Bill Hader plays swan song on 'SNL'

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Verne Gay Verne Gay

Gay is the television critic.

Everyone knew Bill Hader -- aka Stefon, "James Carville," "Keith Morrison," Alien Greg, and lots of game show hosts -- was leaving "Saturday Night Live" after eight largely terrific seasons.

And he did. As Stefon, almost getting married to Anderson Cooper on the 38th season finale.

But what about Jason Sudeikis and Fred Armisen? (Seth Meyers is being deposed from "Weekend Update" next February, when he moves next door to Studio 6B, or wherever "Late Night with Seth Meyers" will originate from.)

The possibility of a mass guy exodus presented itself early yesterday morning when Armisen's recently created alter-ego punk rocker, Ian Rubbish, appeared on stage with "friends" like the Sex Pistols'Steve Jones, Sonic Youth'sKim Gordon, Dinosaur Jr.'sJ Mascis,Aimee Mann and Carrie Brownstein;she's his co-star in "Portlandia," and former lead singer of Sleater-Kinney.

Sudeikis was on drums. Hader was on bass.

Armisen/Rubbish sang, "it's been a lovely day . . ."

Meaning: I'm outta here. Maybe that dude on drums too.

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NBC declined to comment on whether this was Sudeikis' and Armisen's swan song.

For good reason: The media would have a field day.

Imagine, "SNL's" four biggest stars, Sudeikis, Meyers, Armisen and Hader gone in an instant, or almost. (Seth's around for half of the 39th season.)

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But let us ponder the possibilities if this does indeed happen. Perhaps the door swings open for more female cast members in this still mostly male club. Kate McKinnon, a featured player, will likely become a full cast member. Maybe even underused Jay Pharoah will get more airtime.

So not all is lost, "SNL" fans. This is a show that seems to know how to course-correct.

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