Will Heath/NBC

Don't Worry, 'SNL' Will Return Soon

Every year around holiday time, networks suddenly yank their shows off the air for a few brief weeks, to return in the January. This tradition holds true for sitcoms, dramas, as well as our favorite Saturday night sketch comedy. So when does SNL return from hiatus? Don't worry, it won't be gone for long. You'll be able to enjoy your Saturday night belly laughs again very soon. In the meantime, fill your Saturdays with eggnog and family bonding instead.

Update: After this article was published, NBC announced that SNL will return on Saturday, January 13, 2018 with host Sam Rockwell and musical guest Halsey.

Earlier: On Dec. 16, Saturday Night Live will air its last episode before Season 43's midseason break. The show will be hosted by Kevin Hart, who's starring in the new comedy Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. Having gotten his start as a stand-up comedian before transitioning into acting, I have a feeling Hart is going to kill it this week. Luckily for anyone who has to follow him in the hosting gig, no one will have the honor for at least a few more weeks until the show returns from its brief winter break. As of right now, the next host of the show has not been announced, so we'll likely have to wait until just before the show comes back to know for sure, unless NBC makes the announcement at some point Saturday evening, which is always possible.

I haven't been able to find an official announcement for when Saturday Night Live will be back after the winter hiatus, so I'm required to do a little sleuthing and deductive reasoning instead. For the past few years, SNL has briefly gone off the air starting the second week in December as it is this year. The break lasts through Christmas and New Year's, returning about midway through January. Season 42, for example, took a break on Dec. 17 and came back on Jan. 14, 2017, having been away for three weeks. By this logic, it's a pretty easy guess that the show will come back Jan. 13, 2018 — the second Saturday in the New Year. It seems like a long time, but I promise you, folks. It is not.

This season of Saturday Night Live has been consistently strong, with only one or two disappointing episodes. It has also consistently kept up a steady stream of Donald Trump jokes, even a year after he was elected President of the United States. Jokes about the president usually die off after the election, unless he happens to do something particularly joke-worthy. Unfortunately, Trump seems to be the exception to that rule. It's no wonder SNL hasn't been able to stop parodying him. That said, I get so much of Trump in my daily life, I hope the skits slow down in the second half of the season.

Some of the hosts in the early half of this season of SNL included James Franco, Tiffany Haddish, Kumail Nanjiani, Ryan Gosling, and my personal favorite, Chance the Rapper, who introduced the world to a new Thanksgiving song during his opening monologue, and was one part of the Boys II Men-inspired ballad, "Come Back, Barack." The boy band ballad was a highlight of Season 43, as well as Saoirse Ronan's part in the girl group parody song, "Welcome to Hell," which was the anthem about sexual harassment we all needed.

Now that SNL is gone for the next few weeks, I'll have to find new ways to fill my Saturday nights. I've heard that people sometimes go out with their friends on these days? Maybe I'll give that a shot.

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