Peter Dinklage SNL

Peter Dinklage Hosts SNL: Watch Video of the Best and Worst Sketches

As Game of Thrones‘ Tyrion Lannister, Peter Dinklage has had to bring to life myriad unspeakable horrors.

This week’s Saturday Night Live, however, presented him with an even more daunting challenge: Delivering an opening monologue that didn’t contain a single decent punch line.

Not since Tyrion’s courtroom speech to defend his life back in Season 4 of GoT has Dinklage been such a figure of unabashed sympathy. And while I wish I could say this week’s SNL took a sunnier, funnier turn following the dubious monologue, I’m simply not able to lie as easily as, say, Littlefinger or Cersei.

With that grim pronouncement made, let’s recap the episode’s best and worst sketches.

BEST: NAKED AND AFRAID: CELEBRITY EDITION
Dinkage and a horny Leslie Jones starred as themselves in this amusing digital short, which found the host not only wondering why Jones was aggressively spooning him, but how she’d managed to cup his junk in her hands. (Hey, it’s the warmest part, isn’t it?)

BEST: “VACATION NIGHTMARES”
This ID channel satire worked especially well thanks to Kate McKinnon and Aidy Bryant being cast in the cable network’s reenactment of two Danish men preying on innocent American vacationers. Watch it for Bryant’s guffaw-inducing “I’m a psycho maniac, bitch.” And bear in mind it somehow gets funnier from that point forward.

WORST: COLD OPEN
The SNL writers took a journey to the heart of Trumpville, and all we got was a lousy t-shirt of Cecily Strong as a doltish supporter of the GOP front-runner refusing to be dissuaded by even her candidates most misogynistic stances.

WORST: OPENING MONOLOGUE
OK, so Bobby Moyniahn (as author George R.R. Martin) trying to get a female cast member to bear her breasts —Thrones-style — was good for a chuckle. But what a wasted opportunity reducing Dinklage to little more than a prop in his own intro. I guess I could give a compliment and say the moment was blink-and-you-missed it pithy, but that was a blessing in this scenario.

With that said, it’s your turn. Grade host Dinklage’s episode in our poll below, then expand on your thoughts in the comments! (And bear in mind we’ll add video once it’s available on Sunday morning.)

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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46 Comments
  1. xx says:

    Musical performances remind anyone else of Ashlee Simpson?

  2. Phoenix5634 says:

    I’m a big fan of Peter Dinklage, only tuned in for him, and it was good I enjoyed it.

    • The Beach says:

      I’m a big fan of Dinklage also but I thought it was the worst, least funny SNL I’ve seen in a long time. From the cold opening to the monologue to the skits, it was just awful. The writers really dropped the ball on this one…FAIL.

      • liame says:

        Hahaha, “big fan”, well played.

      • Timmah says:

        Agreed. I only watch SNL very occasionally, when there’s a host or musical guest I like, and each time it seems like the writing gets worse. It’s become a lot of unfunny “cringe humor” aimed at 15 year olds.

  3. K2 says:

    I can’t BEAR the fact that she didn’t BARE her breasts. LOL!

  4. peterwdawson says:

    Cold open was funnier than Vacation Nightmares, which is admittedly more of a condemnation of the Vacation bit than the cold open.

  5. immeam says:

    lol..the Naked and Afraid was funny… wanted to listen to Gwen actually singing…but Whatever..todays ep was cool

  6. immeam says:

    lol..the Naked and Afraid was funny… wanted to listen to Gwen actually singing…but Whatever..todays ep was cool…:v

  7. Sue says:

    Not a single funny sketch, but it wasn’t Dinklage’s fault. Did anyone catch Gwen’s obvious lip synch in Space Pants? She opened her mouth and Peter’s voice came out. What a great impression. LOL!

  8. Karen says:

    Didnt see it all but thought the restaurant with the food put through a hole sketch was horrible. Not for prudish reasons, it just wasn’t funny. When did SNL hire 12 year old writers?

    • Tina Fey says:

      Over 20 years ago. Where have you been? LOL! :P

      • Timmah says:

        If they’d have only ended this show 20 years ago it could have been remembered as one of the all-time greats. Now it’s going to be remembered as an embarrassing money/ratings grab.

    • AngelWasHere says:

      Yeah that sketch alone made me turn the channel and I love Peter Dinklage. I missed the cold open, but I guess I didn’t missed anything with that either.

    • Staci says:

      My husband and I must be 12 because we thought it was hilarious!

      • Bruce Wayne says:

        Staci, your husband and yourself must be equally lacking in good taste as well as morals if you liked any part of that sketch.

    • Will says:

      the glory hole sketch was probably the funniest of the entire night IMO.

  9. Mick says:

    The most stunning thing about this weeks SNL is that over 50% of those voting on this site think it was very good or awesome. That has to be one of the worst SNL episodes in the history of this franchise. What the writers did to Peter Dinklage is criminal. The Opening monologue has to be the worst this show has ever seen. Donald Trump practically teed it up for the SNL writing staff for this weeks Cold open …. and this was the best they could come up with? No doubt many Game of Thrones fans watched this because of Dinklage and the best parody the writing staff could muster was this lame Dragon bit. No doubt we should all be sending in our resumes to Lorne Michaels because he obviously isn’t too picky when it comes to his writing staff.

  10. Warwick Davis says:

    This episode was a huge disappointment. Peter seems to be able to act well in serious roles, but unfortunately he doesn’t have the “funny” factor. The only funny bits of the episode (and they were few and far between) were because of the SNL cast (such as Leslie in “Naked and Afraid”)…and in spite of Peter. :(

    • Allee says:

      Agreed. He’s not funny. He can make a wry comment in a serious situation which will elicit a “Ha!” but the only role in which he has been truly funny was in Elf, and even that was more the physical juxtaposition of him against the tall Will Ferrell in a fistfight and contrasting his seriousness with Ferrell’s dopiness, so he was the straight man. The Naked and Afraid sequence was funny because Leslie Jones and Peter Dinklage together is a funny picture, especially since she is so fierce. Since they aren’t going to spend the entire 90 min. exploiting his size, which he clearly does NOT want to do, has a history of not wanting to do (Other actors do exploit their physical appearance for laughs, whether that is Louie C.K., who makes fun of his nerdy look or Chris Hemsworth who makes fun of looking like Thor or their own regulars like Taran Killam, who exploits a sort of jerk face he has or Leslie Jones, who exploits her hugeness), there isn’t that much a show like SNL, which tends toward the slapstick, can do with a guy with a dry wit. He is a great serious actor. He would be a great leading man but for his appearance.

  11. Paco says:

    Once again, another SNL show comes up short.

  12. Jodi says:

    Naked and afraid was the only funny moment.
    Maybe it’s the Curse of Ignoring Sasheer. She was in a few Ariana Grande sketches and it was one of the funniest shows of the season. Not sure why she has been ignored these past few months. She deserves way more air time.

    • dan says:

      There are always sketches that are cut for time. Earlier this year there was a hysterical musical sketch was cut and then showed up on YouTube a few weeks later; most of the cast was featured including Shasheer and it was better than anything which aired on the show (I don’t recall the host). It was probably too long for the show. In the recent past we didn’t see much of Jay Pharoah and Pete Davidson, and there was one episode with little or no Leslie Jones, but they were all heavily involved in this episode. What bothers me is that they use Cecily Strong as the go-to female for the wife, girlfriend, news anchor when they could be using Shasheer more often (SNL seems to be afraid of depicting interracial couples when they are becoming more common on tv, in commercials and in the movies).

      • Cy says:

        Excellent points! I feel really sorry for Sasheer!

      • Jodi says:

        Completely agree. I miss Sasheer, think she’s a great and underutilized member of the cast. Many skits I watch and also could see her in the role that too often goes to Cecily, Kate, or Leslie.

  13. Eric Kane says:

    That vacation thing was lame. Dinklage selling it too hard.

  14. Allee says:

    That “glory hole” skit was the type of thing they used to show after 12:30, not before Weekend Update. Painful.

  15. Julie J says:

    With what he had to work with Peter Dinklage himself was outstanding. The skits however were very sub par. The only two that really stand out for me as being actually funny were Nakid and Afraid and Space Pants. The writing needs to improve by a lot for its a shame when SNL had great guests but the episode just isn’t as funny as it should be.

  16. Kevin K says:

    I give it the Peter Dinklage episode of SNL a B. Game of Thrones is an amazing show and I don’t read the books but this is a good episode in my opinion and having the two time Emmy winner (2011 and 2015) hosting for the first time ever. The Naked and Afraid sketch was hilarious as did the Winnie the Pooh one.

  17. frankofile says:

    I sort of enjoyed SPACE PANTS

  18. Dude says:

    The cold open was hardly the worst of the night. It was actually funny unlike the Winnie the Pooh sketch.

  19. Chaya says:

    Dinklage was good – the writers truly failed him.

  20. Tom says:

    Isn’t the “horny Leslie Jones” thing really overly played out by this point?

  21. Nichole says:

    Even Weekend Update laid an egg. All around bad episode.

  22. Jackie says:

    The whole episode was subpar, but Naked and Afraid and Space Pants were lol funny.
    Love Peter Dinklage, tho.

  23. KatsMom says:

    Where the hell was the Drunk Uncle and Peter Drunklage appearance at the Update desk? After that bit awhile back, I said that I wanted to see Dinklage host the show. But, instead of the anticipated reprisal of that, we get Kenan babbling incoherently through a terrible impression of Big Papi? Ugh…

  24. Bruce Wayne says:

    I am a believer in adult tv. This show however I found to be disgusting and smut like obscene. It began at the start and continued to the end.

    This episode should be permanently locked away by NBC, in shame, and never broadcast again. Only if you’re into soft core porn to the extent that it’s an obsession would you ever think of anything on this week’s show to be anything less than vile and putrid.

  25. Allison says:

    I thought the opening monologue was very short. …. …. :)