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January 14, 2018

Saturday Night Live opened on the set of MSNBC's Morning Joe this week, with Mika Brzezinski (Kate McKinnon) and Joe Scarborough (Alex Moffat) talking about President Trump and Michael Wolff's controversial new book, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House. SNL alum Fred Armisen appeared as Wolff, joined by ousted White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon, revealed under his Grim Reaper hood to be played by Bill Murray.

The real life Bannon's quotes in Fire and Fury led to a statement from Trump declaring his former ally has "lost his mind," but Murray's Bannon is pretty optimistic about "the Bannon dynasty," and also his forthcoming line of "wrinkled barn jackets called, 'Frumpers, for guys.'"

Watch the full sketch — including an appearance by Leslie Jones' Oprah and plenty of swipes at the Morning Joe hosts — below. Bonnie Kristian

December 17, 2017

Saturday Night Live's President Trump (Alec Baldwin) is excited to trim the White House tree now that he has declared an end to hostilities in the "War on Christmas," and this year, the first family is decorating on a theme. Joined by the first lady, some of his children, and various administration staff, Trump adorns his "tree of shame" with ornaments featuring the faces of "all the haters and losers [he] destroyed this year."

The haters and losers are mostly former members of the Trump White House, but fired FBI Director James Comey and former Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore are on the tree, too. Elf on the Shelf Attorney General Jeff Sessions (Kate McKinnon) shows up on the mantel to help with the tree trimming and wish everyone a merry Christmas, because "everybody is gonna get away with everything!"

Watch the full sketch below. Bonnie Kristian

December 10, 2017

After coming under criticism for being too slow to address sexual misconduct allegations against media figures like producer Harvey Weinstein, Saturday Night Live has been making up for lost time. The latest episode sees the subject pop up in the cold open, a Weekend Update segment, and a sketch called "Sexual Harassment Charlie."

The scene is an office workplace, where two newly fired employees — James Franco's CFO Doug and Kenan Thompson's elderly front desk man, Charlie — are apologizing to their female coworkers for past sexual harassment. Doug apologizes for inappropriate nicknames and compliments, while Charlie is sorry for making comments like, "If I was 11 years younger, I'd put you in a large sack, throw you in the trunk of my Eldorado, drive you to my sister's house with a big old medical bed, crack open the windows, and show you a good old time for 28 minutes."

Where Doug's apologies are met with renewed disgust, the women wave away Charlie's vivid retelling of his far more serious misconduct as "Charlie being Charlie." The skit's interrogation of inconsistencies in how we respond to harassment ends with an unexpected twist. Watch the whole thing below. Bonnie Kristian

December 10, 2017

Saturday Night Live's mall Santa Claus (Kenan Thompson) and his elf sidekick (Kate McKinnon) face some tough questions in the cold open from children who are more interested in benefiting from Santa's ethical omniscience than from his gift-giving capacities.

After a couple present requests, a kid named Tyler cuts right to the point: "What did Al Franken do?" "Well, Tyler," Santa answers after a failed attempt to shove this question over to the elf, "I guess you could say that Al Franken is on Santa's naughty list this year." "And what about Roy Moore? Which list is he on?" Tyler responds. "It's not really a list," McKinnon's elf interjects. "It's more of a registry."

Even Santa's standard threat of coal in the stocking isn't what it used to be for news-savvy kids. As little Jessica scoffs, "We both know coal is a dying industry." Watch the full sketch below. Bonnie Kristian

December 3, 2017

Saturday Night Live opened with Alec Baldwin's President Trump hiding away from the White House Christmas party — where Kate McKinnon's Kellyanne Conway "got so drunk [she] told the truth" — because the investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn has him in "pouty baby mode." Left alone in the Oval Office, Trump is soon visited by a Jacob Marley-esque Michael Flynn, "the Ghost of Witness Flipped."

Flynn is merely the first Christmas Carol-inspired apparition to pay President Scrooge a visit, culminating in an appearance from the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come, a positively gleeful Hillary Rodham Clinton who has received "the greatest Christmas gift of all: sexual gratification in the form of [Trump's] slow demise." Watch the full skit below. Bonnie Kristian

November 21, 2017

Thirty-six women staffers of NBC's Saturday Night Live who worked with Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) on the show published a letter Tuesday to "offer solidarity in support" of the alum, who is accused of kissing one woman without her consent and taking a picture groping her while she slept, and by another woman of groping her while posing for a photo at a fair.

The "SNL women," including original cast members Jane Curtin and Laraine Newman, said that "what Al did was stupid and foolish" but that "in our experience, we know Al as a devoted and dedicated family man, a wonderful comedic performer, and an honorable public servant."

The letter was not received well by some. Elle's culture editor Estelle Tang tweeted: "Congrats on this harmful, distracting, useless statement, @NBCSNL. It's LITERALLY 'family men,' 'comedians,' & 'honorable public servants' being revealed as harassers. Progressive men can mistreat women too, and it's dangerous to imply otherwise."

SNL actually addressed the Franken scandal over the weekend. "I know this photo looks bad, but remember: It also is bad," said Colin Jost in a Weekend Update segment on the subject. "And, sure, this was taken before he ran for public office, but it was also taken after he was a sophomore in high school. It's pretty hard to be like, 'Oh, come on. He didn't know any better. He was only 55.'"

Read the full SNL statement below. Jeva Lange

November 19, 2017

Saturday Night Live took a thinly veiled swipe at overly aggressive policing tactics with a sketch in which host Chance the Rapper and fellow minority citizens of Gotham ask Beck Bennett's Bruce Wayne to let Batman know he needs to "cool it down on our neighborhoods" because it "seems like he's in our neighborhood, all the time."

"You know how Batman is tough on crime?" Chance asks. "Somebody's gotta do something about him. I mean, he broke my best friend's jaw in two places and all he did was steal a TV. That's excessive!" Then, Chance adds, Batman left his friend "hanging for like 30 minutes 30 stories up by a gargoyle by his underwear." (The underwear thing, it turns out, is among Batman's favorite crime-fighting techniques.)

Watch the full skit below, and read The Week's Emily L. Hauser on the horrifying pervasiveness of police brutality. Bonnie Kristian

November 19, 2017

Saturday Night Live censured SNL alum Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) over a reporter's allegation that in 2006 he kissed her without her consent and took a picture groping her while she slept. "I know this photo looks bad, but remember: It also is bad," said Colin Jost in a Weekend Update segment on the subject. "And, sure, this was taken before he ran for public office, but it was also taken after he was a sophomore in high school. It's pretty hard to be like, 'Oh, come on. He didn't know any better. He was only 55.'"

Michael Che chimed in to note President Trump's selective condemnation of Franken, a Democrat, while refraining from comparable comment about Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore.

Watch the full clip below, and read The Week's Peter Weber on what would happen in a Senate ethics investigation of Franken's conduct, which the senator invited in his second apology statement. Bonnie Kristian

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