People wonder why we write about Saturday Night Live so much when we regularly give it pretty negative reviews. Well, first off, people still love reading about this show, or at least just clicking on links to complain in the comments, because SNL pieces always do pretty well. Secondly the show is a legitimate institution in both television and comedy that will always be worth covering by any outlet that writes about television and comedy. And thirdly it’s still capable of being truly great. Last night’s episode, hosted by Larry David, was one of the best season so far, and we’ll probably be posting a few different videos today to prove it.
First up: This brilliant short film that combines David’s celebrated Bernie Sanders impression with his long-running HBO show Curb Your Enthusiasm. It’s not just funny because of David’s impression, or Cecily Strong’s fantastic take on Susie Essman as a Sanders adviser, or Jay Pharoah as a spot-on JB Smoove; what makes it one of the best SNL bits in recent memory is how faithfully it transports the Curb formula to the Iowa caucus. David is playing Sanders as Curb’s Larry David, and despite nailing the rhythm, tone and self-defeating twists of a Curb episode, you never forget that David is supposed to be Sanders. And then the punchline is ripped completely from real life, like a Law & Order case, and you start to think this whole idea was probably reversed engineered from the improbably close results in last week’s caucus. It’s a case of real life overlapping perfectly with the show’s mission, and the result is one of those SNL videos that people will remember for decades.