Melissa McCarthy had a busy week as "Saturday Night Live" host.
She walked out with a llama, spun above the stage fighting and winning, shot out some security camera lights, pounded on several dudes including two cops and got herself elected to congress all before midnight.
McCarthy should have quit while she was ahead, however, as the later half of the show fell into a routine mix of her playing either loud-mouthed and crude, or slightly deranged characters.
Her solid first half served as a comedic lead-in to Seth Meyers' final appearance as co-host on "Weekend Update." He'll be taking over Jimmy Fallon's spot on "Late Night" on Feb. 24 after the Olympics. Fallon replaces Jay Leno on "Tonight."
Meyers got a warm sendoff as Stefon [Bill Hader], former co-host Amy Poehler and pal Andy Samberg stopped by to wish him farewell.
"You barely know him," Stefon snapped at co-host Cecily Strong.
"This is job I always wanted," Meyers said before thanking his fellow cast members.
Even former New York governor David Paterson [Fred Armisen] wandered by the camera after the news ended.
McCarthy said in her monologue that she happened to be in town for the Super Bowl to support her husband, Richard Sherman. "We fight a lot," she said.
Who knew she left on such bad terms the last time she hosted, and took a llama, too.
It turned into a high-flying duel with Bobby Moynihan, as the two heavyweights duked it out while being tethered above the stage.
McCarthy, who showed her physical comedic abilities by turning several flips while being suspended, got the win thanks to some help from a baseball bat.
She remains Chris Farley's long, lost twin sister.
The cold-opening featured an improvised Super Bowl half-time show starring Broadway stars since Bruno Mars couldn't make it.
"Super Bowl" the musical featured Peyton Manning learning the ropes from Mama Pass [McCarthy] and Ben Vereen [Kenan Thompson] playing Richard Sherman.
"There's no Seattle, there's no Denver, there's just love."
Shelia Kelly was back, but this time as a belligerent congresswoman from Delaware who makes Rep. Michael Grimm seem soft.
She took on several reporters and anyone else unlucky enough to try and film her rampages.
"I can wait here ALL night," she bellowed at one target she chased into a parking garage.
She's also a pretty good shot, taking out several security cameras.
"I'm gonna live forever."
Guys, with Valentine's Day just around the corner, it was time to get some Dumb Little Thing From CVS.
This filmed skit hit waaaaaay tooooooo close to home for some of us. A small bear dressed like a bee with "Bee Mine" on it.
"Nothing says Valentine's Day like an old Christmas stocking."
Another filmed skit, "28 Reasons to Hug a Black Guy," handled Black History Month in song like this: "1. We deserve a chance. 2-28. Slavery."
Quick and to the point.
McCarthy's gig allowed the female cast members to be featured in several skits, including a women's discussion group that featured a variety of goals. Hers was to avenge the killing of her father. Each of the women brought an object that inspires them, including a copy of "Under the Tuscan Sun." McCarthy's character brought a box that featured a trophy from each time she "erased" someone on her journey. Her time with the group ended when she was scoped with a laser sighting.
The later skits with McCarthy labored. The best-friends, "Girlfriends Talk Show" [Aidy Bryant and Strong] brought back their recurring gig with McCarthy joining them as a divorcee on the rebound who has become obsessed with her hew boyfriend, Pua. "Now I understand what 'Hawaiian 5-0' means because he's given me five o's."
During "Weekend Update," Buford Calloway [Taran Killam] was a survivor of the storm that hit Atlanta last week. Two inches of the "Devil's dandruff," "New Hampshire's cocaine," "Yankee Powder," and "Obama's white friend" fell on Georgia and left the much of the region in a state of paralysis. When it began snowing, "I went to the safest place I could find, the interstate," he said.
The skit hit on all the cultural stereotypes of Southerners, plus highlighted the complete lack of storm preparation in many states that cost lives. Of course, had an Atlanta-based show turned the tables on New Yorkers in a similar way, cries of bigotry and outrage would have shut down the internet.
"Weekend Update" jumped the political shark by comparing John McCain's 5 1/2 years as a POW in North Vietnam to having Sarah Palin as a running mate. The only thing worse than 5 1/2 years as a POW in Vietnam would have been 6 1/2 years as a POW in Vietnam.
Grammy winners Imagine Dragons were the musical guests. "Radioactive" was just that, a strong performance that rocked the Studio 8H crowd.
The show returns on March 1 after the Olympics, which should provide plenty of comedic material.
The new co-host of "Weekend Update" will be Harvard alum and long-time writer Colin Jost:
RIGHT NOW! It's our last show with @sethmeyers. One the best writers in the history of SNL and one of my favorite people of all time.— Colin Jost (@TheColinJost) February 2, 2014
Sizable shoes to fill, indeed.
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