“Saturday Night Live” kicked off its final episode before its brief hiatus by tackling President Joe Biden’s response to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and NFL player Tom Brady’s retirement.
The episode was hosted by actor Willem Dafoe and featured musical guest Katy Perry. The episode also included a “Weekend Update” commentary from former quarterback Peyton Manning, who wasn’t interested in discussing football.
Here are some of the notable sketches from the 12th episode of “Saturday Night Live” Season 47.
The NBC comedy sketch show began the night by taking aim at the reports of Brady’s retirement and the Russia-Ukraine conflict by featuring President Biden, played by James Austin Johnson, receiving a briefing in the Oval Office.
Biden’s aides told him they received reports that Russia has already invaded Ukraine, but the intelligence came “from the same people who told us Tom Brady will retire, so take it with a grain of salt.”
The aides also showed Biden some of the propaganda airing on Russian airwaves, which featured NFL player Aaron Rodgers, played by Pete Davidson. The commercial was a parody of State Farm insurance ads. However, unlike the typical jingle, Davidson said, “like a good neighbor, Russia is there.”
After watching the propaganda, the Biden administration realized the solution to stopping Russia from invading Ukraine was to get a mean girl, played by Chloe Fineman, to bully Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“I think your generation can learn a lot from mine. Like, we don’t believe in drone strikes. We believe in breaking down our enemies psychologically,” Fineman said.
“That’s why I am going to DM Putin and say, ‘Oh my god. I liked your outfit the other day. Was that Old Navy?’… Already he’s spiraling…In three weeks he will have completely lost his mind.”
When Fineman was asked if she has done this before, she replied, “Does the name ‘Giuliani’ ring a bell?”
Manning stopped by “Weekend Update” to discuss the divisional round of playoffs games from last week. However, Manning was too excited about the Netflix show “Emily in Paris” to focus on football.
“It sounds like all the teams did a great job. Lots of passing and all the touchdowns were in the end zone,” Manning said.
When co-anchor Colin Jost asked if Manning watched any of the games, the former MVP admitted he was a bit distracted.
“Well, I planned to, but I had an hour to kill before the first game and just for fun, I put on the first episode of ‘Emily In Paris’ Season 2, and I watched the entire season straight through,” Manning said.
“Oh my God, Colin, this show has everything, romance, adventure, sensuality, culture, a fresh take on feminism— finally. Not to mention, a culinary tapestry so rich I can only describe it as food porn,” he said.
When Jost attempted to get Manning to discuss the reports about Brady’s retirement, he once again reverted back to the Netflix series. “Yeah, I’m not sure it’s true, I think it’s probably just speculation,” he said.
“But if it were me, I probably would retire if it gave me more time to watch ‘Emily in Paris.’ But I really think for Tom right now, it’s just a tough decision between balancing his career and relationships…sort of like Emily.”
At one point, Manning began wearing a red beret while continuing to discuss the series. “Sure, watching football was the safe thing to do. That’s what everyone expected me to do, but if I’m learned anything from Emily, it’s to follow my passions and always be true to myself,” Manning said.
“The French have a saying, ‘Parlez-vous francais’ which means, ‘You do you, girl.’”
“Now I’m Up”
“SNL” took the difficulty of falling to sleep to a new level with a musical sketch called, “Now I’m Up.” The sketch featured an interpretation of what it feels like to toss and turn all night without getting a wink of sleep.
Some of the obstacles the people in the skit go through include body spasms experienced by Chris Redd and Kenan Thompson searching on WebMD after discovering a mysterious lump on his neck.
Each situation causes the men to pop up out of their sleep and sing the chorus, “Now I’m up, up, up, up, up.”
Redd eventually decides to watch an infomercial featuring Dafoe selling a Samurai Air Fryer and telling his viewer that they will never fall back asleep.
“And just when you’re about to fall asleep, you wake up in a cold sweat because you remembered something embarrassing you did back in high school,” Dafoe sings.
Determined to fall asleep, Redd finds an eye mask and earplugs, but then he remembers someday, he is going to die. “Now I’m up, up, up, up, up,” he sings before the song ends.
“SNL” will return on Feb. 26. Actor John Mulaney will host with musical guest LCD Soundsystem.
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