Monday, July 22, 2024

“SNL” with Shane Gillis, 21 Savage was Not a A Hit: 10th Highest Show of Season


Getting “SNL” ratings has been a struggle this season.

After a couple of weeks in, NBC stopped releasing linear numbers for the network broadcast show. They just announced a total that couldn’t be verified including streaming on Peacock.

So it’s instructive to learn that last week’s show — with Shane Gillis hosting and 21 Savage as musical guest — was a dud.

Total viewers came to just 3.99 million, placing the episode at 10th so far of the season. The only good news was that nearly a million of those people were aged 18-25. Adults didn’t tune in.

The lack of transparency about the ratings may be because they just haven’t been great. According to, the Emma Stone hosted show on December 2nd was also low rated.

Last night’s show was pretty good, with a surprisingly enjoyable Sydney Sweeney hosting and a sublime Kacey Musgraves as musical guest. Sweeney’s “Anyone But You” co-star Glen Powell even pitched in. The best indication that people tuned in is that Kacey’s songs that she performed each went top 20 on iTunes.

The only dud in the bunch of sketches was the cold open. Like last week, it seemed short and had no punch. Is this a new strategy? It’s not working.

“Weekend Update” continues to save the show. But the cast still seems a little adrift. I love Ego Nwodim, and Marcello Hernandez has taken off. But there’s a sense of authority missing. There’s no real leading man or woman (or anything else).

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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