Saturday Night Live (season 39)
||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (January 2015)|
|Saturday Night Live (season 39)|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||21|
|Original release||September 28, 2013– May 17, 2014|
Prior to the start of the season, a large number of cast changes occurred. Long-time cast members Fred Armisen, Bill Hader and Jason Sudeikis all departed the show. In addition to them, first-year featured player Tim Robinson left the cast to focus on his new duties in the writing staff, becoming the first performer to join the writing staff after being a cast member without initially being hired as a writer.
In their places six new featured players were hired including SNL writer Mike O'Brien who was upgraded into the cast, as well as new hires Beck Bennett and Kyle Mooney of the sketch comedy group Good Neighbor, John Milhiser of the sketch group Serious Lunch, comedian Noël Wells (known for her viral videos and impressions featured on sites such as Cracked.com), and stand-up comedian Brooks Wheelan.
O'Brien has written for the show since the 2009–10 season and is the first writer to be upgraded into the cast since Jason Sudeikis in 2005. Mooney and Bennett's fellow Good Neighbor troupe member Dave McCary was also hired to direct Bennett and Mooney's digital shorts.
On May 12, 2013, NBC announced that Weekend Update anchor Seth Meyers would be the new host of Late Night in 2014 succeeding Jimmy Fallon as Fallon will take over as the new host of The Tonight Show. Meyers remained Weekend Update anchor up until his departure from the show on February 1, 2014. Cecily Strong was brought up to co-anchor with Meyers. Colin Jost, a writer for the show (and head writer for season 38 and 39), joined the cast on March 1, 2014, as a featured player and as Meyers' successor on Weekend Update. This is the third time a featured player was also a Weekend Update anchor. The first two were Tina Fey and Brian Doyle-Murray. Strong was replaced the next year by former writer and "Daily Show" correspondent Michael Che.
During the season, the show came under criticism from critics (as well as cast members Kenan Thompson and Jay Pharoah) for not including at least one black female cast member, a topic which was addressed on the November 2, 2013 show hosted by Kerry Washington. As a result, Lorne Michaels announced that the show would be holding auditions for a black female cast member, expected to join the show in January as a new featured player. UCB-NY performer Sasheer Zamata was announced as a new featured player on January 6, 2014. She made her first appearance on January 18, 2014.
The addition of eight new cast members is the greatest since the 1995–96 season, during which nine cast members were added, making it the largest cast overhaul in eighteen years. The total of 17 cast members was an SNL record, and some critics argued that the bloated cast contributed to how uneven the season was overall.
This would be the final season for Nasim Pedrad, who announced her departure from the show in June 2014 in order to work on the Lorne Michaels-produced show Mulaney. Additionally, John Milhiser, Noël Wells, and Brooks Wheelan were fired from the show after a single season. Also, Mike O'Brien left to return to the writer's room.
bold denotes Weekend Update anchors
For the first half of the season, Seth Meyers, Colin Jost and Rob Klein were co-head writers. After Meyers' departure, Bryan Tucker replaced him as a co-head writer.
Prior to the start of the season, three new writers were hired:
- Claire Mulaney, younger sister of former writer John Mulaney.
- Mikey Day, a member of The Groundlings and cast member on MTV's Wild 'N Out.
- Michael Che, a standup comic who had guest written for five episodes in season 38, was hired as a full-time writer.
This was Seth Meyers' final season as writer. Michael Che initially departed following this season to join The Daily Show as a correspondent, but returned for the start of the next season to co-anchor Weekend Update alongside Jost.
This was also the final season for longtime writers Alex Baze (Weekend Update writer since 2004, and head of the segment since 2011), Marika Sawyer and John Solomon (both of whom had been with the show since 2006), as well as the only season for LaKendra Tookes.
|Host||Musical guest||Original air date||Ratings/
|746||1||Tina Fey||Arcade Fire||September 28, 2013||4.7/12|
|747||2||Miley Cyrus||Miley Cyrus||October 5, 2013||4.5/13|
|748||3||Bruce Willis||Katy Perry||October 12, 2013||4.3/11|
|749||4||Edward Norton||Janelle Monáe||October 26, 2013||3.9/10|
|750||5||Kerry Washington||Eminem||November 2, 2013||4.9/12|
|751||6||Lady Gaga||Lady Gaga||November 16, 2013||4.9/12|
|752||7||Josh Hutcherson||Haim||November 23, 2013||4.1/10|
|753||8||Paul Rudd||One Direction||December 7, 2013||4.9/12|
|754||9||John Goodman||Kings of Leon||December 14, 2013||4.5/11|
|755||10||Jimmy Fallon||Justin Timberlake||December 21, 2013||6.3/16|
|756||11||Drake||Drake||January 18, 2014||4.7/12|
|757||12||Jonah Hill||Bastille||January 25, 2014||4.8/12|
|758||13||Melissa McCarthy||Imagine Dragons||February 1, 2014||5.4/13|
|759||14||Jim Parsons||Beck||March 1, 2014||4.6/12|
|760||15||Lena Dunham||The National||March 8, 2014||4.1/11|
|761||16||Louis C.K.||Sam Smith||March 29, 2014||4.0/10|
|762||17||Anna Kendrick||Pharrell Williams||April 5, 2014||4.0/10|
|763||18||Seth Rogen||Ed Sheeran||April 12, 2014||3.9/10|
|764||19||Andrew Garfield||Coldplay||May 3, 2014||3.9/10|
|765||20||Charlize Theron||The Black Keys||May 10, 2014||3.8/10|
|766||21||Andy Samberg||St. Vincent||May 17, 2014||4.0/10|
|Title||Original air date||U.S. viewers
|"Saturday Night Live Halloween"||October 31, 2013||5.32|
A collection of Halloween-based sketches and scary movie parodies, including:
|"Saturday Night Live Thanksgiving"||November 27, 2013||4.87|
A collection of Thanksgiving sketches including:
|"Saturday Night Live Christmas"||December 4, 2013||7.42|
A collection of Christmas and December holiday-based sketches including:
|"SNL Best of This Season"||January 4, 2014||5.6/14|
A collection of sketches from seasons 38 and 39, including:
|"SNL Presents: SNL Sports Spectacular"||January 30, 2014||4.79|
A collection of sketches from episodes hosted by professional athletes and other sports stars, hosted by Seth Meyers, including:
|"SNL Shorts"||April 24, 2014||N/A|
A collection of filmed shorts including:
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- Kondolojy, Amanda (January 19, 2014). "'Saturday Night Live' With Host and Musical Guest Drake is the #1 Telecast of the Night on "Big 4" Networks". TV by the Numbers. Retrieved January 19, 2014.
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- Cantor, Brian (May 11, 2014). ""SNL" Hits Season Low Ratings for Charlie Theron, Black Keys". Headline Planet. Retrieved May 11, 2014.
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