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On the eve of his momentous transition from 12:30 to 11:30, Jimmy Fallon is about to get plenty of attention, and it begins Dec. 21, with his second-time host stint on "Saturday Night Live." Justin Timberlake is musical guest, and you already know about the long and memorable Fallon/Timberlake association. (Oh, and Kings of Leon is musical guest on the 14th.)
Here's the line from...Read more »
Impresarios who run important shows know when there's an elephant in the room, or in the case of "Saturday Night Live," on Studio 8H's proscenium.
So Lorne Michaels wasted no time Saturday in tackling the intruder. In a cold open that had guest host Kerry Washington play a pair of very famous black women because "Kenan didn't want to," "Saturday Night Live" not only addressed the one issue that's seemed to dog it all season -- no black female cast members -- but also turned a cold open around on the show itself. That doesn't happen often and it's certainly rare that an open is even particularly funny, as this one actually was. (And clever.)
Here it is, if you missed it. Newsday app readers may want to go over to Newsday.com/tvzone if you want to see Kerry Washington demonstrate that she has a missed career opportunity -- as an Oprah impersonator.
Kerry Washington's hosting close up on "Saturday Night Live" arrives this weekend, but first, this rite of passage.
(Newsday app viewers, please head over to Newsday.com/tvzone for the clip.)
Can't keep Miley (Cyrus) away from "Saturday Night Live," which she hosted (proficiently) a few weeks ago. For Edward Norton's first outing and first monologue, she offered some tips, as did Alec Baldwin... who holds the record as "SNL's" host-with-the-most appearances (16), having surpassed Steve Martin (15) a couple of years ago (ah, if only Martin found his way into this monologue too...)
If you missed (Newsday app readers, please check this out at Newsday.com/tvzone):
Kerry Washington will finally get her closeup on "Saturday Night Live," on November 2, show announced a little earlier today. She will (what else) host. No other details from "SNL" but none others really needed: Washington has emerged a major star on a major show, "Scandal,' and this represents the fruits of success (in show business.) Yes, there has been some noise about "SNL" not recruiting black female comics this season, but this booking would seem to be unconnected: Washington, after all, is hardly a "comic." Meanwhile, Eminem is musical guest, his sixth "SNL" outing.
This is on our trending-worldwide-about-to-go-viral radar: Miley Cyrus performing an a capella version of "We Can't Stop" with the Roots and Jimmy Fallon. Word of reassurance: It's better than the one she performed with Robin Thicke.
(By the way, what NBC show hasn't Miley been on the last few days? This isn't a quiz or a trick question -- I do believe she's been on every single show on the NBC air. She is busy.)
App/mobile readers watch here: http://bit.ly/160DHLp
Miley Cyrus' "Saturday Night Live" outing was mostly notable for what it was not -- no twerking, no Sinead O'Connor jabs, no harm, and no foul. She did what she came to do -- perform. And perform well she did. This hosting gig will go down as a savvy career move, as opposed to further evidence that childhood stardom leads inevitably to whatever Lindsay Lohan has become.
Meanwhile, there was damage to be controlled, even if the recent VMA performance and "Wrecking Ball" video were part of The Plan -- the visceral if clownishly degrading demolition of any remnant of Hannah Montana. "She's been murdered," joked Cyrus in her monologue. And how.
But Cyrus badly needed a course correction, because it's one thing to become a pop culture sensation who out-Madonnas Madonna, and another to become a laughingstock or proof of what O'Connor warned against.
As such, Cyrus expertly handled every skit, every character handed to her -- from the send-up of herself in the cold open to the send-up of Michele Bachmann in probably the only bit that will have a life beyond the weekend.
"SNL" was about adjusting her new image, and selling a fourth studio album -- "Bangerz" -- and her performance of two cuts from that couldn't have been farther from those already seared -- or scarred -- onto the cultural consciousness. "Wrecking Ball" was almost a quiet dirge.
But her performance of the (now infamous) club pop anthem "We Can't Stop" indicated that Cyrus (and handlers) had overplayed their hand -- foam or otherwise -- at the VMAs. It was understated, underplayed and underwhelming, a stripped down bluesy/folksy version that had no heat, or severed fingers oozing pink blood, or elongated tongues. Just a song quietly sung along to the accompaniment of acoustic guitars.
Maybe Miley has realized that Sinead O'Connor is on to something.
Miley Cyrus will host this weekend's "Saturday Night Live," which means jokes about tongues and twerking and corrupting the nation's youth -- and in fact, said jokes are already here, via her "SNL" promos with Taran Killam, which arrived last night.
She will also double as musical guest. Bruce Willis is host next week -- he will not double as musical guest.
"Saturday Night Live" opened it's 39th season with the full realization that this won't be the 39th but in one obvious sense the first with a mostly new cast, new characters, new challenges.
And it wasted absolutely no time in integrating the newcomers into the cold open, Tina Fey's monologue and most of the sketches. But the big moments, as expected, went to established stars,...Read more »
Tina Fey is hosting the 39th season premiere of "Saturday Night Live," and -- per tradition -- the host must cut a series of promotions that will a.) Promise a good show b.) Promote the musical guest, Arcade Fire c.) Offer an amusing diversion in themselves d.) be topical e.) Get posted on a multitude of websites, like this one.
Check, check, check and check. Oh right, and check.
References to "Breaking Bad" and wardrobe malfunctions... take it away: (And as usual, app readers please go to newsday.com/tvzone for the video.)