Saturday Night Live Returns

Saturday Night Live Returns

Eden Aulov

Autumn is a stressful season for people around the world- it’s the beginning of a new school year, a shift in the air, and the lounging laziness of summer, sprinkled so languishly across the months of June, July and August, fading away, sending the chilling droplets of work spilling across our paling faces. However, with the pixelating summer also comes another season of a New York staple- Saturday Night Live.

I discovered Saturday Night Live at the young, tender age of eleven years old. Newly acquainted with my device, I cruised through YouTube consuming meaningless content, forgotten over the course of the years passed. Without meaning to, I stumbled upon an SNL skit and instantly fell in love with the atmosphere created between the animated cast. Warm, cheeky, and closely-knit, I fell in love with the castmates, old and new, and low blows of jokes and satirical sketches the show had to offer. Now, four years later, watching the last night’s episode of Saturday Night Live is a part of my every-Sunday routine, whether it be the morning when I wake up or midnight when I impatiently refresh my page every so often to catch an uploaded sketch as soon as possible (such was the case when Jason Sudeikis, a former member of the cast and Ted Lasso creator came back to host last weekend).

How does Saturday Night Live work, though? “LIVE FROM NEW YORK, IT’S SATURDAY NIGHT!” Make up the words of the excited screams of cast members every Saturday at 11:30 p.m. in the first sketch of the evening, referred to as the Cold Open. Saturday Night Live is completely live, with quick set and costume changes during advertisements between sketches (short, amusing comedy scenes/ performances). SNL also includes a Weekend Update segment, in which cast members and head writers Colin Jost and Michael Che ridicule current issues, no matter how small or large in a cliche news anchor inspired way. Wildly popular, this segment is an especially beloved part of every SNL episode. Running for 47 seasons, the show is hosted by a different celebrity each episode and is considered a prestigious invitation on account of the stars that have hosted in the past, the likes of which being Kim Kardashian West, Eddie Murphy, Will Ferrell, Alec Baldwin, Justin Timberlake, Drew Barrymore, Scarlett Johansson, Adam Driver, and many, many more. Additionally, SNL has also kick-started the careers of numerous stars such as Will Ferrell, Eddie Murphy, Jimmy Fallon, Andy Samberg, Seth Myers, Amy Poehler, Jason Sudeikis, Chris Farley, Bill Murray, and more. 

As for current castmates, SNL “veterans,” as fans like to call them, remain consistently beloved by viewers. Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, Kenan Thompson, and Cecily Strong are some of them, creating unforgettable moments every season through their unique humor and varied ranges. However, newer cast members are also incredibly comedically gifted, with Pete Davidson’s self-deprecating humor on Weekend Update causing him to remain beloved by viewers, Bowen Yang’s emotional and emphatic humor creating delicious sketches, and Mikey Day’s impressions and comedic timing rivaling even the veterans’ talent on the SNL screen. Most of all, though, it’s apparent how close-knit and appreciative of each other the cast is, making Saturday Night Live truly feel like a family for spectators every weekend. 

Each Saturday, viewers feel at home on the familiar stage of the SNL studio, able to take a break from the daily stress of their lives by being entertained by silly humor. This American television institution creates an atmosphere of warmth unattainable by any other recent shows, and continues to provide viewers with decades of laughter. Like many other fans, I am overjoyed that Saturday Night has returned to a new season, and from the looks of the first four episodes, cannot wait for further ones to air and embrace us into the arms of our heartwarming TV family once again.