Saturday Night Live Report Card: Season 42, Episode 15 - Octavia Spencer

2017 Oscar nominee and Hidden Figures (not Hidden Fences) star Octavia Spencer hosts SNL tonight after a few weeks off (these breaks are killing me). Let's hope it's a good one!

Cold Open: Jeff Sessions Gump
This was a true delight. Make McKinnon finally gave a a true impression of Jeff Sessions, with great references to Kellyanne Conway's couch scandal (something SNL made excellent reference to all night) and Sessions speaking to Russia (as well as other Trump administration members doing the same). Ultimately, it was Octavia Spencer coming out as her character from The Help (complete with a poop pie for the Attorney General) that really brought the laughs. I can't give it a perfect score though, because I'm honestly getting sick of Vladimir Putin popping up everywhere.
Score: 9.5/10
Grade: A

Octavia Spencer Monologue
SNL has been getting better at monologues in 2017. They're never my favorite part of the show, and they usually aren't that funny, but I thought this was funny. The "Hidden Fence Light" and the awards show references were the best part of an all around solid monologue.
Score: 8/10
Grade: B

Republican Movie Trailer
This was really funny, and really true. Almost too true. Every time they said "TBA", I laughed. The Paul Ryan joke was great, probably my favorite part of the sketch. I would totally watch this movie starring probably Bradley Whitford about Not Paul Ryan.
Score: 9.5/10
Grade: A

Drug Company Hearing
I loved seeing Sasheer Zamata in this, reminding us that she's still a part of this cast that is still in sketches from time to time (though not often enough). I laughed at this, far too much. It was very funny, and it made a great use of Octavia Spencer. Even though she wasn't in it very much, I still really enjoyed Leslie Jones in this sketch
Score: 9/10
Grade: A-

Girl At a Bar
This was another very funny digital short, and it's probably pretty accurate. Every person was a liar that just wanted to go on a date. Each time, it got more ridiculous, eventually ending with the friend character played by Cecily Strong doing the same thing as the guys, which was very funny.
Score: 9.5/10
Grade: A

I'm a sucker for impressions, and that was pretty much all that this sketch was. Even so, it was very enjoyable and I loved Villaseñor's impressions the most, particularly her impressions of past and present cast members Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig, and Julia Louis-Dreyfus. It was also great to see  Octavia Spencer do some solid impressions of her own.
Score: 9.5/10
Grade: A

I didn't love this, and I didn't laugh, but it was fine. It was better than some stuff that would come up later in the show, but there was nothing particularly memorable about it.
Score: 7.5/10
Grade: B-

Weekend Update
This was a good Update, complete with some good characters and strong jokes. My favorite was the Don Jr and Eric part, which was very funny and something I'd like to see become a recurring part of Update. And as always, Laura Parsons was fun and enjoyable.
Score: 9/10
Grade: A-

Sticky Bun
This was pretty good, with the cast trying their hardest to make this work. It didn't quite work for me like I was hoping for, and some stuff didn't work, but I still liked it and thought Mikey Day was great in it. And I liked the conclusion, in which they all got hired despite being terrible at the job.
Score: 8/10
Grade: B

Wine Bar
This is when things started to go south. This wasn't funny, interesting, or good. It was just meh. It was fine, and wasn't the worst of the show, but it was close. It was incredibly generic, that less than a day after watching it I can barely remember a thing about it. Even Octavia Spencer couldn't make Jode work.
Score: 6/10
Grade: C-

The Chocolate Man
Most SNL episodes have a "WTF was that ?" sketch. This was that sketch. It was so bad, so boring, so disturbing that nothing could have made it work. I hated it. And it made no sense. How did this even air?
Score: 3.5/10
Grade: F

Spencer's Gifts
Octavia Spencer really looked like she had fun with this, but I unfortunately did not. I liked the little gags, like the I Love to Fart mug and the glasses she had on. Unfortunately, that was the only truly funny part of this relatively dull sketch that didn't really have a satisfying conclusion.
Score: 6.5/10
Grade: C+

This was a pretty good episode. It wasn't as good as last week, and the sketches at the end of the night were pretty bad, but the beginning was strong. I don't really get the hate that this episode is getting.
Grade: B
Pass or Fail: Pass
MVP of the Week: Melissa Villaseñor
Sketch of the Night: Cold Open: Jeff Sessions Gump

Worst of the Night: The Chocolate Man

Top 5 Hosts of the Season:
1) Tom Hanks

2) Dave Chappelle
3) Alec Baldwin

4) Kristen Stewart
5) Aziz Ansari

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