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10 Best ‘Saturday Night Live’ Sketches From Season 41

From Presidential impersonations to one masterpiece of a game-show sketch, our top ‘SNL’ picks from last season

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Larry David as Bernie Sanders during the "Brooklyn Democratic Debate Cold Open" sketch on April 16th, 2016.

Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty

It began with Miley Cyrus singing about the summer scandals of 2015 and ended with Fred Armisen doing a scathing, straight-faced piss-take on performers' one-man shows. In between, Saturday Night Live's 41st season gave us Larry David as a dead-on Bernie Sanders, both Trump avatars and actual Trumpfoolery, a bunch of unforgettable musical performances, loads of cameos from alumni (Maya Rudolph, your drunk take on "12 Days of Christmas" is worth its weight in two toodle-toos) and a handful of genuinely wonderful sketches. If you've been tuning into Ryan McGee's "3 Sketches You Have to See" posts every week, you've had the chance to catch up with the show's best every Sunday. Now here are the season's best, from Presidential impersonations to an oh-my-god game show skit that belongs in the SNL hall of fame.

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SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- "Julia Louis-Dreyfus" Episode 1701 -- Pictured: (l-r) Kate McKinnon as Hillary Clinton and Larry David as Bernie Sanders during the "Brooklyn Democratic Debate Cold Open" sketch on April 16, 2016 -- (Photo by: Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

2

‘Racists for Trump’

SNL's fake ads were on fire this season — remember that jaw-dropping Guns bit from the Amy Schumer episode, or the premiere's "Abilify" drug commercial for hopeless presidential candidates? This political spot, however, was the year's MVP, as well as one of the show's few Trump-related skits with teeth. Look, it's no secret that the likely Republican party's nominee has been tapping into a collective sense of hate as campaign fuel, which has resulted in some straight-up racist bullshit at his rallies. (That doesn't even take into account some of his questionable associations, either.) But the manner in which this ad calls all this out while deftly sending up the "morning in America" style of most campaign ads is, in a word, brilliant. That moment when Taran Killiam lifts his arm and the swastika armband comes into view still makes us gasp, even after two dozen viewings.

Play video

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- "Julia Louis-Dreyfus" Episode 1701 -- Pictured: (l-r) Kate McKinnon as Hillary Clinton and Larry David as Bernie Sanders during the "Brooklyn Democratic Debate Cold Open" sketch on April 16, 2016 -- (Photo by: Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

1

‘Meet Your Second Wife’

There are SNL game show send-ups, and then there's this sketch: a hilarious, jaw-dropping, yes-we're-going-there bit that felt instantly canon-worthy. We knew that the Christmas episode would be top-notch once we heard Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were hosting, but we didn't expect something that would hold up with the best of the Fey-run writers' room from back in the day. The premise is simple: Contestants (all male, all unsuspecting) get a chance to meet their future second wife. The joke, of course, is that the new spouses are all still young … uncomfortably so, in fact. "I thought this was a home makeover show," one of the current wives say. "In a way, it is," Fey cheerily replies. From the delivery of the lines to the gasps in the audience, everything about this is perfect. It's angry without being righteous, and it's genius without skimping on the laughs. It is Saturday Night Live sketch-comedy at its best.

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