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'Saturday Night Live' best host poll: The Rock flexes his comedy muscles

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Dana Edelson/NBC

When Dwayne Johnson first hosted Saturday Night Live in 2000, he was billed as The Rock and wrestling was his claim to fame. His approach to comedy seemed to be built on a simple willingness to do anything. But on Saturday, Johnson proved again that he’s more than just an action star—his fourth stint as host was one of the best SNL episodes of the season. Not only did he thrive in sketches that relied on his reputation as a muscled hero, but he also nailed other, less-broad bits like “Dinner Date,” where he was every bit as good as the show’s main cast. 

Picking a favorite sketch from Johnson’s episode is actually a challenge—because unlike some of his peers, there are several to choose from. His “Rock Obama” cold open delivered. “Escape From Jungle Island” was admirably over-the-top ridiculous. The “Bambi” trailer was fun. “WWE Promo Shoot” may have been the best-written sketch of the season. Even his monologue—”Franchise Viagra”—rose above the typical song-and-dance tone-setter. 

If it sounds like I’m compromising some objectivity, well… okay. You got me. I thought Johnson’s SNL was as good as anyone’s this season. But now it’s your turn. Johnson has to go toe-to-toe with another action hero, Chris Hemsworth, who debuted in our Mr. Saturday Night poll with an impressive 68.9 percent. He crushed Bill Hader and Martin Freeman, who seem relatively safe in the standings, pushed Dakota Johnson to the brink, and eliminated Blake Shelton.

Previous vote:

Chris Hemsworth    68.9% (—)

Bill Hader                12.7% (-13 pts)

Martin Freeman      10.9% (-12)

Dakota Johnson       4.6% (-31)

Blake Shelton           2.9% (-5)

Our rules are simple: Who was the best, most memorable SNL host this season? More specifically, who do you hope gets invited back next year? Whose hilarious episode enjoyed multiple viewings on your DVR? Whose show had your boss, your mom, and your roommate still giggling on Monday morning? It’s subjective, of course, but let’s reward the guest hosts who brought something special to the table.

So far, we’ve voted off Sarah Silverman, Chris Rock, Chris Pratt, Cameron Diaz, Woody Harrelson, James Franco, Amy Adams, Jim Carrey, Kevin Hart, J.K. Simmons, and Shelton.

Below, watch one representative clip from each of the five hosts, just as a small taste of their recent performances. You’re not voting on this one sketch alone; be sure to consider the entire episode. Make your pick below, and the host with the least support will be eliminated; the other four will advance to compete against Michael Keaton on April 4. Ultimately, we’ll dismiss the less memorable hosts and crown a new Mr. or Mrs. Saturday Night in May. Watch and vote below.

Bill Hader

 

Martin Freeman

 

Dakota Johnson

 

Chris Hemsworth

 

Dwayne Johnson

 

 

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