Jason Sudeikis smiles during his Saturday Night Live monologue

Jason Sudeikis Brought Big Ted Lasso Energy to His SNL Monologue

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Jason Sudeikis hosted Saturday Night Live this weekend and it was, overall, a joy of an episode. Sudeikis brought back a number of his old characters from his time as a cast member, including the Devil and his more freewheeling, fun-loving take on Joe Biden. He also revived the always delightful “What’s Up With That?”

But one of the biggest highlights of the night was his opening monologue, which was full of big Ted Lasso earnestness.

Sudeikis commented on the success of his Apple TV+ show and how surprising it’s been. “It’s truly shocking to me,” he said, “because it’s built around two things Americans hate: soccer and kindness.”

Sudeikis then proceeds to infuse a whole lot of that kindness into his monologue, asking everyone from the audience to the crew to take a second and look around and appreciate where they are.

“This place is historic. Just, for a second, look around. Like for real. Even all you amazing people who work in the crew,” he said, pointing at people offstage and appearing to make direct, very Ted lasso-esque eye contact with them.

“Just look around for a second. Think about all the brilliance that’s happened in here. All your favorite sketches–Wild and Crazy Guys, Gilly, Cow Bell, Waynes World, all happened right here, in here, where you are,” he implored.

All of our collective comedy heroes have run around through here: Farley, Gilda, Eddy, Tina. And over here, you’ve got where all the music happens” he said, walking over towards the music side of the stage, the camera following him. “All that music–Elvis Costello, Kanye, Nirvana, The Rolling Stones–in here.”

Basically, his monologue was this moment brought to life in Studio 8H:

The entire AFC Richmond team touching the Believe Sign in Ted Lasso
image: Apple TV+

“This place changed my life, twice,” Sudeikis said, wrapping up. “Once as a cast member, as a writer. But more importantly, as a kid watching from home. And there’s a good chance that if you’re watching tonight, there is probably something from this place that probably changed your life too.”

Sudeikis ended on a classic self-deprecating note, saying this specific episode isn’t likely to change anyone’s life if it’s their first time watching. But honestly, I don’t think that’s true. Sudeikis spent a decade working on SNL, then went on to have a thriving career in film and television, now having co-created a beloved character on his own television show. And now he’s returned to host the show that launched his career.

If that isn’t an inspiration to kids like him watching from home, I don’t know what could be.

(image: YouTube)
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Vivian Kane
Vivian Kane (she/her) is the Senior News Editor at The Mary Sue, where she's been writing about politics and entertainment (and all the ways in which the two overlap) since the dark days of late 2016. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she gets to put her MFA to use covering the local theatre scene. She is the co-owner of The Pitch, Kansas City’s alt news and culture magazine, alongside her husband, Brock Wilbur, with whom she also shares many cats.