When Kristen Wiig left SNL last year, Mick Jagger hosted her final episode and gave the Bridesmaids star, writer, and producer an emotional send-off. Wiig was exuberant for her return last night and seemed to be having a blast with former castmates Bill Hader and Fred Armisen, holding back the laughter during several sketches. She was given a warm homecoming with open arms, several friends popped by to lend a funny, and musical guest Vampire Weekend performed “Diane Young” and “Unbelievers.” We wondered if the episode would rely on Wiig’s best-of, and for the most part it did – not unlike Zach Galifianakis’ comfortable (as comfy as things get with him), middle-of-the-road moments last week. The frustration with Wiig’s speedy return to the series is twofold.
By the end of her run, the writers had exhausted her zaniness by including her in nearly every sketch. Characters like mischievous schoolgirl Gilly wore out their welcome — and thankfully SNL had enough sense to limit her appearance to a brief cameo last night. But with an extremely mediocre season, in which the show’s more interesting players have been sorely underused, the Wiig reunion felt somewhat necessary. We’ve never been happier to glimpse a set of freakishly small hands.
When is the Kate McKinnon and Kristen Wiig show going to air? We’d totally watch that. The ladies were in synch as McKinnon played Wiig’s sweet, but annoying mom, commenting on her daughter’s “sad apartment” and oversharing about watching porn with dad.
Ah, the glorious, schizophrenic pathos of Target Lady. We knew we’d be seeing her, and she was weirder than ever. None of Wiig’s characters evoke such alienation and pitiableness as the woman “on the clock and ready to rock.” She talked about her adult, outdoor slide and discovered that not all lesbians wear vests. Later, she gave out winks for free and confessed her hoarder tendencies (duh). “I like to cut out the models’ eyes [from her magazines] and put them on my eyelids so when I sleep my birds never feel alone and ghosts think I’m awake.”
Lawrence Welk: Summer
It wasn’t the wackiest Welk sketch, but we can’t resist that high forehead and those doll hands. Armisen’s dirty “finger lakes” joke during the intro provided some welcome awkwardness.
New Disney Show
We’re a little torn on the Aw Nuts! Mom’s a Ghost sketch. Way to be late for a joke SNL, but something about Wiig’s goofy mug peering out at us while creeping about was funny.
A nice grand guignol moment made funnier by Aidy Bryant’s reactions.
C-SPAN Benghazi Hearing Cold Open
I dread the political/newsy cold opens each week. This one combined the Jodi Arias murder trial, Cleveland kidnapping, and Senate hearing on Benghazi.
The Californians: Karina Returns
Too long, but it was fun to see Wiig on the brink of cracking up. Thank goodness for Maya Rudolph.
Weekend Update: Garth and Kat – Mother’s Day
Unprepared music duo Garth and Kat are still unprepared, and I’m still not laughing.