SNL launched its 39th season with a strong episode, ably hosted by Tina Fey, who introduced the show's six new featured players and put them through an SNL rite of passage during the monologue. (The group's lack of diversity was acknowledged in a later sketch, featuring Lorne Michaels). Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul made several cameos. Cecily Strong joined Seth Meyers on the Weekend Update anchor desk, following a pep talk from Fey. Musical guest Arcade Fire performed "Afterlife" and "Reflektor."
Cold open--Obama (Jay Pharoah) attempts to explain the benefits of the Affordable Care Act with help from ordinary citizens like Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul), whose friend, stricken with cancer in the days before Obamacare, "did what any of us would have done"... (Also featuring Taran Killam as a Dr. Seuss-spouting Ted Cruz).
Introducing the new season of Girls, with Hannah (new SNL featured player Noël Wells), Marnie (Cecily Strong), Jessa (Kate McKinnon), Shoshanna (Vanessa Bayer) ... and Blerta, the new girl from Albania (Tina Fey).
Commercial--Aaron Paul & friends for E-Meth. ("Without my meth pipe, I don't know what to do with my hands...")
Game Show--Tina Fey and Lorne Michaels try to distinguish between SNL's new cast members and the band Arcade Fire.
Drunk Uncle (Bobby Moynihan) drops by Weekend Update with Meth Nephew, Aaron Paul.
Also: Flight 314 to Dallas begins the boarding process ("Now boarding First Class, X-Men First Class, X-Man Business Class, Elite Farters..."); Cinema Classics looks back at a forgotten 1940s gem showcasing the work of a mentally challenged taxidermist; Rick, of "Crazy Rick's Model Ts," pioneers the first used car commercial with his creepy wife, Daisy (Tina Fey); ex-porn stars (Vanessa Bayer and Cecily Strong) are back, promoting Manolo Blahniks ("Other shoes are flat, and for nurses..."), joined by Tina Fey.
NEXT, on October 6: Miley Cyrus as host and musical guest.