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SNL Ranked: Ronda Rousey Gets Unfairly Sidelined

Like Dwayne Johnson and Gina Carano before her, Ronda Rousey is graduating from the ring to the stage, though her turn as SNL host this weekend is the first time she’s really had an opportunity to flex her acting muscles. Unfortunately, the MMA pro is sidelined for much of the episode, her talents underestimated and misused from the moment she walks into Studio 8H. Beck Bennett is seemingly the only cast member who really knows how to take advantage of her skill set, delivering the best sketches of the night. The lack of actual effort to give her something to do does little to disprove the idea that SNL invited Rousey to host based almost entirely on brand recognition. And that’s really too bad. Read on for our ranking of this week’s sketches from best to worst.

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SNL Kylo Ren Adam Driver Behind the Scenes
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Watch Adam Driver Crack Up Filming SNL’s Undercover Kylo Ren Sketch

The moment Adam Driver was announced as the first SNL host of 2016, we knew a Star Wars: The Force Awakens sketch would be coming, and the NBC mainstay didn’t disappoint. Spoofing Undercover Boss with Kylo Ren was delightful, but who knew Driver had such a tough time keeping a straight face? Watch this SNL behind-the-scenes video to see for yourself.

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SNL Unites Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton With Amy Poehler’s Hillary Clinton (and Adds Tina Fey’s Sarah Palin for Good Measure)

It’s a testament to the staying power of certain public figures that they’ve been played by more than one SNL cast member over the years. People like Hillary Clinton, the former First Lady turned former Senator turned former Secretary of State turned current Democratic Presidential frontrunner, linger on long past Saturday Night Live cast rotations. So what is the show to do when one of its guest hosts used to play a vital and very much in the public eye politician back in the day? Put her on stage with the current version, of course.

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SNL’s ‘Star Wars’ Toy Ad Reminds You Who’s Really Buying All Those Toys

Sure, there are lots of kids and teens buying Star Wars: The Force Awakens toys, but a long, long time ago in a galaxy that is actually this one, Star Wars belonged to another group of nerds — and those nerds are not going to let today’s kids take ownership of their fandom so easily, especially when these kids don’t know that action figures should STAY. IN. THE. BOX.

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From the Set: Matthew McConaughey and Adele
©2015/Dana Edelson/NBC
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SNL Digs Up the ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Screen Tests You Never Thought You’d See

With Star Wars: The Force Awakens less than a month away from release and anticipation reaching a feverish level unseen in movie fans since 1999, the timing is right for SNL to gently skewer the upcoming sequel. The sketch is really just an excuse for the cast to break out a bunch of impersonations they’ve obviously been keeping in their back pockets while letting them interact with actual Star Wars cast members, but c’mon, that’s all the excuse you need, really.

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SNL Ranked: Amy Schumer Absolutely Kills It, Obviously

Amy Schumer has had an incredible couple of years with her hit series Inside Amy Schumer, her collaboration with Judd Apatow for Trainwreck, and her upcoming HBO comedy special. When you’re this beloved, there’s one place you need to be: on the SNL stage. Schumer makes her SNL hosting debut tonight and absolutely kills it, delivering a complete 180 from whatever happened with last week's relentlessly humorless season premiere (can we just pretend this was the season premiere? OK). There’s so much to love in this consistently funny episode, where even the weakest sketch of the night is still quite delightful. Read on for this week’s sketches, ranked from best to worst.

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A ‘Jeopardy’ Contestant Got Alex Trebek to Say ‘Turd Ferguson’

Alex Trebek is a cultural institution, a beacon of knowledge and grace under pressure. Everyone loves him. Which is why it’s always amusing to watch the unflappable host of Jeopardy say silly words and phrases in that reliable deadpan of his. A recent episode of the immortal game show saw him forced to say the name “Turd Ferguson,” which should amuse anyone with a passing knowledge of modern comedy.

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SNL Miley Cyrus Amy Schumer Tracy Morgan
Mike Coppola / Theo Wargo, Getty Images
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SNL Sets Miley Cyrus, Amy Schumer and Tracy Morgan As 2015 Premiere Hosts

The summer of 2015 has afforded far too many absurd and newsworthy sagas for SNL to sit out, and Season 41 is already exploding off the bench. Not only will Miley Cyrus host the October premiere, but SNL will follow up with Amy Schumer, and a momentous return for alumni Tracy Morgan.

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From the Set: Reese Witherspoon and Florence + the Machine
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SNL Forces the Cast to Apologize to Their Actual Mothers

Last night’s generally unremarkable episode of SNL peaked early when it took advantage of its proximity to Mother’s Day to do something kind of remarkable. As part of her opening monologue, guest host Reese Witherspoon declared that the show was going to mark the occasion by bringing each cast member out with his or her mother...and then forcing them to apologize for their childhood transgressions.

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From the Set: Scarlett Johansson and Wiz Khalifa
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SNL Presents Scarlett Johansson in ‘Black Widow: Age of Me’

It’s not coincidence that Scarlett Johansson guest hosted SNL on the same weekend that Avengers: Age of Ultron opened in theaters, so of course the show had to do a Marvel sketch of some kind. And unlike the previous Avengers sketches cooked up for Chris Hemsworth and Jeremy Renner, this one is actually a pretty effective dig at the Marvel movie machine. More importantly, it’s very funny.

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From the Set: Taraji P. Henson and Mumford & Sons
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SNL Sends ‘Game of Thrones’ to “South Centros”

In the cutthroat world of HBO’s Game of Thrones, life is hard and even the most innocent people find themselves victimized by the powers that be. So of course SNL would make the comparison between living in Westeros and living on the means streets of Los Angeles. Yes, it’s time to visit the eighth kingdom of this wildly popular fantasy series: South Centros.

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‘SNL’: Dwayne Johnson Returns as President “The Rock” Obama

There are few impersonations on SNL we enjoy as much as Jay Pharoah’s President Barack Obama, the chief subject of the latest episode’s cold open. But in a nice twist, the leader of the free world soon finds himself transforming into a monster of a man. Did you really think SNL would get Dwayne Johnson to guest host and not bring back The Rock Obama?

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