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Cast of Saturday Night Live reflect performing comedy during the pandemic in season finale cold open

The season finale of Saturday Night Live remembered the ‘unusual circumstances’ of the past year throughout the coronavirus pandemic with a both humorous and sentimental look back at what the cast had to endure during the era of Covid 19.

Instead of the usual cold open sketch, the Season 46 finale saw the various cast members outlining how their lives had changed while performing comedy on the hit TV show. 

‘This year was crazy,’ began Aidy Bryant. ‘So crazy it made a lot of us crazy,’ said Cecily Strong.

Saturday Night Live ended its 46 season with a look back at the past year. Cast members, from left Aidy Bryant, Kate McKinnon, Kenan Thompson and Cecily Strong explained that this year was ‘so crazy, it made a lot of us crazy.’

The cast also showed off photos of rehearsals while wearing masks.

The cast also showed off photos of rehearsals while wearing masks.

‘We went from doing very weird shows at home to terrifying shows in person,’ said Bowen Yang.

‘Everyone else was fleeing New York, but [executive producer Lorne Michaels] was like, ‘we should go back… for comedy,’ Ego Nwodim added.  

Kate McKinnon told of the precautions that ‘led to a lot of confusion’ when cast members were not allowed to hug one another.

‘If I wanted to hug someone, I had to pull them into a closet and do it in the dark, away from the authorities,’ she joked.

'In the middle of our show, a guy in the audience was just reading a medical text,' laughed Cecily Strong. The text can be seen, circled

‘In the middle of our show, a guy in the audience was just reading a medical text,’ laughed Cecily Strong. The text can be seen, circled

'I can't believe I lasted an entire season without testing positive… for COVID,' added Pete Davidson

‘I can’t believe I lasted an entire season without testing positive… for COVID,’ added Pete Davidson

She explained how at the start, the audience members were mainly made up from first responders and other medical personnel until they decided that was not such a good idea. 

‘In the middle of our show, a guy in the audience was just reading a medical text,’ laughed Strong. 

‘I can’t believe I lasted an entire season without testing positive… for COVID,’ added Pete Davidson. 

The cast also showed off photos of rehearsals while wearing masks. 

The opening also brought the season full circle for comedian Chris Rock who hosted the very first episode of the season, which he joked 'feels like six years ago.'

The opening also brought the season full circle for comedian Chris Rock who hosted the very first episode of the season, which he joked ‘feels like six years ago.’

The opening also brought the season full circle for comedian Chris Rock who hosted the very first episode of the season, which he joked ‘feels like six years ago.’ 

‘Here’s how messed up the world was when I hosted, okay? I wanted Kanye West to be the musical guest and he couldn’t do it because he was running for president,’ Rock joked.   

Rock said the week he hosted was also the week that President Trump ‘who said that Covid would disappear, got Covid! That was this season!’  

‘Mostly we remember how lucky we are to have a job in a time when so many people were out of work,’ said Kenan Thompson. 

 Kate McKinnon teared up as she spoke of her experience of COVID-19.

‘This was the year we realized we realized we’re more than just a cast. We’re a family.’

‘And like a true family, we are kind of sick of each other,’ Bryant said. ‘And we need a little break.’  

For the first and only time in the season, the show played at full capacity with all audience members having to show proof of being vaccinated to enter

For the first and only time in the season, the show played at full capacity with all audience members having to show proof of being vaccinated to enter

Cast members all joined in the cold open together with Chris Rock who hosted the season premiere

Cast members all joined in the cold open together with Chris Rock who hosted the season premiere

Strong thanked the audience for sticking with the show through ‘an election, an insurrection, and objection that there was an insurrection!’ 

The show had a capacity crowd at the NBC studio at Rockefeller Plaza in New York City for the first time in the series. All guests needing to be fully vaccinated to attend the broadcast with audience members required to show their physical vaccination cards to enter. 

The Queen’s Gambit star Anya Taylor-Joy hosted the episode, with rapper Lil Nas X performing as the musical guest. 

The Queen's Gambit star Anya Taylor-Joy hosted the episode

The Queen’s Gambit star Anya Taylor-Joy hosted the episode

Rapper Lil Nas X performed as the musical guest

Rapper Lil Nas X performed as the musical guest


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