In a strong episode hosted by comedian Louis C.K., “SNL” helped lighten the post-Sandy mood but without being too heavy-handed or comparing the storm to Sept. 11 (as Mayor Michael Bloomberg did, to some criticism, when attempting to keep the New York City marathon from being canceled). C.K. did address the seriousness of the storm damage, however, in a separate letter to his fans sent prior to the show.
The cold open gently teased the mayor, played by Fred Armisen, as he addressed the city and pointed out that his ban on giant sugary sodas probably prevented the deaths of many obese New Yorkers who would have otherwise floated down the Hudson River. The main thrust of the sketch, however, was Bloomberg’s sign language interpreter, riffing off the popular expressive signing of Lydia Callis. Cecily Strong enjoyed a standout moment as the interpreter, pushing out her ears to indicate Barack Obama. Then, Bobby Moynihan stepped in to play New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (with all his conflicting feelings of bipartisanship) along with his own distinctively big-haired, gum-chewing Jersey interpreter. “Sleep with one eye open, Sandy!” Moynihan threatened. It was a silly, lighthearted way to acknowledge the impact of the storm as well as the spirit of those impacted.