Melissa McCarthy fans will argue that her current “Saturday Night Live” gig as White House press secretary Sean Spicer is her best moment on the show, but I disagree. You actually have to go all the way back to her first appearance as host on October 1, 2011 to find McCarthy’s all-time greatest “SNL” sketch, titled “Taste Test.” That’s the one where McCarthy plays an enthusiastic character named Linda who has a special affinity for Hidden Valley Ranch dressing. Watch the viral sketch above.
In the six-minute scene from Season 37, Linda’s competitive nature forces her to try to outdo two fellow taste testers (played by departing cast members Taran Killam and Abby Elliott) when focus group leader Roger (Bobby Moynihan) offers $50 for the best Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing slogan.
The sketch ends with McCarthy completely drenching herself in ranch dressing, then spooning it off her chest and into her mouth. “That’s good to the last drop!” she remarks in deadpan fashion as the “Saturday Night Live” audience is heard rolling in the aisles.
What makes the moment rise to the top for me amongst her four hosting gigs (she’ll join the Five-Timers Club on Saturday) is that there’s no political angle and no controversy, just simply McCarthy doing what she does best — physical comedy. She fully commits to the craziness of the situation, never breaking character for even a second.
McCarthy earned an Emmy nomination for each of her first four times hosting “Saturday Night Live” (2012, 2013, 2014, 2016). And she could well return to the race this year for her May 13 stint, especially given the nationwide media attention she’s earned for playing Spicer over the past few months.
This week’s “SNL” episode will once again air coast-to-coast, meaning fans on the west coast get to watch it at 8:30 p.m. while east-coast viewers are seeing it in its normal 11:30 p.m. time slot. This change has resulted in a huge ratings surge for NBC’s 42-year-old sketch comedy series.
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