Saturday Night Live kicked off its latest episode with actor James Franco taking on hosting duties for the fourth time. For his opening monologue, which can be watched above, Franco fielded questions from the studio audience with a little help from Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill and Steve Martin.
Franco was in town to promote his latest film, The Disaster Artist, based on Tommy Wiseau’s The Room, which has been well received by critics upon release. SZA was the episode’s musical guest, giving powerful performances of tracks “The Weekend” and “Love Galore.”
Not only did the episode bring holiday cheer, but it also touched on topical issues including the recent sexual misconduct scandal. Check out Franco’s sketches below.
With the #metoo campaign going viral, SNL probed into the double standards of workplace protocol in “Sexual Harassment Charlie.” Franco, playing a corporate SFO, apologizes to colleagues Melissa Villaseñor, Cecily Strong, and Leslie Jones, while another colleague, played by Kenan Thompson, gets off the hook.
“The Spelling Bee” sees contestants — played by Melissa Villaseñor, Luke Null, Chris Redd and Pete Davidson — struggle to compete in the middle school competition against the snarky host’s character, who perhaps takes it all a bit too seriously.
In “Za,” Franco and Heidi Gardner disagree over a testimony made by a witness, who is played by Pete Davidson. Where do you stand on the pizza vs. lasagna issue?
Sticking with the holiday season theme, “Gift Wrap” sees Franco play an incompetent store employee who causes more than a few problems for his customers. Heidi Gardner, Beck Bennett, Leslie Jones and Kenan Thompson all feature.
“Christmas Charity” plays on the classic Christmas trope of a successful person offering a homeless person refuge from the cold. Cecily Strong appears as a kind benefactor to the unfortunate man, only to realize it’s actually James Franco preparing for a role.
Last but not least, “Reunion” sees SNL cast member Heidi Gardner throw shade at The Disaster Artist, asking: “Remember when you used to make good movies? Like with the Ape?” All in good jest, this family orientated sketch features a surprise appearance from James’s brother, Dave.
When you’ve watched these, check out Ryan Gosling’s best Saturday Night Live moments.
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