With Justin Bieber hosting Saturday Night Live 5 days before Valentine’s Day, the inclusion of too many love-themed jokes was inevitable. Even so, the SNL writers didn’t make an attempt to hold back. With the teen heartthrob taking over the show for the night, seeing Bieber as a love interest in each sketch was almost inescapable.
Not that there was anything wrong with it. Bieber was game for it all. He gamely played the love-interest as sexy, nerve-filled, wimpy, dumb, weird, or even young. As usual with SNL, some of the sketches worked, some flopped. Three stood out with Bieber (and the supporting cast) at its best. Counting down, the best sketches from Bieber’s Valentine’s Day Saturday Night Live:
1. "Valentine's Day Message From Justin Bieber"
If any Beliebers were awake last night, they were rewarded at the beginning of this sketch. That reward was soon taken away as things got weird, and quickly. Starting out innocently enough, Bieber stared into the camera speaking in a whisper as jazz played in the background. Then the "sexy dice" came out and Bieber said "fondle butt." It didn't get any less weird once Taco joined the picture, ate all the chocolates, and went to the bathroom in a kiddie toilet. In an obvious joke pitting a "sexy" Bieber against some less-than-sexy settings, the short sketch worked well, especially the disturbing sight of Bobby Moynihan's "Taco" right after devouring all the chocolates.
2. "Protective Brother"
Once again, SNL went with a pretty easy joke: giving Bieber the role of a nervous boyfriend meeting his girlfriend's family for the first time. While I thought the sketch opened slowly, SNL's employment of repetition as humor won me over the more it went along. Taran Killam's best impression of Will Ferrell as a protective brother went from annoying to funny as he thought of a million ways to make the word "glice" (a marriage of glad and nice) something worth laughing at. Plus, Bieber almost breaking mid-sketch as Killam screamed into his ear made up for the one-dimensional skit if you didn't like the glice bit.
3. "Justin Bieber Valentine's Day Monologue"
Bieber was at his finest in the show's opening. His monologue immediately set the tone for the evening and let the audience know that Valentine's Day would be the driving force in the show, but he also reminded us that February is Black History Month. He also let us know that he didn't know much about Black History Month. The best takeaway quotes:
- "Denzel Washington invented the peanut."
- "Black folks invented the Kwanzaa."
- "It's not every year that black history month and Valentine's Day fall in the same month."
The monologue was great, then Whoopi Goldberg showed up and it got even better.
While the show's monologue was its strongest point, Bieber hosting SNL's Valentine's Day episode held up throughout. It was lovely.