The last time a fair-haired actor best known for his onscreen intensity made his SNL hosting debut, things didn’t turn out so well. Daniel Craig was game but never fully comfortable on Saturday Night Live, and the material he was given — a weirdly un-topical set of sketches about construction workers, a space mission, and Fred Armisen in a skirt — didn’t help matters. So is Jeremy Renner, a similarly serious star, destined to deliver a similarly underwhelming performance?
Even though Renner’s SNL promos were pretty rote, I’m going to give the Oscar nominee the benefit of the doubt. His skills as an impressionist are untested, but he’s given witty performances in action movies like The Avengers and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol — and Renner also told EW earlier this week that he’s planning to follow advice given to him by SNL pro (and his co-star in The Town) Jon Hamm. I can’t think of a better Saturday Night Live role model, unless Renner also consulted with Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin.
The burden on Renner may also be lessened by the presence of another SNL guest: Adam Levine, who’s on tap to perform with his band Maroon 5. It’s a given that likeable, charismatic Levine will appear in a sketch or two, as he did when his band played the show last year; if Andy Samberg shows up for a cameo, Levine could even treat us to a sequel to the 2007 Digital Short “Iran So Far.” Or maybe he’ll appear in a send-up of American Horror Story, which could be a great complement to last week’s hilarious Homeland sketch. Then again, how do you spoof something that’s already as over-the-top as AHS?
What are you hoping to see on tonight’s show — an extended Breaking Dawn — Part 2 parody starring Bill Hader as Robert Pattinson and Cecily Strong as Kristen Stewart? (Please, world, make this happen.) A soap operatic sketch about the Petreus scandal? A bit that forces Renner to wear a dress? (I’ve got a funny feeling that the last one’s inevitable.) Discuss in the comments below, and check back tomorrow morning for a full recap.