Last night, Eddie Murphy returned to the Saturday Night Live for the first time in 35 years (other than a brief cameo in an anniversary special). From his monologue to his revamping of some of his classic characters, he showed just why he is a SNL legend.
His opening monologue showed his titanic influence among — as if anyone had forgotten. He was joined by fellow SNL alumni Tracy Morgan and Chris Rock, as well as Dave Chapelle and current (and longest-running cast member) Keenan Thompson. He noted that it was the last episode of 2019. “But if you’re black, it’s the first episode since I left in 1984.” He also took a shot at Bill Cosby, saying that if you told him back then that he’d be a boring stay at home dad with ten kids and Cosby would be in jail, “Even I would have taken that bet.” Mimicking Cosby, he said, “Who is America’s Dad now?”
He brought back his “Mister Robinson” character for a new segment of Mister Robinson’s Neighborhood and took on gentrification.
Here, he played a contestant in a TV baking competition.
He brought back his Velvet Jones character; he was a contestant on Black Jeopardy.
Two other characters that he brought back were Buckwheat, as a contestant for The Masked Singer (that skit hasn’t been posted to YouTube yet), and Gumby, who crashed Weekend Update.
He also played a disgruntled elf at Santa’s North Pole, explaining to a news crew about a polar bear rampage caused by global warming and Santa’s negligence.
He also appeared in two skits that were cut for time. In “Holiday Gig,” he plays a keytar player performing at a Hanukkah party that keeps getting interrupted.
Here, he cameos in a skit about cast member Aidy Bryant’s obsession with musical guest Lizzo.
It was one of the best Saturday Night Live episodes in a long time; here’s hoping it won’t be another 35 years.