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'SNL' Was Hosted This Week By a Strong, Handsome White Guy

By Dustin Rowles | Saturday Night Live | March 8, 2015 |

By Dustin Rowles | Saturday Night Live | March 8, 2015 |

The running joke in nearly every sketch in the Chris Hemsworth hosted SNL this week was that Hemsworth is very handsome, very strong, and also white. It was one of those episodes that almost felt like it was being hosted by an athlete, but one of the good ones — like Peyton Manning. It wasn’t a good show, and Hemsworth is not a very gifted comedian (or actor, to be honest), but he’s so goddamn likable that the mediocrity on display was fairly easy to swallow. There were no great sketches in the episode, but no outright stinkers, either. I think everything fell within the 4-6.5/10 range.

Hillary Clinton Cold Open
Hillary Clinton (Kate McKinnon) says she has nothing to hide in her emails and that this scandal won’t stop her from becoming president, if she decides to run. I am going to like this Presidential election cycle so long as McKinnon continues to play Clinton with a notes of desperation and sociopathy. She’s so good, even if the sketch was only decent. (Score: 6/10)

Chris Hemsworth Monologue
Chris Hemsworth celebrates hosting SNL with his brothers, Liam, Luke and Callum (Kenan Thompson), and fields questions from the audience. The joke here is that the Hemsworth brothers are handsome and white, except for that other brother played by Kenan Thompson, who is neither handsome nor white. To be honest, it was hard to pay attention with all that handsomeness on stage. (Score: 5/10)

American Express Ad
The joke here is literally: It’s so hard out there for strong, sexy, handsome white guys (with Australian accents). It took Hemsworth literally days to hit it big. (Score: 6/10)

Brother 2 Brother
Matty (Chris Hemsworth) and Marky (Taran Killam) are twin brothers but they’re far from identical. See, one of them is kind of a pud, and one of them is strong, white, and handsome Chris Hemsworth. (Score: 4/10)

Empire Promo
You know what’s missing from Fox’s surging Empire? A white guy. Who is handsome and strong. That is literally the entire joke of this sketch. How would things be different if they threw a white guy into the mix. (Note for those who don’t watch Empire: Most of the scenes are straight out of the show.) (Score: 4/10)

To save themselves, the crew of a spaceship (Chris Hemsworth, Cecily Strong, Kenan Thompson, Sasheer Zamata) must sacrifice their chicken captain. The joke, of course, is that the strong, handsome white guy is in love with the chicken (the absurdity of it actually kind of works). (Score: 6.5/10)

The Iggy Azalea Show

Iggy Azalea (Kate McKinnon) welcomes Azealia Banks (Sasheer Zamata) to the show and shares hip-hop tips with the help of her cousin Rafty (Chris Hemsworth). This sketch plays on the feud between Azealia Banks — who thinks that Iggy Azalea is co-oping hip-hop culture — by adding another white guy into the mix. Who is also handsome. It’s not a particularly good sketch, but McKinnon totally crushes it as Iggy Azalea. (Score: 5/10)

Weekend Update — I would say that “Weekend Update” this week can best be described as genial, amusing, and not at all painful to watch. That’s about as high praise as I’ve given the Che/Jost team. (Score: 6/10)

Weekend Update: Leslie Jones on Dating in New York — There’s something about this “Weekend Update” segment that works, though it wouldn’t work with anyone else other than Leslie Jones. In fact, the way Jones kind of bumbles her lines works in her favor. (Score: 6/10)
Weekend Update: Girl You Wish You Hadn’t Started a Conversation with at a Party on Boko Haram — It’s the same joke, but it still has some life left in it. (Score: 6/10)

Avengers News Report
Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Iron Man (Taran Killam), Bruce Banner (Pete Davidson), Nick Fury (Jay Pharoah) and Captain America (Beck Bennett) celebrate defeating Ultron on live TV. The joke here is that The Avengers celebrate victory over a foe just like a sports team might celebrate a victory of a rival. Hemsworth nails the bro-y, handsome white guy who is half in the bag and screaming on live TV. (Score: 5/10)

Movie Set A former director (Kenan Thompson) of The Jeffersons keeps giving his actors (Kate McKinnon, Chris Hemsworth) sitcom-style direction. This should be an awful sketch, and it is, but somehow, Hemsworth — handsome, strong white guy — making goofy faces is endearingly amusing. (Score: 5/10)
Reality House

Things get tense in the house when Eric (Chris Hemsworth) and Chase (Beck Bennett) decide to order dinner together but Brian (Kyle Mooney) wants to cook. It’s one of those Kyle Mooney sketches that plays on reality-show tropes, but it’s not nearly as witty as Kyle Mooney thinks it is. (Score: 4/10)

Porn Stars: Dolce & Gabbana
The former porn stars (Vanessa Bayer, Cecily Strong) advertise a new fragrance from Dolce & Gabbana alongside Dong Juan De Dark Hole (Chris Hemsworth). It’s funny because a strong, handsome white guy had his penis replaced with that of a Hispanic man’s (no, really. It is pretty funny). This recurring sketch is starting to lose some steam, but there’s still something left in the tank. (Score: 6.5/10)

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.