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Top 10 SNL Game Shows

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Written by Trevor Fonvergne It’s time to play. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 SNL Game Show Parodies. For this list, we’re looking at the funniest sketches from “Saturday Night Live” that utilize a game show format. Have an idea you want to see made into a WatchMojo video? Check out our suggest page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest and submit your idea.
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It’s time to play. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 SNL Game Show Parodies.

For this list, we’re looking at the funniest sketches from “Saturday Night Live” that utilize a game show format.


#10: “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? With Steve Harvey”


Kenan Thompson is an “SNL” game show MVP, and his Steve Harvey impression is among his best. Imagining him as a bumbling oaf, he mispronounces and misunderstands every question he reads to various confused contestants. The earnestness with which he progresses through the questions despite the clearly unfair misreading is absolutely ludicrous, and things appear to boil over when host Gabourey Sidibe decides to take matters into her own hands... literally. The best part about the sketch is that it was inspired by Harvey’s almost equally ridiculous real-life run as a host, which is also worth having a laugh at.

#9: “Reel Quotes”


In this fictitious game show, players must finish famous movie quotes. Unfortunately, Charles Barkley’s Blockbuster manager and Kristen Wiig’s strange Rebecca are absolutely clueless. Barkley has little understanding of how the game is played, while Wiig goes off on long and random tangents. Bill Hader, to no one’s surprise, hosts the show as the straight man to their bizarrely inept participants. The questions are essentially akin to playing a game of Scene It, but much easier. Since these quotes are probably common knowledge to even the most casual moviegoer, the brainlessness of the characters is amped up to the max, to wonderful effect.


#8: “Dylan McDermott or Dermot Mulroney?”


We all have a handful of celebrities that we mix up with others, but what if you were challenged to differentiate them? Dylan McDermott of “American Horror Story” and Dermot Mulroney of “My Best Friend’s Wedding” are two similar-looking and similar-named actors, and the contestants are baffled trying to discern which is which. The host, who possesses Bill Hader’s impeccable comic timing, is confused by the nonsensical premise, further complicating things by confusing other films. The show gets really crazy when Dermot Mulroney himself makes a cameo, and even he is unsure of which person he is.


#7: “What’s Wrong with Tanya?!”


Anyone who’s ever caught a glimpse of a Lifetime Original Movie can understand exactly how melodramatic and ridiculous they can be. The funny ladies take center stage in this game show, in which three mothers have to figure out what’s wrong with daughter Tanya. There’s a joke packed into just about every moment, all of which poke fun at Lifetime. It’s a perfect sketch for host Anna Faris, who made a name for herself with her dramatic hilarity in the “Scary Movie” series, a talent she falls back on here. The sketch feels meticulously researched, and it’s even more rewarding to find out that Kristen Wiig later made a Lifetime movie herself with Will Ferrell.


#6: “Game of Game of Thrones”


Zach Galifianakis brings his trademark kookiness as a “Game of Thrones” super-fan competing in a quiz show about the hit show. Well, mostly about the hit show. Host O.J. Sampson gives the poor dragon-clad dude questions that aren’t even related to Westeros. The finale is a torture so cruel that only Cersei could have thought it up, as Nikolaj Coster-Waldau makes a cameo only to embarrass the contestant. It’s a fun watch whether you can relate to the “Game of Thrones” fanatics, or Bill Hader’s clearly annoyed host. After all, when you play the game of “Game of Thrones,” you win or get horribly humiliated.


#5: “Meet Your Second Wife”


When Tina Fey and Amy Poehler combine forces, the laughs could almost bring Studio 8H crumbling down. The duo returned to SNL and premiered this gem of a sketch, wherein they hosted a show that introduces married men to their future spouses. It’s obviously an awkward subject what with the current wives in the audience, made even more uncomfortable by the fact that all of the future wives are very young. Fey and Poehler’s glee at the contestants’ obvious discomfort raises the comedy, as does the surreal nature of the show itself. The cherry on top is the final gag that the show itself will be responsible for the death of one current wife.


#4: “Secret Word”


If you can’t tell by now, Kristen Wiig is one of “SNL”’s all-time greats. Mindy Grayson continually participates on “Secret Word,” despite clearly having a poor grasp of the rules. Her flamboyant theatre actress ranks among Wiig’s best characters, always breaking the cardinal rule of the game by outright stating the secret word. The sketch rises above its seemingly single-joke premise with Wiig’s consistently dynamic performance, as well as a slew of peculiar one-off characters that compete against Mindy. It’s sketches like these that exemplify why Wiig and Bill Hader received Emmy nominations for their time on the show, while also providing showcases for various hosts.

#3: “Celebrity Family Feud”


Kenan Thompson’s Steve Harvey returns as host in this parody of the real-life “Celebrity Family Feud.” Allowing the cast to pick-and-choose their best impressions gives all the cast members time to shine, with Jay Pharoah and Kate McKinnon always being particularly memorable. The political edition of the sketch stands out as having some of the best impersonations, including guests Darrell Hammond as Bill Clinton and Larry David as Bernie Sanders. It’s one of the best sources of celebrity imitations on the series, allowing for some of the most absurdly comical moments of recent seasons.

#2: “Japanese Game Show”


A sketch like this, with white actors playing Japanese characters, would likely not air on “SNL” today. However, the legendary Chris Farley shines as a very confused American contestant on a baffling Japanese game show. As the show progresses, it becomes clear that the stakes are uproariously higher than the American had anticipated. Playing against expectations, Farley manages to beat out the Japanese players... although the result is not exactly what he would have hoped for. It’s one of the oldest sketches to appear on this list, but that’s to its credit, since it’s managed to endure since the mid-90s.

Before we reveal our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.


“New Cast Member or Arcade Fire?”


“What Is Burn Notice?”



“Beat the Bookworm”



#1: “Celebrity Jeopardy!”


“Celebrity Jeopardy” is not only “SNL”’s best game show parody, it’s one of the series’ most famous recurring sketches, and rightly so. Like “Celebrity Family Feud,” it brought about some of the show’s best celebrity impersonations, none better than Darrell Hammond’s renowned and antagonizing Sean Connery and Will Ferrell’s exasperated Alex Trebek. The unbelievable idiocy of the celebrities always manages to surprise with each iteration, never failing to please the audience. This sketch was followed by a spiritual successor, “Black Jeopardy,” which is an excellent staple of the more recent seasons. But after all this time, one question is still unanswered: what exactly are potent potables?
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