‘SNL’ says goodbye to Kate McKinnon and Pete Davidson

On Saturday night’s episode, the NBC variety show bid farewell to Kate McKinnon and Pete Davidson in a subtle but emotional way. The show first said goodbye to McKinnon by opening the show with a recreation of one of the comedian’s most memorable skits, “Close Encounter.”

Saturday’s cold open brought back Miss Rafferty from McKinnon – an abducted alien who is going through a tougher experience than her counterparts.

After McKinnon’s Miss Rafferty explained what happened to her (in vivid and raunchy detail, no less) when she was abducted by aliens, two government agents played by Aidy Bryant and Mikey Day explained that she had to now accompany the aliens who had taken her.

This led to a very poignant moment for McKinnon standing on the makeshift spaceship and allowing her character and herself to say goodbye.

“Well, Earth, I love you, thank you for letting me stay a while,” McKinnon’s character said, hand on heart, looking out at the audience.

She then said the show’s catchphrase, “Live…from New York. It’s Saturday night!” This was followed by thunderous applause for McKinnon.

As for Davidson, he got one last segment on “SNL’s” weekend update.

“I never imagined this would be my life,” Davidson said. “Back then I was just a skinny kid no one knew what race I was. And now everyone knows I’m white because I was hugely successful while barely showing up at work. Look at me now, I’m aging like an old banana.”

Davidson added during the segment that “SNL” creator Lorne Michaels told him during his first audition that he didn’t think Davidson was good for the show, but “let’s do this together.”

“And that’s exactly what we did,” Davidson said. “And that’s why people who think I don’t deserve this job shouldn’t hate me, because we have so much in common. For example, I should rather inspire hope that literally anyone could be on ‘Saturday Night Live’.”

Ahead of the show, Davidson gave his official farewell on Saturday via Instagram, writing that he “got to share so much with this audience” and “literally grow in front of your eyes.”

“We were together through the good times and the bad, the happiest times and the darkest,” Davidson continued. “I owe my life to Lorne Michaels and everyone at SNL. I’m so grateful and wouldn’t be here without them.”

Davidson thanked the show for teaching him “life values” and said, “SNL is my home.”

“I’m so happy and sad about tonight’s show. For so many reasons I can’t explain,” he wrote.

Bryant also received a send-off during the weekend update when she appeared alongside Bowen Yang as a recurring trend forecaster character. The segment ended with Bryant declaring “10 great years” as “in” and receiving roses and a kiss on the cheek from Yang and Weekend Update co-host Michael Che.

Variety reported Friday that McKinnon, Davidson, Bryant and Kyle Mooney are all set to leave the show at the end of this season.

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