Brow Beat

Aidy Bryant Can’t Keep a Straight Face During Kate McKinnon’s Weird Tale of the Afterlife

Usually Saturday Night Live buries its weirdest skits in the last 10 minutes, but this week they practically opened with one, a doozy about near-death experiences. Brie Larson and Cecily Strong got the standard deal: tunnels of light, dead loved ones, the embrace of an angel. Kate McKinnon’s experience was, let’s say, a little different. The skit works on two levels: the truly bizarre details of McKinnon’s experience (best left unspoiled) and her winning descriptions of both her cut-rate afterlife and her unfortunate wardrobe malfunction.

McKinnon nails this, and it was too much for Aidy Bryant, who barely makes it through the line, “Do dogs have a special significance in your life?” (Bobby Moynihan seems to be carefully avoiding eye contact for similar reasons.) It’s easy to understand; the relish with which McKinnon tells her story is infectious, and the pause in “Well … again I stray from the pack here,” is perfect. As with most of McKinnon’s work, it’s best experienced while not on national television trying to play the straight man, as the clip makes clear.