None of us were expecting miracles with the announcement that Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine would be hosting Saturday Night Live, which is probably a good thing. Inflated expectations would have led only to disappointment, as this week was yet another stumble in what has been a frustrating season for the show.
Though he had appeared in a few sketches in the past -- most notably a Digital Short in which he only had to sing -- I'm not sure why anyone thought that Levine would prove to be a comedic powerhouse as host. He wasn't. While he wasn't a disaster, he just wasn't very funny. It wasn't entirely his fault, of course; there was really only one sketch (a talk show hosted by two gay men, one of whom was played by Levine) in which he even played a character. In most of the sketches, he actually played himself or a version of himself, which is the sort of thing usually reserved for when athletes host the show. It's clear that everyone involved was hoping to make another discovery along the lines of Justin Timberlake, who somehow has ended up being one of the best recurring guest hosts of the last 10 years, but Levine was not that. He was not even close. Timberlake succeeds because he elevates every sketch he's in. Levine only managed to not mess things up too badly.
This was an episode populated mostly by lame sketches, though even the worst among them (with the exception of a bad taped piece about Joe Biden) had at least one or two decent jokes within. The pre-taped sketches -- including the long-awaited return of The Lonely Island and an inspired Digital Short -- provided the night's best moments. Obviously, Saturday Night Live is never going to abandon its "live" component completely, but weeks like this one make a case for doing so.
(Read the full SNL Adam Levine recap)
Photo courtesy NBC