TV took center stage Saturday night as comedian Kevin Hart helped the folks at “Saturday Night Live” stage a series of TV spoofs.
While we’ve seen “SNL” spoof “Steve Harvey” in the past — featuring Kenan Thompson in the role of the mustachioed Harvey — we don’t recall having seen “SNL” take on “The Walking Dead” or “Shark Tank” previously.
The “Walking Dead” sketch had Hart playing the role of a non-zombie newcomer who has to try hard to convince the group that he’s not a “walker,” but a guy like them who is just trying to survive.
But when the group is distracted for a few seconds, Hart is bitten by a zombie and when the group starts pointing out that he too is now a zombie, the Hart character turns the confrontation into a controversy over race.
In the “Shark Tank” sketch, Hart played a man with an idea that didn’t go over very well with the show’s panel of wealthy investor/entrepreneurs. His plan? To manufacture shades for lampshades.
And in the “Steve Harvey” spoof, Hart played a guest who came on a show devoted to the study of various phobias that “Harvey” (as played by Thompson) unselfconsciously mispronounced. The Hart character’s phobia: A fear of horses.
In one of the more fanciful sketches we’ve seen on “SNL” in a while, the show turned its attention to the conclave of Cardinals that has convened in the Vatican to elect a new pope. In “SNL’s” telling of the story, the selection is someone who makes history as the first black, first female and first child pope. Yes, it was none other than 9 year-old Oscar nominee Quvenzhane Wallis, as played by Hart. Fact is, the sketch also qualified as a TV spoof because it was styled as a CNN report anchored by Wolf Blitzer (Jason Sudeikis).
If you’re unfamiliar with Hart’s stand-up style, you can get a pretty good idea of how he performs from the monologue he delivered at the beginning of “SNL” Saturday night. It’s worth watching not only because it’s funny, but because Hart is one of the hottest comedians out there at the moment.