‘SNL’ kicks off generational change with Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, Pete Davidson and Kyle Mooney Sendoff in season finale – Deadline

saturday night live said goodbye to four veteran cast members tonight, Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, Pete Davidson and Kyle Mooney. McKinnon, Bryant and Davidson, who have become household names since SNL launched their careers, they all got individual sendoffs with some of their most popular recurring skits. Mooney, who has spent most of his time on the show as a valuable but underrated actor, made a low-key but dramatic exit.

Overall, the episode, hosted by Natasha Lyonne, was a throwback to a time when SNL cast members used to get proper send-offs in the season finale that crowned their careers. The last big event came during the 2012 season finale, with host and musical guest Mick Jagger. He bid farewell to Jason Sudeikis, Andy Samberg and Kristen Wiig, who had all completed seven-year terms. The famous episode ended with Jagger leading a dance farewell for Wiig to the Rolling Stones’ “She She She’s a Rainbow” and “Ruby Tuesday.”

McKinnon, Bryant, Davidson, and Mooney are prominent members of the SNL generation that succeeded Sudeikis, Samberg and Wiig. McKinnon has been on the show for 11 seasons, Bryant for 10, Mooney for 9, and Davidson for 8. In addition to the quartet, there are other very popular cast members who have been on the show for eight seasons or more, including Michael Che, Colin Jost, Cecily Strong and also SNL Kenan Thompson Institution.

The pandemic likely slowed down the rotation of the back cast, as only veteran Beck Bennett left last summer and the show’s troupe ballooned to a record 21 members this season. With the departures of McKinnon, Bryant, Davidson, and Mooney, the generational shift in the show has been set in motion.

The SNL The season 47 finale set the tone for the farewell with Cold Open revisiting one of the show’s most popular recurring sketches of the past decade, “Close Encounter,” which has cast Kate McKinnon in one of its most popular characters. in the program. Cecily Strong and Aidy Bryant. It ended with McKinnon’s character, Miss Rafferty, boarding a spaceship to leave Earth permanently.

“Well, Earth. I love you guys, thanks for letting me hang around for a while,” McKinnon said, as Rafferty fought back tears, before adding: “Live from New York, it’s saturday night live.”

weekend update featured Pete Davidson and Bryant.

Not surprisingly, Davidson, who first made his mark on SNL with its segments weekend update, returned to the fake news for his final appearance as a cast member. She ended it with a heartfelt message of thanks to the show and her boss, Lorne Michaels.

“I appreciate saturday night live always watching my back,” he said. “Thank you, Larne, for never giving up on me or judging me, even when everyone else did, and for believing in me and allowing me to have a place I could call home, with memories that will last a lifetime. So thanks guys.”

In other weekend update parody, Bryant and Bowen Yang reprized their quirky characters from Trend Forecasters. The bit ended with Bryant announcing that “My best boys kiss me,” leading to Yang and weekend update co-host Michael Che giving her a kiss and a hello, along with a flower flirt.

Mooney, who reprized one of his most popular characters, Baby Yoda, last week, went unrecognized in his latest completed sketch, a from 9 to 5 parody, which also featured SNL student Fred Armisen. But it ended with Mooney and Armisen’s character making a dramatic exit by jumping out of a window and they were last seen flying through an office building.

In the final skit of the night, McKinnon and Bryant, who have done a host of quirky commercial sketches, including the popular vacation spot HomeGoods and an Apple Picking ad, delivered one last collaboration, an ad for Gray Adult Pigtails. Fittingly, it featured a cameo from Mooney. (You can see the final sketches of the departing cast members, as well as their latest curtain call below.)

While the entire finale served as a send-off for the four departing cast members, there was no mention of their departure during the traditional curtain call that featured Mooney giving McKinnon an emotional hug.

The high-profile cast departures came after Michaels recently admitted that he hoped this year would be a “year of change” for the show. It’s not a surprise given that this season featured 21 stars and eight cast members who were entering their eighth season and beyond.

Davidson has been to SNL since 2014 as one of the youngest members of its cast. She has become one of the show’s breakout stars in recent years, co-writing and starring in The King of Staten Island and co-creating and starring bukis, which recently landed a straight-to-series order at Peacock. The latter is produced by Lorne Michaels, with whom Davidson will continue to have a relationship.

He has been largely absent this season, appearing in only a handful of episodes while filming features including Home.

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McKinnon has been on the show since 2012 and was promoted to repertory player on season 39 in 2013, becoming one of the show’s MVPs and winning two Emmy Awards.

There have been persistent rumors in recent years that he might be leaving, but he has stayed, though not as regularly as in the past. McKinnon recently took time off the show to film tiger king scripted series Joe vs. Carole for Peacock, where she played Carole Baskin.

Bryant joined the show in 2012 and was promoted in its second season. He has played characters like Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Ted Cruz. Similarly, he has come and gone recently, starring in three seasons of Michaels’ executive production. Strident for Hulu.

Meanwhile, Mooney, who most recently played Johnny Depp in last week’s episode, has been with the show since 2013 and was promoted to repertory player at the start of season 41.

Here are the latest McKinnon, Bryant, Davidson and Mooney SNL parodies:

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