When it was announced that Russell Crowe would host the April 9 episode of Saturday Night Live, I admit I was afraid. He just didn't seem like he had much of a sense of humor. I know he's in the upcoming dark comedy The Nice Guys, but he seems like more of the straight man in that movie. The rest of his work just doesn't scream comedy, you know? But, it turns out, Russell Crowe's SNL appearance shows he can be just downright goofy.
I know I'm not the only one who had the fears I did. Crowe's SNL monologue addressed my concerns, making jokes about what it would be like if Crowes movies, like Gladiator and A Beautiful Mind, were seen as comedies. Those movies are ultra serious, but the rest of Crowe's SNL performances were really silly. He dressed up as a hologram of Henry VIII and asked all of the female cast members to bear him a son. (I'd like to say it makes more sense in the context of the sketch, but it doesn't.) He put on a fake accent to be a Freud-like character hitting on ladies on a fake dating show (with some pretty explicit pick-up lines).
But, in his funniest sketch, Crowe really went all out to go against type. The sketch took place on location during a fictional, Survivor-like reality show called 100 Days in the Jungle. Each of the contestants gets a visit from a beloved family member: a wife, a mother, and, for Pete Davidson's character...a friend of his uncle? Crowe plays the off-putting friend — someone who once lived in a tent in the uncle's backyard — and he commits to it 100 percent. And, when it comes time for the episode's "challenge," where the family members have to eat something gross, well, Crowe really nails it.
I never really thought of Crowe as a funny guy, but he made me laugh in all of these sketches, especially that last one. If these dramas don't work out for him, there could be a career for him on a sketch show.
Watch the full monologue below:
Image: Dana Edelson/NBC