Bring it on down to ratingsville! Justin Timberlake not only brought out some of “Saturday Night Live”‘s all-stars during his hosting/performing gig this weekend, he also boosted the show to its best ratings in over a year.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Timberlake’s entry into the five-timers club put up preliminary Nielsen ratings of 5.9 with a 15 share. Those were the best numbers since a January 7, 2012 show hosted by Charles Barkley featuring musical guest Kelly Clarkson following a prime-time NFL playoff game.
Saturday night’s figures were up 23 percent from the previous week, when comedian Kevin Hart hosted and Macklemore and Ryan Lewis performed.
This season’s best ratings so far came in January with host Adam Levine and musical guest Kendrick Lamar, who pulled a 2.7 rating with adults 18-49 and 7.3 million viewers. Final numbers for the Timberlake episode will be released later in the week and they are expected to beat Levine’s rating and total viewer figures.
Timberlake had plenty of help on the show, from an opening skit that included fellow five timer hosts Alec Baldwin, Steve Martin, Tom Hanks and Candice Bergen, as well as returning cast member Andy Samberg and Jay-Z for a performance of the pair’s hit single, “Suit & Tie.”
The latter made noise when JT took a not-so-subtle at Kanye West during “Suit,” when he changed up the lyrics to “My hits so sick/Got rappers acting dramatic.”
The line appeared to be a shot back at ‘Ye after the rapper took aim at the song during an in-concert rant a few weeks ago, saying, “Remind me again who’s the original superfly? I got love for Hov but I ain’t f—ing with that ‘Suit & Tie.’”