It’s easy to picture the writers at “Saturday Night Live” being overwhelmed with the number of pop-culture fiascos to skewer this week. Lance Armstrong’s controversial doping confession to Oprah Winfrey, Manti Te’o’s fictional girlfriend, and Jodie Foster’s not-quite-out speech at the Golden Globe Awards show all proved, unsurprisingly, to be successful fodder during the cold open of the show.
The episode, hosted by Jennifer Lawrence, star of "Silver Linings Playbook" and "The Hunger Games," was the first of 2013.
Trading his impression of a bland Mitt Romney for his impression of a bland Armstrong, Jason Sudeikis played on the perception that the disgraced cyclist isn’t sorry about using steroids and only used the Winfrey interview as a public-relations opportunity. That impression was imprinted during the first half of their conversation Thursday night, when Armstrong admitted harassing and threatening one of his critics, but excused himself because he never called her “fat.”
During an interview with Piers Morgan (played by Taran Killam), Sudeikis’ Armstong is questioned about how unlikable he appeared during the Winfrey interview.
“Who said that!? Who? They’re fat b---hes!” Sudeikis-as-Armstong shouted before saying, “All I actually did was steroids, testosterone, human growth hormone, EPO, and I replaced all of my blood with better blood.”
Then he added: “A lot of the reason I yelled was because of the cancer I had, which is not an excuse, unless you think it is. The most important thing is I never, ever called anyone a fat b---h.”
Killam-as-Morgan then turned the camera on star University of Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o, played with an open-mouth gaze by Bobby Moynihan. Although Morgan told Te’o several times his girlfriend, Lennay, was just the product of an elaborate hoax, the news did not seem to sink in. Ever.
“Well, a couple months ago, she called me up on the phone, and she was like ‘Hey, I have bad news, I’m dead,’” Moynihan-as-Te’o said. “And I said, ‘Oh no! Do you need a ride to the funeral?’ But she said, ‘No, it’s OK, my body is being shot into outer space, so you don’t need to show up or ask any questions about it.’”
Rounding out the “SNL” cold open was Kate McKinnon’s impression of Foster’s speech at the Golden Globes show in which the actress implied she is a lesbian, but did not seem to entirely get her point across. On "SNL," McKinnon-as-Foster is at a similar crossroad, as she turns “gay” into “game” and “lesbian” into “Leslie Nielsen.”