The Definitive Ranking Of SNL’s Weekend Update Anchors

Just in time for Colin Jost to replace Seth Meyers as anchor on March 1, 2014. posted on

This list does not include anchors of spin-off segments, SNL Newsbreak (1981 -1982), or Saturday Night News (1982 - 1985).


Sorry, Mr. Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

14. Charles Rocket (1980-1981)

Via NBC

Why: Rocket’s handsome, too-cool for school charm proved to be his downfall; while Rocket definitely looked the part of an actual news anchor, he missed the funny parody news aspect entirely.

Best joke: Him as Weekend Update anchor.

13. Kevin Nealon (1991-1994)

NBC / Via blogger.com

Why: The above picture embodies my exact reaction to Kevin Nealon as a Weekend Update anchor: confusion. Dry-humor is a test of wit, but Nealon’s humor was neither dry nor witty; it was just uncomfortable and awkward to watch.

Best Joke: Nealon thinking he was funny.

How long will it take you to cringe? Watch this segment to find out

12. Colin Quinn (1998-2000)

NBC / Via i1.ytimg.com

Why: Colin Quinn’s wanna-be dreams of being a late-night anchor quickly got old and sad to watch. More annoyingly was the blatant obviousness of him reading jokes from the teleprompter.

Best joke: The stand-up routine he did before sitting down.

Click here to watch one of Colin Quinn’s better episodes

11. Seth Meyers and Cecily Strong (2013-2014)

Via NBC

Why: They were OK, but that’s about it. Here’s hoping that Strong will take advantage of her second chance with new co-anchor Colin Jost, to make a more lasting impression behind the desk.

Best joke: “The government shuts down every time Aresino [Hall] gets a TV show” - Seth Meyers

Catch Seth and Cecily

10. Chevy Chase (1975-1976)

Why: The original Weekend Update anchor, Chevy Chase helped create what would be SNL’s longest running skit. Chase was funny, but unfortunately just because you did it first doesn’t mean you did it best.

Best joke: I’m Chevy Chase … and you’re not.

Click here to watch Chevy

9. Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey (2000-2004)

Why: The best thing that Jimmy Fallon and Tina Fey had was chemistry. The second best thing was Tina Fey.

Best joke: “Kelli Carpenter, Rosie O’Donnell’s life partner, has legally changed her name to O’Donnell. The two celebrated by eating out.” - Tina Fey

Watch Jimmy and Tina

8. Bill Murray and Jane Curtin (1978-1980)

Via NBC

Why: Curtin and Murray perfected the roles of being “serious news anchors” without compromise to comedy. Both stand-alone acts, them working together was a gift to all audiences.

Best joke: The outfits Bill choose to wear.

Watch Jane and Bill be perfect

7. Seth Meyers (2008-2014)

Why: Seth Meyers is Weekend Update’s longest running host, with over 8 seasons and 154 episodes under his belt. Using his charm to his advantage, Meyers perfected the skill of sarcastic humor and joke delivery, truly never letting a joke fall flat without a decent recovery right after.

Best joke: I saw a cockroach in my bathroom, and now I shower at the gym.

Catch Seth at WU before he moves to Late Night

6. Jane Curtin (1976-1977)

NBC / Via wordpress.com

Why: Without Jane Curtin, Aykroyd and Murray wouldn’t have been half as good. She gave Weekend Update the honor of being its first women anchor, and for that we’ll always thank her. You go, Jane — take that, Connie Chung.

Best joke: “There’s an old saying, behind every successful man, there’s a woman — a loving, giving, caring woman. But, you wouldn’t know about that Dan, because there’s no old saying about what’s behind a miserable failure.”

Catch Jane respond to her haters in this famous WU monologue

5. Seth Meyers and Amy Poehler (2006-2008)

NBC / Via tumblr.com

Why: Amy Poehler and Seth Meyers were a great team; with their sarcastic humor and big grins, Poehler and Meyers have definitely left their mark on Weekend Update. Even when a joke fell flat, they could still get a little smile from you.

Best joke: Really?!

REALLY?! Catch Seth and Amy’s classic segment

4. Dan Aykroyd and Jane Curtin (1977-1978)

Via NBC

Why: Jane Curtin and Dan Aykroyd set the precedent as co-anchors. Their Point/Counterpoint segments clearly showcased how well these two worked together, as they were constantly able to take comedic cues. Always able to act profession but still funny, Curtin and Aykroyd were a classic team.

Best joke: “Jane, you ignorant slut.” -Aykroyd

Don’t be ignorant, watch their best Point-Counterpoint segment

3. Dennis Miller (1985-1991)

Via NBC

Why: Faced with the task of ’80s news, none would have done it better than Dennis Miller. Yes, he was sort of an asshole, but that’s what made him perfect for the job. His sarcastic wit never failed to produce quick laughs, and when that failed, his smart-ass persona was a good alternative. He was an overall great anchorperson and with that I am outta here.

Best joke: That hair.

Watch Dana Carvey impersonate Dennis Miller on WU

2. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler (2004-2006)

NBC / Via glamour.com

Why: THE DYNAMIC DUO, THE COMEDY-WOMEN HEROINES: TINA FEY AND AMY POEHLER WERE EVERYTHING. Together, Fey and Poehler were the two best co-anchors Weekend Update had ever had. They were comedic gems, and their chemistry was flawless.

Best joke: “Bitches get stuff done.”

Watch this to see why Tina and Amy were awesome

1. Norm MacDonald (1994-1997)

NBC / Via NBC

Why: Weekend Update was made for Norm MacDonald. His dry sense of humor, cynicism, and delivery are what made him perfect for the job. He wasn’t afraid of hurting someone’s feelings, and he didn’t care if you laughed at his joke or not, because that was your own problem, not his.

Best joke: O.J. Simpson reportedly has a videotape that he says proves who actually murdered Nicole. He said he intends to use this tape as evidence in his upcoming civil trial. What’s on the tape? The first Simpson trial.

Click here to watch Norm be Norm

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