‘SNL’ Recap: Matt Damon Pays Tribute to His Late Father

Matt Damon took a moment to honor his late father a year after his death while hosting the Saturday, December 15, episode of Saturday Night Live.

A Sentimental Touch

Damon joked about how far he’s come since last hosting SNL 16 years ago, including marrying his wife, Luciana, and having four kids. “If you told me that Ben Affleck and I would be washing cars in Summerville, Massachusetts, well, I would’ve believed that too,” he quipped. He then made a heartfelt connection to his love for the sketch series, noting how his father, who passed away one year ago, let him stay up late and watch as an 8-year-old kid. He then brought it to the present by mentioning that his family were watching, including his youngest daughter, who is 8.

Dynamic Duo

Miley Cyrus, showing off some major skin, and Mark Ronson first performed their single “Nothing Breaks Like a Heart.” Pete Davidson, in his only live appearance of the episode, later introduced the duo when they sang “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” with John Lennon’s son Sean Ono Lennon.

Best Christmas Ever

Damon and Cecily Strong led this pre-taped bit about parents reflecting on their perfect Christmas … except it wasn’t as great as they remembered. From being woken up at 5 a.m. by screaming children to dealing with grumpy in-laws to cursing at toys as they tried to assemble them, the holiday was kind of a disaster but still “the best.”


Strong and Damon teamed up again as a musical duo performing Christmas songs. The comedian delivered the lyrics in a very fast and frantic manner as she went along, making for a version of “Jingle Bells” like no one has ever heard before.

Oscars Host

This compilation of impressions gave Damon several stand-out moments. His Matthew McConaughey and Chris Hemsworth — a close friend of his — imitations were spot-on while celebrities auditioned to replace Kevin Hart as the Oscars host. Strong shined as The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’s Rachel Brosnahan too. Davidson also briefly appeared in the prerecorded bit as Rami Malek.

Old Folks

Beck Bennett’s drunk Santa ornament commiserated with the scourge left to hang on the back of the Christmas tree. The highlight of this sketch was when Damon announced he was a “for your consideration promotional Good Will Hunting ornament.”

Ad Lib

“Weekend Update” viewers got to see a more relaxed, improv-ish side of Michael Che and Colin Jost when the cohosts read jokes live that they had written for each other but never seen before. The pair couldn’t contain their laughter as they realized what they were saying.

Saturday Night Live will return to NBC in January 2019.

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