Saturday Night Live: Kim Kardashian West & Halsey October 9, 2021

Saturday Night Live: Kim Kardashian West & Halsey October 9, 2021
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In spite of Kim Kardashian West's enthusiasm and two dynamic performances by Halsey, Saturday Night Live featured a lot of stilted acting and uneven sketches. Here's everything that happened on SNL this week.

The cold open

C-SPAN broadcasted the Facebook senate hearings with FB whistleblower Frances Haugen, as played by Heidi Gardner. As we all saw, the real version of this featured many out-of-touch older people asking Haugen obvious questions about social media usage, and so the show dialled into some of these odd moments. Among the strongest performances here were James Austin Johnson as Lindsey Graham (normally portrayed by Kate McKinnon, who's been missing in action the first two weeks of this season) and Chris Redd as Cory Booker, who were each thirsty in their own ways, and then a strange run on Squid Game, before a visit from Tom from MySpace (Pete Davidson), all of which was pretty tepid.
 
The monologue

Kim Kardashian West, sporting body-hugging "shapewear" from her own Skims line (the first of many unspoken pseudo-QVC promos), poked fun at her image and family's reputation with a series of jabs, which were pretty good. She also went on a Norm Macdonald-esque run of O.J. jokes, stemming from her late father's involvement with his trial defence, and later took some loving digs at her ex-husband, Kanye West. All in all, it was a swift and well-executed monologue by the reality TV icon.
 
Aladdin

Pete Davidson and Kardashian West portrayed Aladdin and Jasmine, in a Disney Channel production. It was a hyper-sexualized and racialized affair, with Aladdin expressing concern about whether he has the prowess and physicality (of a Black man? In 2021, SNL?) to satisfy Jasmine, and eventually asking a genie to give him a larger penis. This was juvenile and really weak-ass, stereotypical shit.
 
Grown Ass Women in the Club

Some older women hit the club for the first time in a while in this musical remote. Cecily Strong, Ego Nwodim, Punkie Johnson and Kardashian West played the four friends who talk and sing a big game about wilding out but then they each crash and burn, the way busy moms might after a long, exhausting week of the work/life imbalance. This was a bit predictable but had some amusing moments.
 
The Dream Guy

Alex Moffat played the host of a reality TV show where the object of desire, Rochelle, selects a bachelor to pair with. As it happened, Rochelle, as played by Kardashian West, had a full cadre of celebrities to choose from and also Kyle Mooney's Zeke. Actor Chase Crawford, model and Bachelorette participant Tyler Cameron, Brooklyn Net Blake Griffin, comedians Chris Rock and Amy Schumer, actor Jesse Williams, and wrestler-actor John Cena all made brief, stilted cameos in this parade of surprises that was mildly amusing, with Zeke being the ultimate butt of this joke.
 
The Switch

In this remote, Kardashian West and Aidy Bryant discuss their lives and, via the mystical arts, arranged to switch places for one day without anybody ever knowing. With Khloe Kardashian and Kris Jenner making cameos, this Freaky Friday thing didn't really work so well in the "being funny" department.
 
The Lotteries

A pair of local newscast anchors threw to a lotto jackpot segment where the winning numbers drawn by ditzy Shonda (Kardashian West) and Ronda (Cecily Strong) don't really make a whole lot of sense. The best thing about this was Strongm but otherwise, the weirdness here was occasionally surprisingly amusing but mostly contrived.

Halsey

Fully embracing her new status as a Nine Inch Nails collaborator, Halsey appeared (on SNL for an impressive fifth time) in a futuristic, space-age body suit and held our attention during "I am not a woman, I'm a god." Her collaboration with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross brought out a darker intensity in the often-compelling artist, who can sing, and now roar, anything.


With special guest Lindsey Buckingham (formerly of Fleetwood Mac) on acoustic guitar and sparse back-up vocals, Halsey channeled Stevie Nicks, sartorially and sonically, for "Darling," a fine and lovely ballad that was stark but moving.


Weekend Update

Colin Jost began Update by revealing he went to school with Mark Zuckerberg and was around when he invented Facebook and that was about the most interesting thing about this joke. Michael Che had a chilling punchline about R. Kelly, leading Jost to make a follow-up jab, that echoed Norm Macdonald's old fake magazines gag. Alex Moffat turned up as Terry Fink, a colourful, cheery film critic who often watches new releases after micro dosing LSD. Moffat is always a pleasure and wizard with dense wordplay and performative lunacy and this new invention, Fink, was rather remarkable. Che made a good "Watermelon Sugar" joke, a hard George Floyd joke, and a funny Jost-is-a-Nazi joke. Heidi Gardner debuted "life coach" Kelly Party, a loud motivational speaker who loved the song "I Love It" by Icona Pop. Interacting with Che to inspire him to be his best, Party was loud and nonsensical but the grift wasn't as funny as it was intended to be.

The People's Kourt

Kardashian West played her sister Kourtney to take on court cases involving her family members. With cameos by Khloe Kardashian and Kris Jenner, Melissa Villaseñor as Kylie Jenner, Halsey as Kendall Jenner, Mikey Day as Travis Barker, Chris Redd as Kanye West, Pete Davidson as Machine Gun Kelly, Chole Fineman as Megan Fox, and Kenan Thompson as O.J. Simpson, this was a whirlwind of impressions. While pointedly and purposely annoying (the Kardashians seem to be good sports, joking a lot about how awful some people think they are), this was also kind of funny.
 
Hard Seltzer

The Please Don't Destroy video boys stole the whole show with this brief remote, in which a bunch of giant companies like JC Penney and Jiffy Lube have launched hard seltzers, perplexing at least one member of their gang. Short but deadly funny.
 
Skims

As mentioned earlier, Kardashian West got to subtly promote her form-fitting bodysuit venture a lot, simply by wearing different outfits throughout the show. But this last sketch, a parody of Skims for Dogs, was the most obvious and heinous commercial. Just some cast members holding dogs wearing leotards and making jokes about dogs being thicc and having dog boners. Not good.