The 15 Greatest 'Saturday Night Live' Sketches of 2015

by Zach Seemayer 4:46 AM PST, December 31, 2015
Photo: NBC

2015 was a big year for Saturday Night Live. The long-running show concluded its milestone 40th season, it kicked off another predictably successful election year season, it saw the return of Tracy Morgan after his devastating car crash, and it’s had some of the best hosts in recent memory.

So, to celebrate all the laughs, impressive performances and sharp writing we've enjoyed this year, let's take a look at the 15 best sketches of 2015.

Note: This list includes any new episode aired in 2015, which means the second half of season 40 and the first half of season 41. Enjoy!

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15. "Casablanca"

In this reimagining of one of the most iconic scenes in film history, J.K. Simmons kills with his Humphrey Bogart/Rick Blaine impression and Kate McKinnon's frantic, desperate Ingrid Bergman/Ilsa Lund makes you laugh out loud every time.

14. "Porn Teacher"

Amy Schumer plays a porn star role-playing as a naughty school teacher. Kyle Mooney plays a porn star role-playing as a bad student who needs to be taught a sexy lesson. Aidy Bryant plays a clueless classmate who doesn't understand the whole thing is a porno. It's amazing.

13. "Yo! Where Jackie Chan at Right Now"

Tracy Morgan was hilarious in his triumphant return to the SNL stage after recovering from a life-threatening car accident. This sketch about a weird, hilariously specific public access talk show stands out as a sketch that would be funny whenever it aired, and could have even worked when Morgan was still a cast member years ago.

12. "Picture Perfect"

This is the perfect kind of edgy SNL sketch that manages to push the envelope and be politically relevant while still being legitimately funny. Also, it's nice to see people remembering the existence of Reginald VelJohnson.

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11. "Blazer"

In this parody of cheesy 1970s cop dramas, Taran Killam stars as Blazer, a cop who plays by his own rules! Oh, and he is super racist. Not only is the sketch funny, it also has a point to make. Also, it makes us want to see Killam star as a loose-cannon cop, albeit one who's less of a bigot.

10. "High School Theater Show With Elizabeth Banks"

This is the third time SNL has tried this kind of sketch, but it’s the first time it's come together perfectly. Plus, the parody of pedantic high school theater students is spot-on.

9. "Santa Baby"

This weird, hilarious SNL short film stars Ryan Gosling and Vanessa Bayer as a couple who deeply believe that Santa Claus is real – and also they're insane. It's like a cross between Natural Born Killers and A Christmas Story.

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8. "Neurotology Music Video"

Coming out right on the heels of HBO's Scientology expose Going Clear, this uncomfortably realistic music video for the "Church of Neurotology" was a brave criticism of the real church they were mocking (even if there is a bit of a cop-out by specifically saying Neurotology isn't Scientology, but that’s presumably so SNL wouldn't get sued off the face of the Earth).

7. "Star Wars Auditions"

Daisy Ridley gazing longingly into Michael Buble's eyes and Bobby Moynihan's George Lucas impression are already enough to sell this sketch, and everything else is just delicious, hilarious gravy.

6. "Guns"

Amy Schumer has been an outspoken advocate for gun control reform ever since the shooting at a screening of her film Trainwreck back in July. So it was great to see her using her SNL platform to take a pointed, funny jab at American gun culture.

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5. "WWE Promo Shoot"

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Bobby Moynihan star as two wrestlers who are smack-talking each other in a promo for an upcoming match. Then, things get insanely dark very quickly. The twist at the end of this sketch might be one of the darkest things in SNL history.

4. "Close Encounter"

Everyone freaked out over Ryan Gosling's adorable giggle-fit during this sketch about three friends recounting their recent alien abduction. But it's Kate McKinnon's brilliant storytelling that sells it. There's a reason everyone else in this sketch kept breaking, and it's because McKinnon is impossibly funny.

3. "A Thanksgiving Miracle"

Better known as "Adele Saves Thanksgiving," this sketch is not only a great excuse to listen to "Hello" again, but also nails what it's like to celebrate Thanksgiving with people you can only barely tolerate.

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2. "First Got Horny 2 U"

Yet another amazing original song from SNL, "First Got Horny 2 U" is awkward, twisted, funny and uncomfortably relatable from start to finish – and it's also filled with '90s nostalgia, but in the most bizarre way imaginable.

1. "Meet Your Second Wife"

It's no surprise that besties (and SNL alums) Tina Fey and Amy Poehler make for great co-hosts, but this dark, edgy game show sketch still stands out from the entire first half of season 41 for its biting commentary and it's timelessness. It doesn't rely on pop culture references or slapstick humor, just painful awkwardness and twisted humor.

SNL returns live, hosted by Star Wars: The Force Awakens star Adam Driver, on Jan. 16 at 11:35 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.

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