Saturday Night Live has always performed better in an election year, but even with November far behind us, SNL is still drawing eyes because of its politics. Donald Trump is President and NBC's signature sketch show has a lot to say about that, which has kept viewers coming back each week. There's certainly been no shortage of topics for SNL to parody and that added viewership has benefited SNL greatly. Now it's being reported that last night's episode rivaled the seasons best in the ratings.
Last night, Kristen Stewart hosted Saturday Night Live, and in an episode filled with certain faux pas, it managed to deliver one of the highest rated episodes of the season. The episode drew in 5.0 Live+same day household rating in the metered markets and a 2.5 adults 18-49 rating in the markets with local people. If you don't speak Nielsen, that all basically translates to "a lot more people watched than usual." This places Kristen Stewart's episode as one of the highest rated in a season that has generally seen an increase in viewership from years past.
This episode was one the highest rated episodes since the November 12 episode -- the weekend after Trump was elected president. The Dave Chapelle hosted episode garnered a 6.2 household rating with 3.9 in 18-49. Though Kristen Stewart's episode didn't quite reach those numbers, it's still one of the highest performing episodes of SNL's 42nd season. Just compare Stewart's episode to the January 21 episode in which Aziz Ansari hosted. That episode scored a 5.1 household and 2.5 in the 18-49 demographic, rivaling last night's numbers. Ansari's episode not so coincidentally aired the weekend after Trump's inauguration, and the same day as the Women's March.
Last night's episode of SNL was certainly a memorable one, where -- after a fairly typical by now cold open -- Kristen Stewart accidentally said the F-word right at the end of her monologue, much to the shock and laughter of cast members Aidy Bryant and Kate McKinnon (who were on stage with her). That pretty much set the tone for the rest of the night, but most deeply affected Weekend Update. Michael Che screwed up a joke pretty badly, while Colin Jost almost ended Update five minutes early. It was just one of those nights.
That's not to say that the episode didn't have some serious winners, though. The surprisingly sensual Tostino's commercial killed, as well as a video for Homeland Security's travel ban procedures that didn't pull any punches. The night even had what will likely go down as an SNL classic when surprise guest Melissa McCarthy took the stage as White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, to hit journalists with a Super Soaker and beat them up with a podium.
Alec Baldwin hosts SNL next week with musical guest Ed Sheeran. Watch SNL on NBC, Saturday nights at 11:30 p.m. EST.