While much of the country practices social distancing in an effort to help stop the spread of the coronavirus, the cast of Saturday Night Live decided to get creative to bring some much-needed laughs into fans' homes. During the experimental episode, which aired on Saturday, April 11, the cast members brought viewers into their own homes with a quarantined show that poked fun at everything from Zoom meetings to at-home workouts — and it was comedic gold. These tweets about Saturday Night Live At Home show that viewers were so here for the unexpected new format, especially an unexpected cameo from recovered coronavirus patient Tom Hanks.
Hanks, who was one of the first celebrities to be diagnosed with COVID-19 along with wife Rita Wilson, addressed the show's fans in a surprise monologue from home as the "host" of the new episode. The actor, who'd shaved his head for a movie role, told viewers from his kitchen, "It is good to be here, though it also very weird to be here hosting Saturday Night Live at home. It is a strange time to try and be funny, but trying to be funny is SNL's whole thing."
The actor then took a comedic turn as he described recovering from the virus in Australia and having to learn to take his temperature in Celsius. He quipped that he quickly learned that 36 was good but 38 was bad, "like Hollywood treats female actresses."
Following Hanks' monologue, viewers were then treated to SNL mainstays like Kate McKinnon, Pete Davidson, Colin Jost, Alec Baldwin, and Larry David as the cast members and guests made light of all the things that could go wrong during a Zoom meeting, parodied rap songs, and delivered the show's trademark political humor with sketches about Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. Michael Che, who lost his grandmother to coronavirus one week earlier, was also a part of the skits.
The cast mixed both timely and political elements, showing Baldwin and McKinnon reprising their roles as President Donald Trump and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. McKinnon as Ginsburg had plenty of "ginsburns" and quarantine-approved workout tips under her belt, hilariously using Q-tips and batteries to post a thirst trap for Dr. Fauci. Meanwhile, David reprised his role as unsuccessful Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, complaining that he was "always a bridesmaid, never the Democratic nominee."
Pete Davidson got rave reviews as he decided to allay his quarantine boredom by making a music video (directed by his mom) at his home. The comedian-turned-rapper chanted "This is a Drake song" over and over during the filming before sharing another parody later in the show of a rapper with only $2,000 to his name.
The comedic lines were a welcome distraction for viewers in light of the coronavirus pandemic, and fans took to Twitter to applaud the cast members for managing to pull the experimental episode off from their homes and with none of their usual equipment.
Several viewers also admitted that they couldn't help trying to sneak a glimpse of the actors' homes.
Only time will tell whether the cast of SNL decides to keep the quarantine episodes going, but it's safe to say their inaugural one was a big success.