From Easy A to Crazy, Stupid, Love., we've gotten used to Emma Stone being the best thing about the mediocre movies she appears in. That was definitely the case with her sophomore hosting gig on Saturday Night Live this past weekend. Sketch for sketch, it was a sub-par week, but Stone kept us smiling with the sheer force of her goofy charisma, handling some truly terrible material with good-natured aplomb. Here are her five best characters in otherwise lame skits (minus "Les Jeunes des Paris").
This is exactly what we're talking about. As a sketch, "Bridal Shower Gifts" is objectively terrible and would have been complete unwatchable had Stone not completely committed to her nightmare of a shower guest -- who seemed like a cross between Pat (of It's Pat fame) and The Simpsons' Crazy Cat Lady -- by adopting a deep baritone and terrible posture. Awful skit, funny performance.
Best Line: Honestly, most of the lines were godawful but we do cop to smiling at Stone's summation of her sex movie gift, Twink Summer: "90 minutes, one hundred twinks, one unforgettable summer."
4. Charlene Stumpfries
Sending up her '60s-era Southern good girl from The Help, Stone assumed the ditzy persona of this 1964 Miss America winner hailing from the great state of Georgia. Even a lame punchline involving her "puss" didn't throw her off her game and we give her bonus points for convincingly making out with a ventriloquist's dummy.
Best Line: "Our state bird's the peach!"
"We're Going to Make Technology Hump" probably sounded like a great idea for a sketch at 3 AM the night before the first full dress rehearsal. In execution though, it was a one-joke premise -- let's watch an iPad have fake sexual intercourse with an Xbox controller! -- that overstayed its welcome. But we liked Stone's perky presence as one of the show's two hosts. We really believed that she liked watching technology hump.
Best Line: "Call me a hopeless romantic, but this lady needs a little dialogue before the action."
Stuck beside an upside-down Andy Samberg in full Spider-Man get-up shouting out terrible spider-related puns, Stone showed off her trademark sarcastic wit and won our hearts by dancing along to the house band's impromptu jam music as the show cut to commercial. She definitely seemed more at ease than the dude who's actually playing Spider-Man in the movie; poor Andrew Garfield had a deer-in-headlights look throughout his brief appearance. (We know he's a good actor based on The Social Network, but after putting up with Tobey Maguire's mopey face for three movies, we really want the new web-slinger to be the funny, friendly neighborhood Spider-Man we know from the comic book.)
Best Line: "Not to be confused with Spider-Man's other girlfriend Mary Jane Watson, who is a skank and doesn't love him like I do."
Not just last night's best sketch, but also one of our favorite recurring bits, the latest installment of "Les Jeunes de Paris" -- a hilarious send-up of all things French-related -- found Stone (who also starred in the skit's inaugural appearance on her first outing as SNL host in October 2010) and Taran Killam playing two young Francophiles who break up, reunite, get married and have a midget baby all the while dancing along to the beat of an awesome French pop tune. (We especially loved the shout-out to the classic 1956 short film, The Red Balloon.) Sadly, this clip isn't currently available on Hulu, but trust us -- it was tres fantastique.
Best Line: This skit isn't really about the dialogue since it's all in French anyway; Stone's best moment was using a loaf of French bread to break open a locked door.
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