch: Sean Spicer Press Conference
  • MVP: Melissa McCarthy
  • Rating: 8 (great)

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Aziz Ansari / Big Sean, S42-E12

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Katie Rich breaking the Mafia creed, divisive burlesque parody, Weekend Update on fire, friend-zone hitting home, Melissa Villaseñor's breakout dirty-talk, heavy-handed off-key Obama love-fests, and Saturday Night Live's polarizing politics.

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Notes

  • Best moment: Michelle Obama "Hmmm." callback & Che's bad-boy flirt.
  • Best sketch: Attorney Ad & Kellyanne Conway
  • MVP: Melissa Villaseñor & Michael Che
  • Rating: 8 (great)

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Felicity Jones / Sturgill Simpson, S42-E11

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Robin Duke’s thoughts on Tony Rosato, Julio Torres in the news, Felicity Jones’ adorable incompetence, the sexism of Steve Martin, millennial suffrage, Sturgill Simpson’s standout performance, and self-important celebrities.

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Notes

  • Best moments: Kenan Thompson losing face & Sturgill Simpson performs
  • Best sketches: Donald Trump Press Conference Cold-Open & Susan B. Anthony
  • MVP: Beck Bennett
  • Rating: 4 (weak)

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Interview: Robin Duke

John and his guest, Andy Hoglund, interview SNL and SCTV alumnus Robin Duke. Robin recounts her early days as a performer at Second City, her stint on SCTV, and her 4-year run on SNL. Robin also discusses her post-SNL film and TV career, and relates insights gleaned from working with Catherine O’Hara, Martin Short, Joe Flaherty, Eddie Murphy, Robin Williams, Harold Ramis, Bill Murray, Jay Baruchel and Mark McKinney.

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Notes

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Casey Affleck / Chance the Rapper, S42-E10

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Maren Morris as a legitimate country artist, Casey Affleck's stoic nature, a new take on Trump, poignant social observations, the grandeur of Chance the Rapper, and Michael Rapaport as a character trope.

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Notes

  • NPR interview with Maren Morris discussing her transition from songwriter to performer.
  • Video of Beck Bennett and new Duck Tales cast singing classic theme song.
  • Best moments: Gay robot walk & Leslie as Salt-N-Pepa
  • Best sketch: Robot Presentation & Hillary Actually
  • MVPs: Kate McKinnon & Beck Bennett
  • Rating: 6 (typical)

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John Cena / Maren Morris, S42-E9

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss wrestling as theatre, John Cena as the next Dwayne Johnson, Aidy Bryant's next move, the smoothness of Bryan Cranston, the shadow of Farewell Mr. Bunting, and technically challenging sketches.

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Notes

  • Best moments: The Waddler & Walter White
  • Best sketch: Science Presentation
  • MVPs: Mikey Day & John Cena
  • Rating: 4 (weak)

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Emma Stone / Shawn Mendes, S42-E8

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Kate McKinnon's next move, yet more Trump tweets, incompetent improv troupes, addition as showbiz algebra, vocal racial ambiguity, Leslie Jones' unveiled metaphor, and fleek turkey necks.

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Notes

  • Best moments: Bobby's football fumble & Boy's father's wince
  • Best sketches: Wells for Boys & Leslie Jones on Weekend Update
  • MVPs: Kenan Thompson & Leslie Jones
  • Rating: 6 (typical)

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Kristen Wiig / The xx, S42-E7

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss Trump tweets, SNL returning to form, living vicariously through featured players, CNN pundit-bots, Pete Davidson coming out swinging, and Bobby Moynihan as most valuable utility player.

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Notes

  • Best moments: Trump/Romney handshake & Clown balloon reveal
  • Best sketches: Surprise Lady & Anderson Cooper 360
  • MVPs: Cecily Strong & Bobby Moynihan
  • Rating: 6 (typical)

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Dave Chappelle / A Tribe Called Quest, S42-E6

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss solemn cold opens, Dave Chappelle's executive decision, when sketches comment on themself, Sheila Sovage running out of steam, Lorne's feelings on Kyle's virginity, and Leslie's milk squirting gun.

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Notes

  • Best moments: Dave Chappelle's nightclub shooting joke & Kate McKinnon performs "Hallelujah"
  • Best sketches: The Walking Dead & Dave Chappelle's monologue
  • MVPs: Dave Chappelle & Kate McKinnon
  • Rating: 9 (classic/great)

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Benedict Cumberbatch / Solange, S42-E5

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss SNL getting out the vote, the legacy of Apple's "1984" ad, Aidy Bryant playing dead, SNL and the liberal media conspiracy, Colin's mystery crotch-bump, and winning over Beck Bennett.

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Notes

  • Best moments: Church Lady on Weekend Update & Aidy Bryant playing dead
  • Best sketch: Why is Benedict Cumberbatch Hot?
  • MVPs: Beck Bennett & Aidy Bryant
  • Rating: 7 (great/typical)

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Tom Hanks / Lady Gaga, S42-E4

John and his guest, Steve Finn, discuss legendary host qualifications, SNL as spectacle, Black Jeopardy's refreshing take on race relations, committed performances saving lacklustre sketches, and determining the real Melissa Villaseñor.

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Notes

  • Best moments: Bobby Moynihan turns the hose on A Girl's Halloween & Black Jeopardy handshake
  • Best sketch: Black Jeopardy
  • MVPs: Kate McKinnon & Cecily Strong
  • Rating: 7 (typical/great)

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