September 11th, 2014

Michael Che and Colin Jost to Anchor 'SNL's Weekend Update Next Season; More Hires on the Way

Earlier tonight, Saturday Night Live announced a pretty big surprise change for next season: Former SNL writer and current Daily Show correspondent Michael Che is returning to NBC to co-anchor Weekend Update. According to Bill Carter at The New York Times, Che has been chosen to replace Cecily Strong at the Update desk next season, and Che has confirmed on Twitter that he'll be leaving The Daily Show to take on the new SNL gig. Strong — who joined the Update desk alongside Seth Meyers back in 2013 — will remain on the cast as a repertory player; she reportedly requested the change herself so she could appear in more sketches. Che and Jost's pairing will make the very first two-man Weekend Update team.

According to the NYT report, Lorne Michaels has been trying out different Update anchor combinations over the past few weeks. "Michael is a strong writer and he's really funny," Michaels said. "It's always difficult to make changes and make Update different from what's gone before." On last year's incarnation of Update with Jost and Strong, Michaels said it "struggled to find an identity last season. Because what had come before had been pretty brilliant."

So what other changes can we expect on SNL next year? If you're hoping for some new cast members, Michaels confirmed that with NYT, noting that he would "probably be making one or two more additions to the cast this season but that he had not yet reached a decision." As for the three-hour 40th anniversary special planned for February, Michaels has decided that instead of airing the previous week's SNL repeats at 10:00pm every Saturday, this season he'll instead run one episode from each of the show's 40 seasons, which will be condensed from 90 minutes to an hour but include the original musical performances.

Here's our interview with Che from this summer, and check out a clip of him from our standup film A Night at Whiplash below: READ MORE

Today's Funniest Tweets

Watch Paul F. Tompkins Hilariously Fail at Punchlines on '@midnight'

Comedy Central just released the above blooper from tonight's @midnight featuring panelists Paul F. Tompkins, John Hodgman, and Greg Proops. Despite his perfect 1930s newsreel-style voice, Tompkins has some trouble delivering his punchlines, which leads to an interesting revelation about the birth of podcasts.

Jeffrey Tambor Made a Handy Guide to Binge-Watching 'Arrested Development'

Arrested Development's lovable patriarch Jeffrey Tambor made a new video with The Tonight Show that's super helpful if you have plans to binge-watch AD anytime soon. Whether you're an experienced AD viewer or an intimidated newbie, Tambor's tips will help you binge-watch the right way — comfort, mouth hygiene, confidence, and baked potatoes are key.

Bill Burr's 'Live at Andrew's House' Is Out on Vinyl September 30th

Comedy vinyl lovers can add a new album to their collection when Bill Burr releases Live at Andrew's House later this month. Recorded live at his November 2011 Carnegie Hall performance, Live at Andrew's House will given a special release on September 30th through Third Man Records only on vinyl, with pre-sale orders starting next week on September 16th. "As a standup comedian, to get to perform at Carnegie Hall is a milestone; so when I found out that I got that gig I knew I wanted to document the performance," Burr said in a press release. "Most of the material on this album is the same material that eventually became the special You People Are All the Same and I didn't want to screw over people by putting out two DVDs with similar material. So this is a special release of that performance that will be on vinyl only."

This Week in Comedy Podcasts: Rob Corddry Makes It Weird

The comedy podcast universe is ever expanding, not unlike the universe universe. We're here to make it a bit smaller, a bit more manageable. There are a lot of great shows and each has a lot of great episodes, so we want to highlight the exceptional, the noteworthy. Each week our crack team of podcast enthusiasts and specialists and especially enthusiastic people will pick their favorites. We hope to have your ears permanently plugged with the best in aural comedy.

You Made It Weird - Rob Corddry

You-Made-It-WeirdSCOTT: Rob Corddry (Children’s Hospital, Hot Tub Time Machine) makes it weird with Pete Holmes this week on a lot of levels. Out of the gate, one of the first major topics is the time Corddry’s mom asked him to come home for Father’s Day so she could come out of the closet as a lesbian. Almost an hour of talk about therapy, overloving mothers, and the magical story of how Corddry met his wife, they realized they never got very far into the lesbian mom story. Or any story for that matter. Oh well. Holmes just came from therapy and he’s going with the flow. There’s very little talk of comedy or career here, with the two men preferring to drift into the depths of discussions about the nature of reality, freudian egos, and the afterlife. But while there’s plenty of weird to go around, the weirdest thing of all is Holmes referencing an episode of YMIW that is apparently all about him hooking his brain up to a machine that controls his DVD player – an episode he insists will have come out by the time we’re listening to this one. Let’s hope that’s just a scheduling mishap and not a reference to another episode doomed to wander the podcast plains, un-listened-to, like the oft-mentioned but never-heard Janeane Garofalo episode. READ MORE

Fox Is Developing a Comedy Starring John Stamos from 'Office' Writer Danny Chun

Fox might be adding another single-cam comedy to its lineup with today's news that they've given a put-pilot commitment to an untitled show starring John Stamos. Written by former Simpsons and Office writer Danny Chun and executive produced by Stamos and Dan Fogelman (The Neighbors), the series centers on Stamos playing a version of himself as "a charismatic longtime bachelor whose life is upended when he discovers he's a father — and a grandfather." In addition to the Fox pilot, Stamos will also star on an ABC drama called Members Only as well as an in-the-works Full House reboot, which is reportedly being considered by Netflix as a new show.


Saturday Night's Children: O'Hara, Hudson, Prager, and Wolf

With only a few names left in this series, this week we're highlighting four former cast members instead of one who, for different reasons, have been grouped together for a special edition of lesser known SNL players. Whether they quit the show before their first episode, left no trace of their history after leaving the show, or flew under the radar despite being co-head writer, these four players are both a mix of famous and unknown writers and performers whose connection to SNL often goes forgotten. Here they are, in no particular order: READ MORE

Will Ferrell Wants to Play Video Games with You for Charity

If your biggest dream is to win a half-eaten bag of Skittles and the chance to play video games with Will Ferrell, his newest charity push "Will Ferrell's SuperMegaBlastMax Gamer Challenge" might make those dreams come true. Ferrell has set up an Indiegogo campaign at WillFerrellHatesCancer.org to raise $375,000 for children and families suffering from cancer, and everyone who donates at least $10 to the cause will be eligible to win a free video game session with him broadcast live on Twitch.

Aziz Ansari on Selling Out Madison Square Garden and the Business Side of Comedy

Aziz Ansari might be a TV star on NBC's five-year favorite Parks and Recreation and soon-to-be published author, but performing live standup has always been his main love. Ansari recently finished up several dates on the Oddball tour and kicked off his own tour Aziz Ansari Live!, becoming only the seventh comedian to sell out New York City's Madison Square Garden in the process. I recently got the chance to talk with Ansari all about his new tour as well as what it feels like to sell out the Garden, how he's working to make buying tickets a stress-free experience, and what we can expect from next year's series finale of Parks and Rec. READ MORE

'The Simpsons' Are Crossing Over with 'The Simpsons'

In addition to the upcoming Family Guy and Futurama crossover episodes of The Simpsons, Entertainment Weekly reports that there's also another crossover in the works — a Simpsons/Simpsons one. Set to air on October 19th as this year's Treehouse of Horror episode, the crossover will be a parody of The Others and follow the Simpsons as they "are haunted by another ghostly family living in the house," played by the original 1987 version of the Simpsons from The Tracey Ullman Show.

While the Ullman version Simpsons have made a few cameos in recent years, next month's crossover will be the first to prominently feature them, and the voice cast will "summon their original voices" for the Ullman-era Simpsons too: "People remember Dan's, but Nancy's different too," said executive producer Al Jean. "It was lower-register, and you can see in the difference of this segment. It was really funny to get the interplay [between the two versions of the Simpsons] and for the actors to see the voice evolution. The great thing is we didn't have to ask — we already had the cast hired for the Tracy Ullman Simpsons."

Nick Offerman Tells Jimmy Fallon About His College Sexual Adventures

Here's a clip from last night's Tonight Show with guest Nick Offerman, who tells Fallon all about the garment-based sexual code he had with his college roommate as well as returning to the University of Illinois to gift them with a Japanese gazebo. Click through to watch Offerman's "Unqualified Advice" segment, which is full of great tips on school, love, and the new iPhone. READ MORE

Today's Funniest Tweets

"Using this anthology structure, the show captures a wide swath of personalities, and while they include a cross-dressing father, a self-described asexual who does magic tricks and a homeless woman who dates for shelter, High Maintenance is not predictably quirky. It’s humane, superbly acted (by many unfamiliar faces) and as blasé about eccentricity as, well, a born New Yorker. Sometimes this style can turn into a gushing love letter to the city, depicted as a benign playground for grown-ups with no serious consequences. But the visual ambition here complements this sunny mood and makes you forgive it."

- Ben Sinclair and Katja Blichfeld's web series High Maintenance gets some praise from The New York Times today alongside Sound Advice, Little Horribles, and Augie, Alone.