TV and Movies

‘Saturday Night Live’ Ratings Slip With Host Issa Rae, Remain Above 2019 Levels

The Oct. 17 telecast of Saturday Night Live, with host Issa Rae and musical guest Justin Bieber, drew a 4.5 rating household Live+Same Day rating in the 44 metered local markets and a 2.0 adults 18-49 rating in the 25 markets with local people meters.

That was down a notch from last week’s show hosted by Bill Burr (4.7, 2.2), which in turn was off from the season premiere two weeks ago emceed by Chris Rock (5.6, 2.9). Despite the week-to-week slide, SNL, buoyed by the final stretch in the Presidential election cycle, remains up double digits over last year’s October average (+15% in households, +18% in 18-49).

SNL is a big delayed viewer gainer. The Oct. 3 season opener has already more than doubled its 18-49 rating with delayed viewing, growing by +130% with digital and linear viewership to date, from a 1.84 in Live+ Same Day to a 4.24. The season premiere also has added +6.0 million viewers overall, going from 8.2 million to 14.2 million.

In addition to the Cold Open skewering the two dueling Town Hall specials, the most popular videos from last night as of Sunday morning include the opening segment of Weekend Update focused on Donald Trump, and the Weekend Update skit featuring impersonations of three of Trump’s adult children.

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Jack White Named ‘SNL’ Musical Guest After Morgan Wallen Booted Over COVID

Jack White is stepping in as a last-minute replacement on this week’s “Saturday Night Live,” after the NBC show dismissed previously booked artist Morgan Wallen after he violated COVID-19 protocols.

White, frontman of the White Stripes, will make his third solo appearance (and four overall) on “SNL” on Oct. 10, with host Bill Burr. “The White Stripes Greatest Hits” collection will be released Dec. 4.

Wallen on Wednesday posted an Instagram video telling fans that he was informed by “SNL” that he would no longer be able to play the show. He said he had not tested positive for COVID-19, but “my actions from this past weekend were pretty short-sighted, and have obviously affected my long-term goals and my dreams,” he said, referring to TikTok video posts that showed him socializing in Alabama without a mask at a crowded bar and a house party.

“Saturday Night Live,” currently in its 46th season on NBC, is produced in association with Broadway Video, headed by “SNL” creator and executive producer Lorne Michaels. Earlier this month, every season of “SNL” became available NBCUniversal’s Peacock.

More to come

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‘SNL’ addresses ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’ controversy by replacing the host with Drew Barrymore in a hilarious sketch

  • The season 46 premiere of "Saturday Night Live" included a sketch about giving Drew Barrymore, played by Chloe Fineman, her own talk show following the controversy surrounding "The Ellen DeGeneres Show." 
  • "After seeing what went down with Ellen, we took a hard turn in the other direction," the narrator says in the sketch. 
  • Fineman's Barrymore continues to describe herself as a "boho free spirit mommy mother movie star." 
  • The sketch makes direct references to allegations that DeGeneres doesn't allow staffers to make eye contact with her and fosters a toxic work environment, saying that the new host "maintains eye contact too long and is too emotionally supportive."
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