‘SNL’ revives ‘MacGruber’, in Will Forte’s hosting debut

Former ‘Saturday Night Live’ cast member Will Forte returned to host the show for the first time on Saturday, enlisting some familiar faces to reprise his MacGruber persona on a night when James Austin Johnson’s rambling Donald Trump appeared. in the cold open.

Kate McKinnon kicked off the NBC show by parodying Fox News host Laura Ingraham, in a cold open that spoofed Trump, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, tennis star Novak Djokovic and conservative author Candace Owens.

“The Ingraham Angle,” sponsored by hummus substitute Paula Dean and a COVID-19 test that still comes back negative — even if you have it, begins with McKinnon grumbling about President Joe Biden’s first year in office.

“Inflation is out of control, gas is $19 a gallon and the Green M&M was canceled just for being a bitch,” she deadpanned.

She then welcomed Aidy Bryant as Cruz, who pledged to degrade to stay in Trump’s good graces.

Former Saturday Night Live cast member Will Forte returned to the show showing a familiar face in his role as MacGruber.
Saturday Night Live

“My beard is like January 6: shocking at first, but it’s been normalized,” the fake Texas senator said.

Pete Davidson played anti-vaccination athlete Djokovic, who was asked about his COVID-19-related expulsion from the Australian Open.

“I never thought I would hear myself using the sending-off in a bad way, but what happened?” asked the fake Ingraham, drooling at the Serb’s accented response.

“I’m a fan of your sport, because in tennis love is bad,” she deadpanned.

McKinnon’s character also adored Owens, played by Ego Nwodim.

“It’s my greatest honor to fight for African Americans, no matter how many times they ask me to stop,” Nwodim said.

Johnson-as-Trump then delivered a free association rant that touched on booster shots, John Mayer, “How I Met Your Father”, Jason Momoa, Prada, and his ambition for another run for the White House in 2024 .

Left to right —Damiano David and Ethan Torchio of musical guest Måneskin, host Will Forte, Kenan Thompson, Thomas Raggi and Victoria De Angelis pose for a group photo on the set of Saturday Night Live on January 20, 2022.
Left to right – Damiano David and Ethan Torchio, host Will Forte, Kenan Thompson, Thomas Raggi and Victoria De Angelis pose for a group photo on the set of Saturday Night Live on January 20, 2022.
Rosalind O’Connor/NBC

In his monologue, Forte, 51, who left “SNL” in 2010, complained that he hadn’t been asked to host sooner, unlike contemporaries Kristen Wiig, Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, Seth Myers, Adam Samberg and John Mulaney – a writer on the show who had taken center stage four times.

“Save the best for last, right? Save the best for last! said Forte. “But tonight it’s all about me,” he promised, as Wiig came out to steal his thunder, getting “more applause.”

Executive producer Lorne Michaels then appeared with next week’s guest host Willem Dafoe, saying there had been a mistake and that he intended to introduce the drama actor on Saturday, but autocorrect from his phone mistakenly sent “Will”.

Several pre-recorded MacGruber tracks reunited Forte with Wiig and Ryan Phillipe as assistants to the MacGyver-esque character. MacGruber was more interested in burning masks and using unauthorized COVID-19 treatments than disabling bombs. He also disguised himself as a “QAnon shaman” and confused the terms “asymptomatic” and “anti-Semitic”.

“I feel like you’ve gone down some sort of rabbit hole of alt-right misinformation,” Phillipe said, as their hideout exploded.

Will Forte, reunited with Kristen Wiig and Ryan Phillipe, was more interested in burning masks and using unauthorized COVID-19 treatments than disabling bombs, playing his role as MacGruber.
Will Forte, reunited with Kristen Wiig and Ryan Phillipe, was more interested in burning masks and using unauthorized COVID-19 treatments than disabling bombs, playing his role as MacGruber.
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In a Nickelodeon game show spoof, Forte played a sadistic host who reveled in insisting that Bryant (playing a little girl) dig a miniature flag into an oversized spinning cream pie.

“The whipped cream is adversity and the flag is your unrealized potential,” he told her.

Kenan Thompson’s pretentious pipe-smoking classic film critic has returned with a new take on Ingrid Bergman’s classic “Gaslight,” as Forte and Wiig update scenes from the 1944 psychological thriller.

Mikey Day and Heidi Gardner played a couple who arranged a threesome with a sleazy Forte character, only to find the odd one out was only interested in Gardner.

In his monologue, Will Forte, who left
In his monologue, Will Forte, who left “SNL” in 2010, complained that he hadn’t been asked to host sooner, unlike contemporaries like Kristen Wiig and Fred Armisen.
Saturday Night Live

“Remember it’s a trio, not a me,” the creepy character said much to Gardner’s delight and Day’s dismay.

In “Weekend Update,” Davidson joined Colin Jost in poking fun at their new purchase — a decommissioned Staten Island ferry they planned to turn into a playhouse.

“Even the mayor tweeted about it, which is how I found out we had a new mayor,” Davidson said. “What happened to Bloomberg?”

Sarah Sherman also got a lot of laughs when she accused Jost of being an elitist perv who was out of touch with struggling young comedians.

Additional “update” jokes poked fun at Biden’s two-hour press conference (“that’s how long it took to list everything that was wrong”) and others recent events.

“America’s oldest person has died at the age of 115. This is a powerful reminder to always test your cocaine for fentanyl,” fake co-anchor Michael Che said.

Forte and Wiig teamed up again to play a hokey country and western duo whose songs became increasingly edgy as their infomercial continued.

Italian glam rockers Måneskin energized Studio 8H with lively renditions of the Four Seasons song “I’m Begging” and their hit “I Wanna Be Your Slave.”

“SNL” was slated to return to the airwaves next week with Dafoe on hosting duties and musical guest Katy Perry rounding out the 12th episode of the season.