Maroon 5 lead singer and coach of “The Voice,” Adam Levine hosted Saturday Night Live last night. NBC tries to slip in a promotional host every few weeks because, at this point, “Saturday Night Live” is the most relevant program the network has besides Sunday Night Football, and NBC could use all the cross-promotion it can get (WHY HASN’T ALISON BRIE BEEN ASKED TO HOST?) When asked to sing or remove his shirt, Levine was a capable host. The other 94 percent of the show, however, he was ineffectual and clothed. As for legitimate highlights, sketches you may need to know should last night’s “SNL” come up on your Facebook feed, there are only four, and two of them weren’t even very funny.
Sopranos High was a take on The CW’s Carrie Diaries, featuring the cast of “The Sopranos” in an 80s-set high school. The premise had potential and the impressions were spot-on, but the writing was weak.
Levine’s opening monologue featured three celebrity cameos — Andy Samberg, Cameron Diaz, and Jerry Seinfeld, as “The Voice”-like coaches — which says about all you need to know about “SNL’s” faith in Levine to carry the show alone. The monologue wasn’t actually funny or resonant or even mildly amusing, but hey! Celebrities!
There was a reason Samberg was among the monologue cameos: He and The Lonely Island crew were back with the first official Digital Short since Samberg left the show, a take on YOLO that was a better-sounding song than it was actually funny. Levine does have great talent with melodies, and the Kendrick Lamar rap was bang-on.
The commercial for Rosetta Stone wasn’t half bad, either, featuring a joke that was totally worth all of the 45 seconds devoted to it.
There was nothing else from the show that was particularly amusing. But there were some low points we can discuss. For instance, Firehouse Incident was the second sketch in the show that featured an over-the-top gay stereotype, and while it didn’t succeed, Hader thought it was funny enough to slightly break character. At this point, I think Hader breaks character on purpose in an attempt to salvage otherwise bad sketches.
There was a Catfish sketch that tackled a legitimately resonant topic, though the sketch itself lacked bite.
Finally, I don’t hate Bobby Moynihan’s Janet character, who in this sketch tries to sleep with Adam Levine. In fact, Moynihan used to be one of my least favorite cast members, but he’s grown on me over the years. The Janet character, in fact, teeters on the edge of amusing.