Who Scored Big in Week Eight of SNL's Not-Ready-for-Prime-Time-Player Relevancy Poll?

This week's Robert De Niro-hosted episode was not a good time to be a featured player on Saturday Night Live -- or even a regular cast member who struggles for airtime (ahem, Abby Elliott). Save for his monologue and a pretty awkward "Mr. Produce" sketch, De Niro was delivered A-material that did a pretty solid job at hiding his faults as a host -- which, of course, also means we were given three (!) recurring sketches: "What Up With That?", "Blizzard Man" and "Vinny Vedecci." As this week's poll clearly shows, it was a week for the veterans.

The NRFPTP Relevancy Poll is driven by a proprietary algorithm involving such factors as quality airtime and this week, the ability to hide your host's pretty glaring limitations. If your results differ, let's hear about it.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg1. Bill Hader (Last Week: 2)

Hader pretty much dominated the evening, marking his third time at the top of this list in eight weeks. Vedecci alone can vault Hader to the top; add in his role for the "Wikileaks" sketch, "Party at Mr. Bernard's" and his under-appreciated role as the begrudged Lindsey Buckingham, it was a great night for Hader.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg2. Andy Samberg (Last Week: 12)

Right behind Hader was his partner in the "Mr. Bernard" sketch, who also had his own recurring sketch, "Blizzard Man," get some prime real estate. Not to mention that Samberg was the saving grace of "Update" as a hanging-upside-down actor from Broadway's Spider-Man. And he also slept with a guy that looked like Gandalf for a drink.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg3. Bobby Moynihan (Last Week: 1)

Moynihan was the only cast member who can still be described as relatively new who had any sort of presence on Saturday night's episode -- which is a very good sign for Moynihan. Sure, he had one of the best sketches of the night as a Robert De Niro-hating Meet the Parents fan, but his recurring role as Vinny Vedecci's son gets me every time.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg4. Kenan Thompson (Last Week: 9)

Well, let's see... Kenan had a nice supporting role in the "Blizzard Man" sketch and he... It doesn't matter. "What's Up With That?" aired this week. That's all it takes. I mean, the man danced with Boba Fett!

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg5. Jason Sudeikis (Last Week: 10)

Here's where things get incredibly tricky: Sudeikis is ranked fifth, but he didn't necessarily have an incredibly strong week. The four names above pretty much dominated the show. However, Sudeikis had a good showing in the "It's a Living" sketch and, of course, his dancing during "What Up With That?" almost fueled that sketch on its own. Also, if you've been wondering where Sudeikis has been hiding this season, this is a really great breakdown of what the loss of Will Forte has meant to Sudeikis.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg6. Seth Meyers (Last Week: 3)

Not so much for his "Update" performance, but rather his ability as head writer to craft a show around Robert De Niro and make it work.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg7. Kristen Wiig (Last Week: 8)

Not a huge week for Wiig, but she had a nice Update bit as a coked-out aerobics instructor. Also, I did love her initial reaction in the "Weekend at Mr. Bernard's" Digital Short.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg8. Fred Armisen (Last Week: 4)

Armisen gets this spot almost by default. Some ensemble work, a blink-and-you'll-miss-him turn as Obama and his customary role as a pizza-eating director on the "Vinny Vedecci" show. Yep, that's how bad it was for the featured players.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg9 (tie). Nasim Pedrad (Last Week: 11) Pedrad, Elliott and Bayer's only real contribution to the show was a pretty terrible send up of the Kardashian sisters. How can I possibly rank one over the other when they all pretty much played the same terrible characters? Anyway, compared to the bottom three, at least they got to make a contribution at all.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg9 (tie). Vanessa Bayer (Last Week: 5)

See above.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg9 (tie). Abby Elliott (Last Week: 6)

Again, see above.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg12. Paul Brittain (Last Week: 14)

Why is Brittain ranked higher than Pharoah and Killam, considering the lack of airtime for all three? At least Brittain won Will Forte's old job as "guy who sits a the table and eats spaghetti with Fred Armisen" in the "Vinny Vedecci" sketches. Hey, Brittain: Seriously pitch some more "'Sex' Ed" sketches, and pitch them like your life depended on them. (And because the first one was so great.)

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg13. Taran Killam (Last Week: 13) I said it two weeks ago: The fate of Killam and Brittain seem very intertwined. Unfortunately, that means that this week they both had very little to do.

snl_poll_jay_pharoah.jpg14. Jay Pharoah (Last Week: 7)

Was Pharoah even at the show on Saturday? Perhaps this was punishment for busting out his Obama impression on Letterman.


  • Scraps says:

    Seriously, someone take Eli Manning's picture down and get a real photo of Sudekis...

  • anon says:

    But Nasim had a hefty straight man role in Little Fockers and Vanessa a funny Hilary Clinton. Another one of Will Forte's roles, the announcer for What Up With That? was taken over by Taran.