While Basically Everyone Broke During Ryan Gosling's Beavis And Butt-Head SNL Sketch, Kenan Thompson Explains Why He Didn’t

While Basically Everyone Broke During Ryan Gosling's Beavis And Butt-Head SNL Sketch, Kenan Thompson Explains Why He Didn’t

Kenan Thompson is one of SNL’s most legendary and major cast members, as proven over his record 21 seasons on NBC’s late-night comedy milestone. As we continue to see the roster of SNL Season 49 hosts bring folks like Ryan Gosling back to Studio 8H to tangle with Thompson and his castmates, the results have been literally laughable. But surprisingly, in the already iconic Beavis and Butt-Head sketch that saw the Barbie actor, Heidi Gardner and more break with laughter, Kenan was a pillar of strength.

And for those wondering how he did it, Kenan Thompson went in depth with Variety on his process. But for those of you thinking that all of those years on All That have left him immune to breaking, that totally isn’t the case. If anything, the dress rehearsal for “Beavis and Butt-Head” proved to be the saving grace in this particular scenario, as explained by Thompson in the following remarks: 

It’s hit or miss. Sometimes I can hold it, sometimes I can’t. I got lucky on ‘Beavis and Butt-Head’ that I cracked so hard at dress rehearsal. I haven’t had a break like that in a while where I was in tears and I couldn’t talk. It was that funny to me and what I was about to say next was funny to me. And I was frozen. I was literally quivering and then I started to panic. Because I was like, I can’t talk without cry-talking. I don’t want to waste the line! It could throw off everything. It was like, three seconds of just chaos.

While most of the cast and Ryan Gosling broke during this SNL sketch, which has been quite popular on YouTube and social media, somehow, even with Kenan Thompson breaking that hard during the dress rehearsal, the man kept it together during the live broadcast.

Which honestly, is even more commendable, because everyone else was probably still breaking thinking about the times that he gave into laughter. If you want to challenge yourself to try not to laugh during "Beavis and Butt-Head," feel free to watch the sketch, included below in its entirety: 

While he wasn’t trying to paint himself as an overly serious actor, Mr. Thompson admitted that the choice to remain stoic was absolutely conscious. What’s more, he cited his dedication to the work, which he respects as a comedian and friend to sketch writers like Mikey Day. Firming up his position on why he takes his comedy so seriously, Kenan Thompson explained himself as follows: 

Not that I’m a control freak, but I definitely had a moment where I [realized I] don’t have control at all. I can’t just sit here and laugh! We’re supposed to be doing a job. And I’m laughing and the camera is just stuck on me because it’s my line and I can’t get it out.

When you’re on a job like Saturday Night Live for almost 21 years, it’s easy to fall into a groove. Learning that Kenan Thompson can fall into that groove, while also admitting he’s as susceptible to the giggles as anyone else, just makes him all the more admirable. 

Keep that in mind as you continue to watch SNL’s 49th Season on the 2024 TV schedule when it returns this weekend at 11:35 P.M. ET, on NBC.