Cold open with Obama enjoying a beer after the innagoration and visited by the spirit of Martin Luther King who turns out to be much more of a brother interested in Beyonce's booty and Michelle's bangs than most would imagine. But hey, it's his day off ( that one made me snicker). Among things that need to be changed Dr. King listed "It's 2013 and there still hasn't been a black King of England".
As far as cold opens go, this one clears the high hurdle.
Tonight's Host: Adam Levine
The Maroon 5 singer's monologue was punctuated with cameos by Andy Samberg , Cameron Diaz and Jerry Seinfeld in a "The Voice" style battle over whether Levin should take his shirt off for ratings. Andy was a bit more interested than the others...
Fake commercial for Rosetta Stone was very funny. Sometimes you really don't want to know why someone wants to learn another language. Especially if they are a middle aged creepy white guy and the language is Thai.
The Gay Network program Circle Work featured Keenan Thompson and Levine as hosts Tracy Allstar and Todd Anthony, It's a show where they take straight people and work out gay solutions to their problems... in a circle.
First guest Nancy Driscoll (Nasim Pederad) has an oversexed husband and she needs a break.
Solution: He's gay. Any man that wants sex that much is trying to prove something to this coworkers.
Next guest Doug Landers (Jason Sudeikis) is in his 30's and can't find the right woman.
Solution: He's gay. Your're as gay as a goose in a gay pride parade!
Fake promo for The Sopranos Diaries on The CW. Tony and the gang up to their hijinks in High School. Tony (Bobby Moynahan) Silvio (Bill Hader) and Paulie (Fred Armisen) as teenagers in the 80's. The guidance councilor is Mrs. Melfi (Kate McKinnon), we learn how Sal (Levine) gets his nick Big Pussy and meet Janet (Aidy Bryant). The boys even have a stripper stage in the cafeteria as they enjoy a lavish Italian meal. See Tony meet Carmella (Kate McKinnon in a dual role) in Science class. See Tony beat the snot of of a teacher (Tim Robinson) asking him to quiet down in the library. Very funny.
A NYFD fundraiser with trouble brewing as one firefighter Jerry (Levin) talks to some girl's while her ex Bryce (Hader) looks on. Bryce is an overtly gay drama queen and it turns out that was the problem in their relationship. Hader gives a fantastic performance.
SNL Digital Short featured Levine and Samberg in the boy band Lonely Island Crew video You Only Live Once. You can't be too cautious and need sound financial planning and adapting a Howard Hughes type lifestyle. It featured appearances by Kendrick Lamar and Danny McBride. Well put together bit, but then it was Samberg at the helm.
Musical Guest Kendrick Lamar performed "Swimming Pools (Drank)".
Weekend Updaye opened with the Inagural liberal tone, especially the part where Obama showered the crowd with birth control pills. To comment on Hillary's congressional visit and politics in general Arriana Huffington (Nasim Pedrad) stopped by. To comment on the Super Bowl a pumped up and emotional Ray Lewis (Keenan Thompson) paid a visit.
Levin plays himself along with Maroon 5 in a bar in the next skit when Train (Taran Killam)walks in on their turf. Rumble ensues. Actually more of a dance party. Jason Moran (Sudekis), John Mayer (Hader) and Hootie (Thompson) show up.
A parody of MTV's Catfish featuring Levin as host Nieve. First guest Jazz (Aidy Bryant) has been in a 10 year online relationship with hot guy Ace but has never met him. Turns out Ace is not a Bryan Williams look-alike. He's a black guy (Jay Pharoh) that follows UPS trucks around and steals packages off porches.
Musical guest Kendrick Lamar performed Poetic Justice in his encore.
In a Law & Order style skit, Adam Levine hooks up with middle aged Janet (Bobby Moynihan) after a Maroon 5 concert.
The night's final skit was a commercial for the post Inauguration Biden Bash at Dover Motor Speedway with Joe Biden (Sudeikis).
In the Local People Meters, "Saturday Night Live" matched its highest adult 18-49 rating since November 3 (with a telecast hosted by Louis C.K. with musical guest fun, 3.0).
All in all, it was a very good episode. The writing was much improved from last week and the performances were sharp. Not every skit was a "knock it out of the park" hit. But there weren't any gutterballs, either. Levine did a great job as host. I give it an A-.