Anna Kendrick Brings Life Back to “Saturday Night Live”By: Rachel Kolman - April 6, 2014
Anna Kendrick seems to be Saturday Night Live’s saving gem. The Pitch Perfect star hosted a giggly, upbeat, and musical SNL last night that was smart, funny, and well-executed. Many fans and critics bemoan the show’s fall from grace, and with a full cast of new faces and up-and-comers, it’s easy to overlook. It seems like Anna’s liveliness was the key to showing this young cast’s potential.
The key? Musical numbers. As we’ve seen for most of the 2000s with Andy Samberg and The Lonely Island, there’s proof that songs are funny. There’s more room for absurd, off-beat humor when it’s set to a tune. It was a safe bet that Anna would bring some music to her hosting gig; she’s been a Tony nominee and saw a huge hit with Pitch Perfect’s “Cups” (which we saw briefly spoofed last night). She’s also set to star in the highly anticipated adaptation of Into the Woods, a musical interpretation of Cinderella. “I got my start in musical theater. When I was 10, my dad took me to see ‘Beauty on the Beast’ on Broadway and I just knew I wanted to be up there,” Anna says.
Makes sense then for Anna’s monologue to feature her as Belle. Entertainment Weekly’s review of the show said Anna was “more charmingly amusing than laugh-out-loud funny,” but still won over the audience with “a combination of clever writing and higher-than-normal energy.” Doesn’t hurt that Anna’s partner in crime last night was Pharrell Williams, who has the biggest song in the country right now with “Happy” and likes to tote a hat that’s as funny as it is large. (Also, Anna’s Dong Song is sure to be a viral hit.)
LA Times says that Anna’s “tiny adorableness” was a nice breath of fresh air in between episodes of Louis CK (who had a sort of dark tone to his performance) and next week’s show with Seth Rogen, which will most likely include a lot of pot jokes. It’s good to see a young cast shine when led by a bubbly, positive, and talented host.
Image via Official Website