Second-time host Chris Hemsworth wanted to show viewers that he already rules the halls of Saturday Night Live.
The In the Heart of the Sea star, who first took the stage on March 8, spent the majority of his Dec. 12 opening monologue terrorizing the cast backstage — he sucker-punched Pete Davidson, hung up on Kate McKinnon’s phone call with Hillary Clinton and poured a pitcher of water over Vanessa Bayer.
The actor went on to display his range of talents in a handful of skits throughout the night as he took on serious, comedic and even theatrical roles.
He teamed with Sasheer Zamata for an action-packed short film where things got bloody, reprised his role as the obviously more attractive (but still goofy) identical twin Matty to Taran Killam’s Marky in “Brother 2 Brother,” and sang during an odd Broadway-themed Christmas party. He even put on his dancing shoes for a choreographed number at a strip club.
Later, the Thor star got the opportunity to fawn over himself when he donned a dress and wig so he could gossip with four girlfriends about the hottest stars in Hollywood. When they call him out, Hemsworth cops to insecurities over stars like Chris Pratt, Robert Pattinson and even brother Liam Hemsworth for stealing his “hunk” thunder. “I guess I wanted to see if people still like me,” he says.
Hemsworth, however, took a backseat when politics and Star Wars took center stage.
After a cold-open cameo from alum Will Ferrell as George W. Bush, McKinnon’s Greta Van Susteren called on GOP candidates Ted Cruz (Killam), Chris Christie (Bobby Moynihan) and Ben Carson (Jay Pharoah) to condemn Donald Trump’s ban on Muslims to no avail. “Put simply, n-yes,” says Cruz, eventually prompting an “Oh my gosh, my soul hurts” from Van Susteren.
Trump’s Muslim ban was also the opening topic on “Weekend Update,” which welcomed Time magazine’s person of the year Angela Merkel, played by McKinnon. When asked for her thoughts on Trump saying she’s ruining Germany, she replies with wide eyes, “I guess he prefers our earlier stuff.”
Now less than a week away from opening night, The Force was not forgotten. A commercial for Star Wars: The Force Awakens action figures featured Killam, Moynihan and Kyle Mooney as obsessive adult fans of the collectors’ items that are for “Ages 6 and up, way up.”
Between sketches, musical guest Chance the Rapper performed “Somewhere in Paradise” and “Sunday Candy.” Next week, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler return to co-host with musical guest Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band.