In basketball terms, this week’s Saturday Night Live with NBA icon and Weight Watchers spokesperson Charles Barkley may have been a brick. But perhaps the convivial Less-Round Mound of Rebound deserves the benefit of being graded on a curve. After all, even though this was his third time hosting, he’s still more famous for delivering forearms and clutch jumpers, not punchlines. So maybe he gets some extra credit for playing Shaquille O’Neal in a parody of their NBA studio show — even if it wasn’t nearly as funny as the actual thing — for both breaking up with and hoisting up wee Paul Brittain, and for truly buying into the late great Dongfather character. Maybe.
Even with some generous reviews, however, Barkley has his hands full in the latest week of voting for our Saturday Night Liveliest Host contest. Performance aside, he’s also in the unenviable position of following the warmly-embraced holiday-themed episode with Jimmy Fallon. The SNL alum scored an unprecedented 81.0 percent of the vote in our most recent poll. Melissa McCarthy placed a distant second (14.8 percent) after dominating the competition most of the fall. Jason Segel (2.0 percent) edged Emma Stone (1.8 percent) for third place, and Katy Perry was retired.
Below, I’ve embedded one clip for each of the five surviving hosts, as reminders of their recent performances. Vote below, and the host with the least popular support will be sent packing, and the other four will advance to compete against Daniel Radcliffe on Jan. 14. Ultimately, we’ll crown the Saturday Night Liveliest host at the end of the season. Watch and vote below.