Peyton Manning pokes Mock at SNL’s ‘humiliating attempt at relevance’ amid recent cast exits

The Manning brothers (played by host Miles Teller and Andrew Dismukes) confront the elephant in the room regarding the recent cast exits. Before May’s final, Aidy Bryant, Pete Davidson, Kate McKinnon and Kyle Mooney announced their departures — in addition to the involuntary exits of Aristotle Athari, Alex Moffat and Melissa Villaseñor. More recently, USA TODAY learned Chris Redd would also be exiting after five seasons.

What will “Saturday Night Live!” be like without Kate McKinnon or Chris Redd? Peyton and Eli Manning aren’t too sure.

“There were a lot of changes at the show that could be exciting. Let’s see what they spent the entire summer coming up with,” says Teller with his hilarious impression of Peyton. 

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In the cold open, the football duo do a live analysis of the season premiere— a parody on their “Monday Night Football” ESPN2 show— and groan about the predictable sketches, from repetitive jokes about former President Donald Trump (“way to mix it up,” Peyton quips) to “desperate” Gen Z references.

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Unfortunately the “stats” aren’t too promising: “14 attempted jokes this episode, only 1 mild laugh and 3 chuckles.” But in an attempt to revive the appeal, the brothers summon the actual Jon Hamm to weigh in on the progress. He not only roasts the show’s mediocrity, but also their choice in host.

“Sometimes they need to bring in a real celebrity when the host isn’t that famous,” Hamm says, next to a disgruntled Teller. “I mean, when they couldn’t get the star of the. big summer movie, or Tom Cruise or Jon Hamm, they had to get the co-star.”

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On Saturday, Teller took his first flight with the sketch show Saturday. Along with the “Top Gun” star, four new cast members also made their Studio 8H debut: Marcello Hernandez, Molly Kearney, Michael Longfellow and Devon Walker.

More ‘SNL’ cast shakeups:Chris Redd, Melissa Villaseñor, Alex Moffat, Aristotle Athari exit

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Contributing: Erin Jensen