Brow Beat

Kate McKinnon’s Trip to Visit Santa Claus Didn’t Go Quite the Way She Hoped

By now, Kate McKinnon abduction sketches are their own Saturday Night Live minigenre: She’s been abducted by aliens, had a near death experience, and on this week’s episode, got to meet Santa Claus. Or rather, her friends Cecily Strong and host Casey Affleck got to meet Santa Claus; McKinnon, as per usual, had a slightly different experience. Instead of Santa, she met a nine-foot goat-man named Krinklemaus (some sort of Krampus variant) who made her pull his dogsled—“it wasn’t the worst time I’ve had on all fours,” McKinnon says—before dropping her off at the barn to help an elf named “Shart” check the reindeer for worms. And things really didn’t get better from there.

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On the third go-round, the formula for these sketches is getting a little too apparent—there’s a lot of waiting for McKinnon to start talking again while the framing device creaks along—but McKinnon’s story and delivery are still more than insane enough to outweigh the duller stretches. Besides, shouldn’t there always be room for a sketch that gets euphemisms like “my hog taker and my log maker” onto network television? Whether it’s the work of Santa, Krinklemaus, or even Shart the elf, surely we can all agree that getting Kate McKinnon’s abduction monologues past NBC’s standards and practices is the real Christmas miracle.

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