The Best and Worst of Last Night’s ‘SNL’ with Daniel Radcliffe


Last night, Daniel Radcliffe hosted a mixed-bag episode of Saturday Night Live with musical guest Lana Del Rey in her late night television debut. Del Rey’s performance was rather lackluster — both of her songs were performed standing in one place, in the same dress (a lack of costume change is very unusual for SNL musical guests), in the same tone of voice. Radcliffe, on the other hand, was relatively great: he did seem nervous and stumbly half the time, but he more than made up for it by being energetic and clearly game for anything. Click through to watch clips of the best and worst sketches of the night, and let us know if we left off your favorite in the comments.

The Best:

Daniel Radcliffe’s Monologue

As might have been expected, as soon as the applause died down, someone yelled out “Harry Potter!” to which a smiling Radcliffe responded, “Indeed.” He went on to talk about his Harry Potter legacy, (making fun of adult fans jut a little), and all was fine and charming, if a little self-aware, right up until the cast of Jersey Shore Harry Potter hit the stage. At which point it became hilarious. Now that is a skit we really do want to see.

You Can Do Anything!

Radcliffe shone as a Chinese calligrapher/Irish dancer on a talk show that “celebrates the incredibly high self-esteem of the YouTube generation.” The joke, of course, is obvious, but at least it was topical and the sketch played out with an above-average amount of fun and panache.

Weekend Update: Casey Anthony’s Dog

Um, this makes the ‘best’ list based on the mere fact that they got Daniel Radcliffe into that costume, which is by far the most ridiculous one we’ve seen all season. He also pulls off the role with surprising deadpan deftness — “dogs can be sarcastic too, Seth, it’s not just for cats.”

The Worst:

Delaware Fellas

This skit — an advertisement for a budget version of Broadway’s Jersey Boys — was completely uninspired, so bad that it’s not even available on Hulu or NBC for Sunday-morning viewing. Yep.

Spin the Bottle

There was nothing wrong with this skit, per se — just that there was one gross-out joke (Daniel Radcliffe has to kiss a homeless guy) and they repeated it over and over again. The end was a little bit funny, but not the strongest pre-taped skit we’ve seen.

Hogwarts 2020

We wish they had tried something a little more out there — Harry Potter still hanging around high school reliving his glory days is a pretty ho-hum premise, as far as we’re concerned. Basically it was just way too middle of the road: if it had been reverent and full of in-jokes, we would have liked it, and if it had been completely skewering and Harry Potter was doing heroin, well, we would probably have liked that too.