The most recent new episode of “SNL,” which aired on May 22, was hosted by “The Queen’s Gambit” star Anya Taylor-Joy, with Lil Nas X as the musical guest. The episode’s cold open was less a sketch and more of a comedy routine from the cast, which spent the opening segment cracking jokes about how insane the past year had been with the pandemic making a major impact on just about everything.
There wasn’t much in the way of celebrity cameos in the new year, and, for now, cast member Alex Moffat will continue to play Joe Biden. He played the role for a second time on April 3 in a sketch that also saw Martin Short make a surprise appearance as Kamala Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff.
The reception for Moffat’s Biden was not exactly enthusiastic, so it’s not hugely surprising that they haven’t used it much. At this point it seems likely that Moffat is done playing Biden on “SNL,” and NBC will try to nab a big name for the role next season.
Speaking of which, season 46 of “SNL” has finally wrapped up, and so there isn’t a new episode for June 5. We won’t see any more new episodes until, assuming NBC schedules the season 47 premiere the way they usually do, probably September 25 or October 2.
NBC will air one “SNL” rerun this week, at the standard 11:30 p.m. time slot — normally they’d do two reruns on off-weeks, but the NHL playoffs will take over one of those time slots this week. This week’s rerun is the season 46 episode that was hosted by “SNL” alum Maya Rudolph. Jack Harlow was the musical guest for that one.
While it’s not an election year anymore, somehow the tense political situation in the U.S. managed to ramp up from the fever pitch early in 2021. And, well, it was tough for “SNL” tough to pass up having Aidy Bryant play Ted Cruz as often as possible, which the show keeps doing.
While the sketch show has certainly had a whiff of “just trying to return to normalcy” in the new year, politics remained at the core of the cultural discourse. And that Matt Gaetz story hasn’t gone anywhere.
Perhaps the biggest splash of season 46 was the addition of Jim Carrey as the show’s resident celebrity Joe Biden during the election cycle. But Carrey dropped out of the role after Trump lost, and “SNL” has now twice had Moffat play the part. Moffat’s Biden has been met with a pretty tepid response both from the studio audience and viewers at home, but that’s to be expected after only big stars have played Biden on SNL for years.
It’s been a strange transition out of the Trump era for “SNL,” which has adopted a softer tone the last couple months. For example, the show did three separate COVID-19 game show sketches in 2021, two of which were cold open sketches.