Can you smell what Saturday Night Live is cooking… for The Rock’s fourth hosting gig!?
It’s Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, so he needs no real introduction. Suffice it say he hosted to promote Furious 7 (or, timely enough, Wrestlemania). And yes, it’s surprisingly his fourth time. The Five-Timers Club isn’t far off!
So let’s break this down. People like numbered scores, so I’ve chosen to rate every sketch at 0, 1/2, or 1 point. A sketch not worth watching at all receives a 0, a sketch that doesn’t stand out but didn’t totally flop gets a 1/2, and a sketch that does its job of entertaining and delivering a few laughs will earn 1 point. A standout sketch that goes above and beyond will receive the normal point plus 1 bonus point. Cool? Cool. Let’s talk about it!
Air Date: 3/28/15
Host: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson
Musical Guest: George Ezra
The Rock Obama Cold Open
We all knew this was coming, especially since The Rock Obama was the standout moment of Rock’s last time hosting. A brilliant twist with Leslie Jones, though. 1 point
I’ve said it several times already, but this is Rock’s fourth time in the host chair. We know he’s talented, so it hurts to see him relegated to rote musical numbers. At least we’ve only gotten a few musi-logues this season, and on the positive side, there were some decent lines here. 1/2 point
This hits the same note as the brilliant ISIS sketch with Dakota Johnson — funny because it’s mostly true. The ill-conceived Starbucks race stint actually happened, so satirizing it with a car repair franchise is exactly what comedians should do. 1 point
WWE Promo Shoot
Well, this was timely, eh? “Koko B. Careful” and the “Junkyard Mutt” facing off is a great starting point. From there, the slow devolution into Koko destroying the Mutt’s personal life was expertly written. The character breaks between takes drove it home. 1 point
New Disney Movie
So apparently Taran Killam has a killer Vin Diesel impression. Who knew? This all-too-real action trailer is the sketch that will be (and is already being) passed around on Facebook. “Deerly…” 1 point + bonus point
Another great premise, this time driven home by The Rock’s perfect douche bag and Cecily Strong’s hilarious Cockney girl. Having Keenan Thompson switch to the same level of douche by the end was a great arc. 1 point
This episode was all about parody, so this raunchy, thinly veiled Indiana Jones riff fit right in. The desperation from Kate McKinnon’s character was expertly played, and the whole sketch was packed with great visual gags. 1 point
And here’s some more visual comedy. The reveal of a bald Beck Bennett (say that five times fast) was hilarious, and the whole sketch really hit home for something clearly born out of a dumb pun. 1 point
Anchors Colin Jost and Michael Che had some decent digs, but not as strong as other weeks. McKinnon’s Olya Povlatsky didn’t bring anything new to this appearance, but I’ll give her a pass since we haven’t seen the character in a while. We haven’t seen Thompson’s Willie in a while either (that’s what she said), so the depressingly funny old man was good for a chuckle. 1/2 point
Cooking with Paul
Now this is a great post-Update sketch. The opening lines set it up, and the cringe humor throughout spiked it. Comedy gold. 1 point
I actually spent a few years in the improv circuit — the opening and body language of the cast here are all too accurate. The twist with Robert Durst was brilliantly dark. Another home run. 1 point
Rock’s “cop who’s anything but witty” is pretty funny here, but like Killam’s character says, the sketch should have quit while it was ahead. 1/2 point
If you haven’t seen the origins of this recurring sketch, do it now. Nobody does hilariously awkward interviews better than Kyle Mooney. 1 point
Total: 12.5/13 possible points
You might say this episode was “solid as a rock.” No? Fine then. Let’s see what happens next week when Birdman himself, Michael Keaton, hosts!