Kenan Thompson Didn’t Write an SNL Sketch Until His Fifth Season

-Let me just say, you look
like a million bucks. -What?
-You look fit and you look trim.
-Thank you. -And a lot of people —
-Spanx is working. -The Spanx are working.
[ Laughter ] ‘Cause you have two
little girls. And I feel like with dads,
it could go either way. Like, you have kids and you
just give up. -I have small children,
and they keep you on your toes. -They keep you on your toes.
-I’ve thought about giving up. -Yeah.
-I don’t know. I haven’t slept. I don’t where I am right now. -I guess you’re running
around a lot. -Right now.
-Beautiful girls. -But, yeah, they’re sweeties.
-Look at those two. [ Cheers and applause ]
-The sweetest. -That right there — that is a Kenan Thompson face
if I’ve ever seen one. -Come on. She is a ham.
That’s Georgia. And that’s Gianna,
the little one. -Georgia and Gianna. -Little one’s about
to start walking. It’s the best.
-There you go. They’re off — and off they go.
-Yeah. -You were having this — you have, obviously,
a beautiful wife. You have two kids.
And you are in your 17th season at “Saturday Night Live.”
-Oh, my gosh, it’s a blessing. [ Cheers and applause ]
Thank you. It’s a blessing, man.
I mean, I would say they same. We’re two very, very
blessed gentlemen. -Yes, we are.
-Especially the fact that you get to, like, stay so close.
-Yeah. -We get to work, and we have
a wife and two kids. And it’s, you know, we have
great job here in 30 Rock. But the fact that you’ve
graduated and you still can stay around,
like, it’s really — -It’s not bad. The other
crazy thing is, of course, I remember — I think you
came in my third year, I think, was your first year.
-Mm-hmm. -But you had already done
more sketches than almost anyone on Earth. -Well, that’s thanks to
Nickelodeon. -Yeah.
-Yeah. [ Cheers and applause ]
-So… -Yeah. -You were on “All That.” -Yes, I was.
[ Cheers and applause ] -And —
-I sure was. -Here we are there.
That’s a popular character. -Yeah, Pierre Escargot.
[ Cheers and applause ] -Did you — did you feel —
when you came in to “SNL” — and, obviously, it’s as intense
and stressful as everybody says —
did that help? Did you think,
“Oh, I’ve done sketches before”? Or were you as terrified
as everyone else? -It only helped on Saturday.
-Yeah. -Because I was ready for this
kind of thing. Like, the cameras are here, and I knew who to play to
at home. [ Light laughter ] But the writing part of it,
I found that really difficult, ’cause I didn’t have
to write at Nickelodeon. -Yeah.
-We would just ad lib and then they would throw stuff
in the script. But I really wished, like, I
had, you know, finished college and, you know, like,
learned how to write. ‘Cause it took me a while.
Like, the first sketch I wrote was, like, in my fifth season
or something. -Really? I didn’t realize
it was that long. I mean, you did go to comedy
college, it should be noted. -Yes.
-And now you’re giving that gift to a whole new cast. -And now the babies are
bringing the show back. -A new generation of “All That.”
-Look at that. There’s a whole new cast.
It’s so awesome. [ Applause ]
-So — Look at — look at — look at their faces! -Do they —
-The sweetest. -I mean, obviously, based on
their age, did they have any sense of what
“All That” was? Is that a show that’s still on
to a place where they could — -Nickelodeon’s done really
well with keeping it around. -Uh-huh.
-Keeping it in, like, you know,
younger kids’ minds. And, like, they’re always
reintroducing it. Like, ’90s nostalgia
and stuff like that. So, yeah, they’re hyper-aware.
But they’re also super professional
and super sweet. And they support each other
in the greatest way. So if you got Instagram,
go follow them all because it will brighten up
your day. They are the sweetest
little kids. And they’re so on their thing. They’re way more professional
than I was at that age. [ Light laughter ]
It’s unbelievable. -I want to talk about your
professionalism really quick. And I’m glad you brought it up.
-Interesting. [ Laughter ]
Sure. -‘Cause I have to take
issue with something you did. -Is that right?
-Yeah. -Mm.
-You played a character this week
called Thunderstick. -Oh, yes, yes.
-On the show. -Part of the first mixed race
royal couple. -Yeah.
-Yeah, that’s right. -Phoebe Waller-Bridge was
a royal, and you were… -She was great. -…her new husband,
Thunderstick. -That’s right.
-And people might not know this. But this studio is obviously
empty on the weekends. -Yeah, because you work Monday
through — -Thursday.
-Should we tell people that? -Yeah, go for it. And so you work right
down them hall — -So you give us the gracious —
out of your heart to let us shoot in your studio.
-Nobody ever asks. You just come here on — yeah.
-Yeah. -Uninvited, people come.
-You’re very kind. -And, you know, and the only
thing I ask is, like, respect the desk.
You know what I mean? -I feel you. The desk —
-You get that. -Yeah.
-This is my home. -For sure.
-Without the desk I’m nothing. -You have fought
to establish this. -Yes.
-Yes. -And you were filming
in this studio. -I was.
-And you sent me a photo. -Well, I wanted you to know
that we were here. -Yeah. And you tell me if you think
this is professional. [ Light laughter ]
-Sure. Let’s see. [ Laughter ] [ Cheers and applause ]
-What — No, no, no. [ Applause continues ] I just wanted to leave you
a little gift. -Is that what you want these
children — [ Laughter ]
-I would love for them to have that kind of
relationship with their co-workers, yes.

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