Tonight Chris Pine became the third Star Trek captain to host Saturday Night Live, following in the footsteps of William Shatner and Patrick Stewart. Unsurprisingly, SNL used the opportunity to do a Trek sketch. The premise involved a TV Land documentary showing unaired footage of a “Lost Episode” of the original Star Trek featuring a zany new character named “Spocko.” Pine plays Shatner playing Kirk. Check it out.
More clips of Pine on SNL
Here is Chris’ monologue where he explains, in song, how he is Chris Pine and not Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pratt or Chris Evans.
That wasn’t the end of Pine showing off his moves; he was singing and dancing in pretty much every sketch. Here he is having a ‘cotton candy dance party’ caught by police surveillance:
And in a Slavic music video:
Chris also led the in-house band on the “Where in the World Is Kellyanne Conway?”sketch.
Then there was this one featuring a lip-sync battle with some mechanics who happened to also be big fans of Ru Paul’s Drag Race.
Then, more singing in a sketch about a couple’s game night.
But it wasn’t all singing and dancing. Here’s Chris is in a (non-musical) reality show parody.
Their Handmaid’s Tale parody had Chris, but no singing or dancing in this one either.
The return of the original SNL Sulu
Longtime fans of SNL will recognize production designer Akira Yoshimura playing Sulu in Pine’s Star Trek sketch. He has been with the show since the 70s and first played Sulu in the classic “Star Trek: The Last Voyage” sketch back in 1976.
Yoshimura reprised the role when William Shatner hosted in 1986 for the “Star Trek V: The Restaurant Enterprise” sketch.
So what did you think of Chris Pine’s turn on SNL? Sound off below in the comments.
Keep up with all the Star Trek celebrity news at TrekMovie.
Wow, the Star Trek skit was incredibly stupid. Chris Pine was a very good sport to put up with it!
ALL their sketches are incredibly stupid. SNL isn’t even .0001 of what it was even 15 years ago. I should stop recording it but I still do it out of respect for what it once was.
It’s been a long time since I saw it; I was thinking of what it was like during the Chevy Chase era. Sorry to hear it has declined.
Well, Thank You TrekMovie.
Just saw Guardians II. Pretty damn good.
Almost as good as Guardians of the Parking Lot!
“Chris Pine was a very good sport to put up with it!”
To quote Scotty, “Why? How do we know he didn’t invent the thing?”
What did I just witness?
Man, what’s it say about me that I recognized “Sulu” immediately from the original SNL Star Trek skit–from way back in ’76! Amazing that guy is STILL with the show! http://snl.wikia.com/wiki/Akira_Yoshimura
NBC is the reason Star Trek was taken off the air. They’ve made up for it in spades over the years with SNL’s parodies. Belushi and Chase were the bomb, and Shatner’s convention take a close second.
Is there a reason NBC doesn’t allow these clips to be seen outside the US?
I’m in the UK and just watched it …
Gotta say it was quite awful!!!
Was this meant to be funny???
Broadcast licensing restrictions
I wonder as well , it’s damn annoying. I’m only in Canada it’s not like I’m in China trying to pirate it lol
Making America great again!
I watched this then vomited my own blood. I hope Pine got a high pay cheque for this cringeworthy crap …
only the house was funny, is the writer`s guild on strike after all?
1. Chris Pine don’t have no comic chops!
2. The Vulcan ears were all wrong.
3. The set was awful; why not recreate ‘The Last Voyage’ set?
4. The script writer? Ain’t no Michael O’Donoghue!
Fred Freiberger actually did something very similar to Spocko when he cast a lawyer he knew in the part of “Gorgan” from “And The Children Shall Lead,” just because they were friends. Which makes casting Spocko look like genius.
Is that how Belli’s casting went? Never really knew. I assumed for a while that Belli was handling Shatner’s divorce, and the good Captain threw his weight around. Shatner’s (first) divorce was ongoing in the third season. According to Joan Winston, Shatner had moved out of his house at that time (something my lawyer told me not to do during my divorce, but I’ll end that there.) Afterward, I found out that Belli was not a divorce, but a torts, lawyer.
Humor. It is a difficult concept.
The skits…C+. That said, Chris Pine is fine!
Chris Pine sucks. A lousy actor.
Jesus you’re such a lousy troll, no nuance. You need better lessons. Join me and I will complete your training. First of all, replace “Chris Pine” with “William Shatner” and your post will make sense. As it is, it’s just more TOS fan teeth grinding that Trek has moved away from horrible acting and cheesy sets and rubber aliens and horribly boring stories about nothing.
“Horribly boring stories about nothing.” Really Harry, if no Trek plot ever resonated with you, what are you doing here? Lately I mostly just check in here to see what absolutely moronic thing you’re going to say next. You are no Star Trek fan. You have rage, Man. Deal with that.
When I did I say “no trek plot ever resonated with” me? I was talking about TOS. That show never resonated with me. To this day I can’t watch that drek trek. Trek started to interest me with Trek 2,3,4 and TNG. There’s maybe a handful of TOS that I can tolerate. As for this rage insinuation, you don’t know how trolling works. No rage is needed. :D
Indeed, Trek has moved away from all that. But at the same time, it moved towards even worse acting, even cheesier sets and even more boring stories.
As for aliens, the only difference is that modern Trek has more budget to spend on silly putty. :-P
A lot of Trek is boring and has bad acting. Voyager is a great example. Big budgets also don’t mean much when almost the entire TNG series of films sucked a$$
I gave up after the first 30 minutes. SNL still has terrible writing, despite the big ratings boost it’s gotten from its Trump skits. As for the Trek skit, I love Pine’s Shat impression and his willingness to go silly. The rest is a mess. The audience laughs at Sulu, because… nervous laugh at middle age guy who’s the only Asian they could find to sit in the seat. Yeah, that’s great comedy. Sheesh.
It’s an SNL production designer playing Sulu, who has played Sulu on previous Trek spoofs throughout the show’s history. Even if the sketch was “meh”, it was nice to see him reprise his “role”.
Ah! He had a bemused look on his face. He always gets to be Sulu!
I thought it was. Still makes it look like they have only one go to Asian. In any case, Pine outshone the material.
Pine has more than enough charisma and star quality for another few Nu Trek movies. Do Paramount want him though? Its taking them forever to decide what comes next and all the while the cast are ageing already we are 3 years minimum away from another movie its looking less and less likely.
I don;t think lack of confidence in the actors is the problem– money is. For a film that will inevitably cost 100-150M (thanks to the rising stars themselves, and big SFX)– and a shrinking box office take, it’s not really adding up. There are two choices in my mind:
1) roll the dice, make a great movie, and hope the positive critical reception to Beyond bleeds over into the receipts for the next one.
2) slash the budget, hope the stars take pay cuts, and make the movie less action/FX driven.
There are pros and cons to both. If they’re wrong on #1, they could stand to lose a LOT of money. They could also find that the only reason people go see these movies is the big FX, and lose a ton of money even on a small budget, if they go with #2.
All considered though, i’d opt for #2, if you could get a good enough script to convince Saldana, Quinto, and Pine to take massive pay cuts.
Sadly your opinion of his attributes has not crossed into his career. No one is making movies because he’s Chris Pine. I was actually taken aback that they kept identifying Pine with Trek as his main credit when compared to the other Chris’ in the opening sketch.
As STB proved, it only takes about 18 months to bring a ST movie to the box office from commencement, so no, not necessarily 3 years away. If they threw themselves into it now, they could probably get a film to screen in 2 years. Either way 3-4 years is the timeframe established for these films, and even then a 5th film would face the same uncertain future all the others have so far, especially with the cast out of contract options that would need to be renegotiated. All things considered, pouring resources into getting another Trek film with the current cast into the theaters within another 2-3 years would just be a waste of money and effort. Far better to take their time and reboot the film franchise with a new cast they can lock down for 4 films, and with a dedicated producer willing to work with CBS to actually promote and build a franchise with a series of well-timed movies following the successful Marvel and Disney strategies. Paramount and BadRobot wasted a lot of potential over the last decade with Trek.
Since Paramount signed up both Pine and Quinto for a possible fourth reboot movie before the third one was even finished, it’s clear that lack of confidence in Pine isn’t what’s holding up the fourth reboot movie.
Re: Pine sol
As no one responsible for that contract with P/Q remains on the payroll at Paramount, Pine thus finds his Trek in limbo. And there it is likely to remain, until Gianopulos hires a production chairman, and that chairman hires a Kathleen Kennedy type to herd all their STAR TREK cats.
I think the smartest thing Paramount could do with Star Trek is acknowledge it will never be a Star Wars or Marvel level blockbuster. Trek was always at its best on the big screen when they weren’t trying to be the biggest movie of the year.
I do think there will be another Star Trek film, but I think it might be a little while until they can figure out the best way to do it and be successful.
Given the relative youth of the principal cast, though (Pine is still just 36, the same age Shatner was when he filmed season 2 of TOS), don’t count out them bringing back the same crew. The cast was never the problem with these movies.
Re: Smartest Move
I’ve absolutely no idea what’s the smartest move for Paramount in its current state, but I think what you suggest is most likely to be best for the type of Trek narratives that I fought for in seeking its ressurrection while everyone else declared it as dead back in the day as they now declare GENERATIONSed Prime Kirk.
But no major studio would ever have resurrected Trek (post Nemesis) as a smaller, more story-driven, less-FX feature. They’d been doing those for some 30 years to that point, and BO continued to decline (we can argue to what level the TNG fans were story driven and less FX, but regardless it’s clear they never endeavored to be the biggest movie of the year, and always had a fairly modest budget).
Of course, you and I realize the reason the last bunch of TOS/TNG movies didn’t perform is just simply the quality of the final product, but a bunch of executives who don’t know Star Trek just look at it and say, “well, we’ve tried this kind of film for the past 3 decades, maybe we could try something different.”
Don’t get me wrong, i’m all for different, and I enjoyed these three films for what they were, and overall I was happy to see them try something new… but I think we can all agree it’s time to make another change, and maybe go back to that smaller type of Trek story.
You could see they were sort of TRYING to on Beyond (which I think was probably Pegg’s doing), giving the characters a lot more to do than run, jump, and blow stuff up, but they clearly still had the studio mandate of “big bombastic action.”
Maybe this is when a passionate Trek fan who’s also an accomplished director swoops in and convinces the studio to give him 75M to let him make the Trek film HE wants to make.
At least, that’s my hope.
Now *that’s* a Star Trek!
Chris Pine’s impression of William Shatner’s Kirk was really actually great!
I was thinking the same thing!
It was certainly the best thing about that skit!
Loved Chris Pine on SNL. However, there was a clear violation of canon when Spocko was introduced as Spock’s half brother. In Star Trek V, Kirk was not aware that Spock had a brother Sybok. You would think he would have remembered Spocko, unless maybe Spock later erased Kirk’s memory like he did in “Requiem for Methuselah.” Oh, sorry, this wasn’t a real episode? I guess I’m so starved for actual new Star Trek that my nitpicking habits emerged instinctually. Ha, ha!
The show was cancelled before the episode aired, so Spocko is non-canon.
But now that it’s aired its non-non-canon — just like what happened with THE CAGE pilot.
Well, they didn’t air the whole episode, so it probably doesn’t count.
Re: they didn’t air the whole episode
I very interesting observation. But you do realize that since the CAGE was cut up for THE MENAGERIE, its undergone several restorations but it is still not EXACTLY 100% the original either. So THE CAGE, which is considered canon, has yet to air its entire episode, either.
Yeah, but a full version of the Cage did air. I think this would be more of the equivalent of deleted scenes. Actually, if this was real, fans would probably argue about whether or not it is canon all the time.
Bloody annoying, none of these links work in Canada. Can someone let me know if they find a link of Pine’s Star Trek sink skit that works outside the US. Thanks
You’re probably better off NOT seeing it, because it was really very bad. :-) Chris Pine did a pretty good Shatner impression, but the skit’s script was so unfunny that I have to wonder if it was deliberately bad for some reason.
People act as if SNL has been known for high quality comedy. More often than not it’s pretty terrible, with each episode having maybe one or two standouts that are what people remember.
Even the other Trek sketches are groan-worthy, but are worth watching for the one or two highlights (like Pine’s impression here).
All things considered, I actually think this is one of the better SNL Trek sketches.
Neil’s right. If Star Trek V had had Spocko instead of Sybok, it would have been much better.
Reading the comments has frequently become less and less enjoyable. It’s like now the place were Trek trolls come to crap on anything Kelvin-era, anything Discovery, anything CBS, anything that isn’t “safe.” Even people who are making sensible ‘not sure I’ll like this but I’ll wait and check it out’ comments get trolled by the trolls. How sad
If not for all the people around here who defend anything Kelvin-era, defend Discovery, and defend CBS, you’d have a point. You’re whining about something that just isn’t true.
I read the comments here sometimes too,and I can’t really agree that it just isn’t true. Still fun reading though,lol! I know what I like,and know that not everyone will like the same thing,but I’m not gonna defend this or that or say this is crap and this isn’t. Whining won’t really change anything,no matter how much anyone trolls or nitpicks.
PaulB you can check out just about any post here and see clearly what I’m talking about. It’s beyond annoying to see blatant trolling over and over again. It’s like yes we know, you don’t like Kelvin-era films or tech, or ships or hell anything Kelvin-era. Enough already. You want Trek to survive but instead of even waiting to see a true trailer for Discovery to see what the acting is like, or what the characters look like, or what the writing/dialogue is like you get all “Discovery is dead.” “Why are they still trying to make Discovery happen?” “Ugh, Discovery is just for TOS fanboys.” How about you wait until you actually see something that you can pick apart. I hate to see a portion of fans -the most vocal ones- practically wishing new Trek projects to fail. That’s the point I’m making here.
Haven’t watched SNL in years; now I remember why. Pine’s a good actor and he can definitely do comedy but even he can’t overcome such godawful writing. I compare this to Belushi’s classic sendup from the 70’s or even Shatner’s hilarious turn in ’86 and it’s sad to see how far this show has fallen and how badly the standards of good television have eroded.
Both of those old sketches are pretty bad.
I have to concur with my esteemed colleagues here.
This episode seems to have been running low on dilithium crystals.
Chris Pine is not a good enough singer to be featuring his singing. Nobody clapped when he said that he was in “Star Trek”. And his opening skit is a pale imitation of the much funnier SNL skit from 2012, “Dylan McDermott or Dermot Mulroney?”
For my money, the funniest thing in the whole episode is the expression on Kate McKinnon’s face as the not-sought-after Kellyanne Conway.
I thought it was a good-natured skit which finally let Pine go full-Shatner. Good times. There are so many angry people posting here these days. Are you really all that unhappy? Never mind. Please don’t respond.
One doesn’t have to be angry or unhappy to label this SNL episode as the idiotic crapfest that it was. Stop mistaking legitimate complaints for anger and unhappiness. Just accept that some people don’t like this crap even if you do.
I mean, you must be so angry to post about what other people are saying. Are you unhappy? Or just expressing an opinion, maybe?
Not to get too meta (too late?) but I think we can all agree that criticism is good, *if* it’s constructive. Most of the comments lately do not fall into that category, but rather into “only *my* taste is valid” subjectivity.
Nobody is going to be convinced by that form of argumentation, and it’s kind of useless to chime in with “well, *I* hated it!” just for the sake of feeling heard. It’s not like Chris Pine or the Powers That Be are going to take writing and acting notes from a bunch of internet commenters, are they?
I personally thought Chris Pine was a blast to watch. He committed to every scene, no matter how ridiculous, brought a lot of energy to everything. He put the audience and his fellow cast members at ease. Not every host can do that. I know it’s not to everyone’s taste but when you see other actors fail at this week after week, you realize what a tremendous achievement that is.
It’s important to remember that, scripted film clips and Weekend Update aside, most SNL sketches are re-written with notes by Lorne Michaels almost right up until the minute they start the scene. They throw out TONS of cue cards. The actors have barely any chance to learn their lines, and it’s also why the sightlines and staging seem very stilted – partly for camera angles, but also so they can read their cue cards.
I’m not sure how common cue card usage was back in the classic Season One era, but it certainly seemed like they trusted the writers and performers more; plus, most of the performers were very tight from having performed together for years before SNL (Second City, National Lampoon Radio Hour). It’s kind of unfair to compare the ‘legendary’ S1 SNL to today’s show because they’re really different beasts.
Some things I did note as interesting: Many sketches were shorter – in fact they were just long enough not to be tiresome. The ‘Carmen Sandiego’ parody was spot-on, and also remarkable that they invested so much in sets, costumes, and a splendid Lynne Thigpen impression for a sketch that lasted under two minutes.
Yeah, some sketches fell flat. (Shrug emoji.) That’s SNL! It is kind of disappointing that the Star Trek sketch didn’t aim for accuracy in order to deliver a better satirical punch. The idea of a 3rd season episode of a show failing in the ratings going for a gimmicky pop culture cameo isn’t too far from reality, like its campy contemporaries Batman (1966) or The Man From UNCLE, but as written it didn’t really leave any room for the actors to set up the “normal” before introducing the comedic twist, and it’s now entering the territory of being a bit of an esoteric pop culture reference for younger audiences unfamiliar with the history/context of 60s television. A parody of the KT Star Trek might have been a bit brighter and fresher. A for effort, C for execution.
Re: It’s not like Chris Pine or the Powers That Be are going to take writing and acting notes from a bunch of internet commenters, are they?
I don’t see why not? Shatner’s last sitcom, $#*! MY DAD SAYS, took writing and acting notes from a bunch of tweets in a twitter feed — not to imply that it was any good, but it serves as an example that such a thing is not entirely out of the question.
True, but the nature of SNL (competition by writers to get sketches into a show, different host every week, few consistent characters, last-minute rewrites, cue cards etc) doesn’t really allow for iterative improvement. A comedy series, sure. You want to listen to fans who care when you’re getting something new off the ground. An established show with the same showrunner for 40-odd years? Unlikely.
I thought it was a good-natured skit which finally let Pine go full-Shatner.
I don’t think anyone’s saying that it wasn’t good-natured.
There just wasn’t much to the skit, and Pine’s “full-Shatner” fell very short.
Bobby Moynihan’s “Now that’s a Star Trek!” and the initial “Pizza Beach” reveal were kind of funny, but they weren’t quite enough to carry the skit. And they literally could have done this skit with pretty much anyone in the place of Chris Pine—-he brought nothing to it.
Yoshimura also cameoed as Sulu on Patrick Stewart’s guest hosting SNL skit “Love Boat – The Next Generation” as well.
Yep, was just going to post that. That is some hard-core Trek knowledge!
I think people here are missing the most important thing about this skit. It’s about pizza!
I will say this… Pine’s Shatner was really dead solid. Too bad the sketch was awful.
Pine was fine. The rest of it was total bollocks.
That was horrible, stupid, and exactly what you can expect from the current SNL. Star Trek V was actually way better that that tripe. Pine should be embarrassed.
More affirmation why I haven’t tuned into this steaming pile of bear dung since about 1995. It makes me want to pour bleach into my ear and shake my skull vigorously to get the taste of infantile stupidity out of my synapses. (Lavoris for the intellect, if you will.)
Boy, you guys have no sense of humor. Some of you and your affinity for TNG is starting to make sense! lol
To quote Big-Toe Hulka, ‘…Lighten up Frances.”
I think people here DO have a sense of humor. It just wasn’t funny. Paint drying is funnier than that.
…my point exactly..
Funny as bone cancer.
Wow. We have come a long way down from Dana Carvey as Khan. I don’t watch SNL much these days, but isn’t it supposed to be a comedy?
That was awful.