Kate McKinnon bid an emotional goodbye in Saturday’s season finale of “Saturday Night Live.”
In a cold opening skit, McKinnon reprised her role in the recurring “Close Encounters” series as Colleen Rafferty, a frequent abductee whose encounters are never quite as serene as those of her fellow abductees.
The skit begins with McKinnon as Rafferty, along with the other abductees (played by Cecily Strong and host Natasha Lyonne) are debriefed by National Security Agents (Aidy Bryant and Mikey Day). During the debriefing, McKinnon’s Rafferty shares the details of her encounter, which involve her being “yanked skyward by some sort of claw machine device” as she was “popping a squat on the median” at the side of the road.
She then found herself “dumped on board the bottom of the ship,” clad only in shirt and underwear, where she sees her “old pals, the little gray aliens with the big, dumb eyes.”
As an afterthought, she adds, “Colleen, this might be the most stable relationship you’ve ever had.”
The skit concludes with agents announcing that the aliens have agreed to provide the government with access to their technology – assuming that one of the abductees agrees to go away with them.
“Well I can read the room, it’s me,” McKinnon says. The camera cuts away to what appears to be the door of a spaceship opening as McKinnon walks inside. She pauses in the doorframe and turns to address the audience.
“Well earth, I love ya,” she says, visibly emotional. “Thanks for letting me stay a while.”
McKinnon first joined the long-running sketch series in 2012, making her the first out lesbian cast-member to appear on “SNL.” She became known for her impersonations of public figures like Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Ellen DeGeneres, and Justin Bieber.
She had taken a brief hiatus from the show earlier this season to film “Joe vs. Carole,” a fictionalized limited-series based on the popular Netflix documentary, “Tiger King.”
Along with McKinnon, three other regular players bid farewell to “Saturday Night Live” this weekend. Also departing the series are Aidy Bryant, Pete Davidson, and Kyle Mooney.