If we're going to get technical, last night's (December 6) episode of "Saturday Night Live" was hosted by James Franco, with Nicki Minaj as the musical guest. However Nicki did more than her fair share of performing, spitting from the mic and making sketch appearances as herself and as a few very notable female celebrities.
But Franco, who was there to promote his upcoming movie "The Interview" with Seth Rogen (who also popped by for a cameo in the monologue and last sketch of the evening) was more than happy to share the spotlight with the female MC.
First, Nicki went full Beyonce:
Our own network throws the baddest holiday party around, broadcasting MTV's Jingle Ballerz as the biggest music stars come together on a holy night for a Hip Hop Nativity scene. Hosted by KaTyler Smyth (Pete Davidson), Rihanna (Sasheer Zamata) kicks things off as she sings "Shine Bright Like A Bright Star," and introduces the rapping Three Wise Men: Eminem (Taran Killam) Riff Raff (James Franco) and Rick Ross (Kenan Thompson).
And since there wouldn't be a baby G without Joseph and his Queen Bee, up next is the original "Teen Mom," the Virgin Mary Beyonce (Nicki Minaj) and Justin Bieber (an excellent Kate McKinnon). Nicki has no trouble emulating Queen Bey, flawlessly throwing out "He Woke Up Like Dis" and cluing us in on what that revealing wardrobe rehearsal pic was all about. Baby Jesus is of course Kanye (Jay Pharoah) shrieking and rapping about being a God and his dad is a God. It's all a bit complicated.
Next, Nicki goes full-frontal, but as Kim Kardashian:
Because we just can't stop talking about Kim Kardashian's Paper magazine cover that broke the Internet, she (played by Minaj) stops by the "Weekend Update" desk to clear things up with co-anchor Colin Jost. Turns out the series of photos didn't have proper backgrounds or context. Cut to the correct images (with Minaj's face on Kim Kardashian's bod), which take place in a Gynecology office, in front of a math chalkboard (x = full-frontal), and the Keystone pipeline and she really was just trying to raise awareness for relevant educational issues, right?
Moving on to the musical portion of the evening, Nicki and Skylar Grey performed their collaboration "Bed Of Lies":
For her first performance, Nicki brought along Skylar Grey for their collaboration "Bed Of Lies." Wearing a tight red spandex crop top and leggings, the rapper stands out against the cool blues and purples of the serene set and backing piano melody. The song, which she first premiered at the 2014 MTV EMA speaks to tough emotional times with an ex.
Then to close out the night, Nicki got even more personal:
Nicki broke down barriers with her closing song, mixing up "Only" and "All Things Go." She brought the attitude, calling out the audience several times saying "Where my bad girls at?" for the beginning lines of the track featuring YMCMB rappers Drake and Lil Wayne along with Chris Brown. Minaj then took a beat, asking "Can I get real with ya'll?" before launching into her incredibly personal song "All Things Go." The most recent off of her upcoming album, The Pinkprint, the track deals with a former engagement, death of a cousin and pregnancy scare.
While the subject matter was heavy, Nicki ended the set flashing her signature smile, giddy with her performance. The rapper looked far from unnatural in the 8H studio spotlight. Next time she's on the bill we hope she's outright hosting.
Martin Freeman and Charli XCX will host and perform December 13.