You could be forgiven for thinking that NBC accidentally aired a “Best of Kristen Wiig” special instead of a new episode of SNL this past weekend. The show’s former star brought five old recurring characters with her when she returned to host for the first time, including Gilly, Karina the Californian, Kat (of “Garth and”), the Target Lady, and, of course, tiny-handed Dooneese — making for a show that felt, at times, more like a host-less installment from 2010 than 90 minutes of new material.
But even if the episode didn’t quite deserve to be labeled a capital-E Event, Wiig was clearly thrilled to return to her old stomping ground — and it was a pleasure to see how excited her old castmates were to perform with their friend once more.
Will that be enough to help Wiig win the title of this season’s best SNL host? That answer could well be “yes” — if she manages to defeat perennial favorite and continued poll-leader Justin Timberlake. New entrant Zach Galifianakis had a fairly strong start in the vote last week, but as things stand now, Timberlake’s still a favorite for first, with Melissa McCarthy, and Martin Short duking it out with the Hangover star in an increasingly tight race for second place. (Sorry, Vince Vaughn — you just weren’t money enough.)
Remember, everyone: we’re trying to recognize SNL‘s best host — the funniest, most-memorable emcee, one who raised everyone’s game and put on a performance that would’ve shined even in the greatest of classic SNL seasons. Consider this: Were people in the office elevator still chuckling about the episode this morning? How many times have you re-viewed a sketch online? Do you want to see this host back on the show next season?
Below, I’ve embedded one representative clip for each of the five hosts currently in the race. After the vote, the host with the least support will be eliminated, and the surviving four will face off Ben Affleck — the host of this year’s season finale.
Watch the clips, refresh your memories, and vote below.