Miley Cyrus was host of Saturday Night Live Season 41 premiere on a night with much political catching up to do, and a cameo by Hillary Clinton to boot. But what of the ever-provocative pop music superstar, in her second time around? Check out a roundup of reviews from the television critics and see video highlights right here!
It was two years ago that Miley Cyrus last grace the famed stage of Studio 8H as host and musical guest. And so much has happened since then. For weeks, she was all that anyone wanted to talk about, after her outrageous twerking and such at the MTV VMAs. Ah, but this was nothing compared to this year’s Presidential race with Donald Trump now taking over the airways to the delight of some and the chagrin of others.
The episode was more about SNL getting caught up on political madness than on waiting for FTC-fine-worthy moments from a pop music superstar.
The worst kept secret for this week was Hillary Clinton’s cameo appearance. And yes, we got that. We got the former Secretary of State turned Democratic Presidential frontrunner portraying Val the bartender. And as such, doing what we’d like to think bartenders do best, offering advice. Thus we got the real Clinton and Kate McKinnon’s Clinton on screen together as the real one mocked Donald Trump and later together they sang a duet. Yes, as is many times the case, the mashup of politics and entertainment goes viral.
Truthfully, Clinton has gotten rave reviews, even as critics ever-so-gently point out that perhaps she needs to work on not being so Teleprompter dependent. On the other hand, they agree that Taran Killam’s needs work. After all, we’ve been waiting for months for SNL to skewer Trump in some way, and meet the challenge of an over-the-top skit for a larger than life candidate. Either that or a cameo by the billionaire candidate himself.
The episode had its strong points and weak points as is typical of the 90-minute odyssey that is SNL. Critics have had their say and here’s a roundup.
“… Cyrus was given early season hosting duties last year too and it wasn’t all that impressive. It was more of the same this season as she sort of swooped in and didn’t do much more than that. She was her usual Miley self, but that’s something that even millennials are growing tired of, as she’s such a caricature of what a millennial is that she’s become a fringe member of her own generation…..” — Fansided
“….Things got off to a limp start with a weak Donald Trump sketch that found Cecily Strong playing Melania and Taran Killam relying mostly on a pouty bottom lip and an outdated wig to channel The Donald. […] Maybe he can take lessons from Hillary Rodham Clinton, who delivered a killer Trump impression while also handily winning the night’s viral video award by playing bartender Val, serving Kate McKinnon‘s Hillary and gamely taking some gentle criticism about her delayed support for gay marriage. …. –The Wrap
“… On the season premiere of ‘SNL,’ Taran Killam’s Donald Trump needed work but Hillary Clinton’s Hillary Clinton was terrific. […] With an entire summer to prepare for lambasting the Republican frontrunner and an entire summer for Taran Killam to practice his impersonation, the result was a slew of predictable non-jokes about Trump’s bombast, his hair and Cecily Strong doing a globe-spanning accent as Melania….” — Hollywood Reporter
“…. . Cyrus’ performances on SNL partake of the self-promotional energy of her public persona to the extent that she’s always herself, a deadening quality in an SNL host. It’s not that she’s bad actress, it’s that she’s not really an actress. It’s like when you watch on old Muppet Show—the famous guests are all undeniably talented, but only about half are really committed to doing that musical number with Piggy. …..” — AV Club
“…The problem in the cold-open was, as mentioned, how to do something that has never been done before on another show; trust us, that is challenging thanks to all of the spoofs already out there. This is why bringing Melania Trump (Cecily Strong) was a super-smart choice to bring in someone to call out some of Trump’s comments. This was a pretty perfect way to start the show, but where was Hillary Clinton during most of this? Remember when she was meant to play a big part? Maybe plans changed. ….” — CarterMatt
“….But while The Artist Formerly Known as Hannah Montana proved to be solid, if not entirely spectacular, in her third hosting effort, former Secretary of State and current Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton busted through partisan lines and proved pretty damn funny playing a bartender in a meta sketch opposite Kate McKinnon playing her own high-strung caricature of… Hillary Clinton…..” — TV Line
Well, that premiere of season 41 has now come and gone and passed into television history. This being the election season, it’s just getting started and we hope that impersonators and writers can meet the challenge of the spectacle that is the Presidential election Watch highlights below from last night’s show with Miley Cyrus hosting and Hillary Clinton tending bar!
Cold Open ‘Donald Trump’ and ‘Melania Trump’
Miley Cyrus Monologue
Abilify for Candidates
Hillary Clinton – bartender
Pictures: PR Photos