As Saturday Night Live approaches 50, it’s only natural that the once-exclusive Five-Timers Club -- celebs who have hosted the show at least 5 times -- continues to grow.  By our count, the club now has twenty-two members, including last season’s newcomers Paul Rudd and John Mulaney, as well as we-wouldn’t-have-guessed names like Ben Affleck, Danny DeVito, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.  

Twenty-two is a lot, but we look at the Five-Timers Club like various sports’ Halls of Fame -- the more members, the merrier.  Here are 7 prime candidates that we believe belong in the clubhouse of all-time killer hosts.

(For the purposes of this exercise, we’ll exclude former cast members -- “hosting” seems like cheating since it’s more like welcoming a vacationing castmate back to perform greatest hits. That means apologies to Kristen Wiig and Dana Carvey (4 timers), Amy Poehler and Maya Rudolph (double-dippers), and a host of other SNL vets who destroyed it on return appearances.)

John C. Reilly

How in the heck has John C. Frickin’ Reilly only hosted one time? Not only is the guy a comedy giant (Step Brothers, Walk Hard, Dr. Steve Brule), but he absolutely ruled on his hosting appearance back in 2006.  Check out his absurdly muscled swimming instructor who promises to turn Will Forte’s Olympic dreams into smokable reality dust. (Based on this sketch, we think Reilly and Forte should do a movie together.) 

Ariana Grande

Grande has made multiple appearances on SNL, including several shots as the musical guest but only once as a host. What the heck? Her considerable abilities as a musical mimic make her a slam-dunk sketch participant. 

But she’s surprisingly strong in non-musical bits as well. Her Jennifer Lawrence imitation is devastating; her comic timing impeccable.  Guess she learned a thing or two when she was growing up before our eyes on Victorious and Sam and Cat

How about more host/musical guest double-duty the next time Ariana drops a new album? Now that ex-fiancee Pete Davidson’s gone, it’s not like it would be awkward or anything. 

Donald Glover

Yet another inexplicable one-timer, Glover hosted back in 2018, serving as his own musical guest in his Childish Gambino persona. The Community and Atlanta star actually auditioned for SNL twice back in the day; after hosting, Indiewire argued that he should be cast immediately. You can see why with sketches like this one about a group of interns vying to write social media captions for Barbie. 

It’s easy to forget that Glover got his start in sketch comedy.  Back in his NYU days, he started an online sketch group called Derrick Comedy, one of the first YouTube channels to deliver a string of viral hits.  Combine that background with Glover’s contributions to some of our favorite comedies of the past decade and Lorne would be silly not to invite the dude back for more. 

Emma Stone

 

Here’s an easy one -- Stone is already a four-time host, making her just one shy of being fitted for a Five-Timers Club sashed robe. (Just a suggestion, Lorne -- try selling those velour beauties in the SNL shop alongside the Stefon coffee mugs and Mango phone cases.  You’ll probably make a bundle.)

Jon Hamm

 

Based on his numerous appearances on the Comedy Bang-Bang podcast and multiple SNL cameos (is this guy just hanging around in the alley behind 30 Rock?), there’s no bigger closet comedian than Mad Men’s Jon Hamm. He’s a three-time host and chomping at the bit for more--the guy just loves getting the laughs.  He’s game for anything, from playing his most famous role …

… to getting sweaty, shirtless, and saxy as Sergio. 

Hamm was one of those kids who begged to stay up late to watch the show. He calls his first time hosting “an out-of-body experience wandering around Studio 8H.” No one loves the gig more than Jon -- let’s get him a robe already. 

Miley Cyrus

 

We’re probably wrong, but we think Lorne has a bit of a crush on Miley.  She’s got three hosting gigs and six musical guest turns under her belt -- he clearly enjoys having her around. In fact, it seems downright weird that Miley isn’t already a Five Timer -- all those appearances make her feel like a virtual cast member.

Steve Carell

 

Carell is another three-timer who feels like he should have been a cast member. (Did he ever audition? Lorne Michaels says yes, Carell says it didn’t happen although his wife Nancy Walls was a cast member in season 21.)  Given his Second City background in improv and sketch, Carell would have been a natural for the show. 

While Steve is two appearances shy of Five-Timer immortality, he has secretly shown up several times on SNL as the voice of Gary, one half of the Ambiguously Gay Duo.  Stephen Colbert provided the pipes for Gary’s super-partner Ace.

While it feels like all that voicework should get Carell honorary all-time status, let’s get him a couple more hosting spots and make it official. 

For more ComedyNerd, be sure to check out:

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