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'SNL' Will (Inexplicably) Return in 8 Days With a Hell of a Host (That Many Have Never Heard Of)

By Dustin Rowles | TV | January 7, 2022 |

By Dustin Rowles | TV | January 7, 2022 |


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The last time SNL was scheduled to air a new episode, on December 18th, they had to send nearly the entire cast and crew home on the day of the show. That left host Paul Rudd to handle emcee duties along with Tom Hanks, Tina Fey, and only two actual cast members, Michael Che and Kenan Thompson. I don’t know what the truth is, but the rumor is that nearly everyone in the damn cast had COVID (except for Colin Jost, who was, ahem, “getting work done.”)

It’s been almost three weeks now, and since then, COVID cases have exploded nationwide. We’re now averaging over 600,000 cases a day. What better time to … bring SNL back? Now is the perfect time, obviously! Jimmy Fallon and Seth Meyers have already got COVID, so clearly they’re trying to gain herd immunity at 30 Rock. It’s all part of Biden’s new Normalize Omicron initiative!

And what better way to extend herd immunity to the rest of New York’s creative world than by bringing in, as host, a Broadway star! The first host on the episode back will be Tony nominee Ariana DeBose, who honestly is amazing. I haven’t seen her in West Side Story yet (though, I hear very good things), but I did see her in Schmigadoon, and she blew everyone in that cast away, which is all the more impressive when you consider that cast included not just Cecily Strong and Keegan-Michael Key, but Alan Cumming, Kristin Chenoweth, and Jane Krakowski. She is fantastic.

She will be joined on January 15th (again, just 8 days away) by musical guest rapper Roddy Ricch.

The good news, I suppose, is that after three weeks of explosive growth thanks to Omicron, cases in New York City do seem to be plateauing, so maybe it will all burn out by the 15th (spoiler: It will not all burn out). SNL may want to have Tom Hanks on hand, just in case.