"I don't know that I can watch the show yet because it's too emo because I miss everyone so much."
Saturday Night Live - Season 42

Kate McKinnon beamed herself back into the sky to live out her days with Mrs. Rafferty's aliens on the season 47 finale of Saturday Night Live, and now the Emmy-winning actress has opened up about her earthly decision to leave the iconic sketch show.

"I thought about it for a very long time, and it was very, very hard," McKinnon told Ryan Seacrest and Kelly Ripa on Thursday's episode of Live With Kelly and Ryan. "All I ever wanted to do in my whole life was be on Saturday Night Live. So, I did, I loved it, I had the best decade, and then I was just like, my body was tired, and I felt like it was time."

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- Pictured: Kate McKinnon as Ms. Rafferty during the Final Encounter cold open on Saturday, May 21, 2022
Kate McKinnon takes her final bow on 'Saturday Night Live.'
| Credit: Will Heath/NBC

Seacrest asked McKinnon, who joined SNL for season 37 in 2012, if she'd tune in for the show's new episodes later this year, but the performer admitted she was unsure if she was ready to revisit Studio 8H so soon after her departure.

"I don't know what I will do. I don't know that I can watch the show yet because it's too emo because I miss everyone so much. It's my family," she said. "It's too emo. So, I think I'm just going to take The Bachelorette and watch it."

Throughout McKinnon's legendary 11-year run, she uttered the series' opening line 75 times — the second-highest tally of any cast member in the show's history, behind only Darrell Hammond. She also holds the record for being the longest-running female cast member in SNL history.

McKinnon can next be heard as one of the voices in the animated feature DC League of Super-Pets, and she has a supporting role in Greta Gerwig's highly anticipated Barbie movie, which is currently in production.

In addition to McKinnon, Aidy BryantKyle Mooney, and Pete Davidson performed for the final time as part of the show's main cast this year, with season 47 being their last.

Hear more on all of today's must-see picks on EW's What to Watch podcast, hosted by Gerrad Hall.

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Saturday Night Live - Season 42
Saturday Night Live

The original late-night comedy sketch show from the one and only Lorne Michaels.

  • TV Show
  • 47
  • Saturdays at 11:30 PM
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