After 35 years of being outside the Saturday Night Live spotlight, Eddie Murphy returned to the 30 Rock stage to host the final SNL episode of 2019. Fans expected it to be a rowdy affair, and it's fair to say no one was set for shock if the comedian let loose with any foul language. Lo and behold, Murphy actually looked the most shocked when his accidental S-bomb came out. Star Cecily Tyson, however, appeared far less surprised by her own potential profanity elsewhere in the episode.
Eddie Murphy's S-Bomb
Eddie Murphy could have easily slipped an abundance of four-letter swear words while returning to the small screen roles that helped set up his historic career, but it somehow didn't happen during those reprisals of Buckwheat, Mr. Robinson, Gumby or Velvet Jones. Instead, Murphy went off-book during the sketch sending up Food Network's "Holiday Baking Championship." After baking one of the worst cakes known to man – it literally burst into flame without much reason – his reaction was strong, and was also caught by the censors. Check out the sketch below, with the profanity coming right around the 4:22 moment.
Even if nobody else in the world had any confidence in that disaster of a dessert, which was supposed to be modeled after Sonic the Hedgehog, Eddie Murphy's Mitch kept the faith. After the aforementioned fire began, Murphy hollered directly at his toothy cake, "We can still win this shit!" Of course, as soon as he said it, he realized his error, and sheepishly looked directly up at the laughing audience with his hand over his mouth. And boom, that's how you create a memorable SNL return.
Granted, muttering "shit" within such a positive context isn't exactly on the same level as the hyper-blue material that Eddie Murphy used to pepper his stand-up comedy acts with. (Not to mention in Beverly Hills Cop and other R-rated movies.) But it was enough to cause NBC's SNL-specific censors to blot the swear word out of certain broadcasts, though it doesn't appear that it was removed from everyone's airing. By all means, it could have been a lot worse. He's Gumby, dammit!
Cecily Strong's F-Bomb
Speaking of that anger-driven line, SNL vet Cecily Strong seemingly had her own piece of profanity go unchecked by the censors. Strong revisited the Weekend Update desk for another completely batshit crazy performance as Fox News host Jeanine Pirro. Admitting that she'd recently drank two bottles of wine and then some, Strong's Pirro reacted to some of Colin Jost's political conversation points by vomiting all over the desk and onto Jost's suit.
After that first spew happens, it's pretty much impossible for Colin Jost to maintain any sense of stoicism, and he basically laughs his ass off the entire time. But it's when ending the scene that Cecily Strong appears to let loose with a quick F-bomb in the midst of sharing holiday sentiments. Watch it below!
For those who couldn't watch, Cecily Strong's follow-up wine spew derails Colin Jost harder than ever – he even mentions that some of it got in his mouth – and when signing off in the end, it sounds like Strong says "Merry fuckin' Christmas." There is apparently some debate over what was said, however, which is partially sparked by the censors not clamping down on the moment immediately.
For some viewers, the line is clearly the not-safe-for-TV F-bomb, while others insist that she says the far less offensive "Merry friggin' Christmas." Then there are some viewers who believe what she said lies somewhere in between those two words, as a "fuggin" or a "fruggin."
Cecily Strong's lips also appear to be saying the profanity, though, and not something with an R-sound in it. Plus, Colin Jost's reaction after that line is seemingly stronger than it would have been had Strong just said "friggin," but I suppose this is one of those situations where certain people only hear certain things.
SNL won't be back for new episodes until the new year, when it will welcome The Rise of Skywalker star Adam Driver as its guest host, with Halsey as the musical guest. One has to think that this successful experiment will inspire more returns from Eddie Murphy in the future, especially considering he's got a pair of big-name sequels on the way in Coming to America 2 and Beverly Hills Cop 4.
The NBC hit, which saw a big spike in viewership for Eddie Murphy's installment, will return on Saturday, January 24, at 11:35 p.m. ET.