When Saturday Night Live returns on Nov. 7, the comedy institution will pair pop’s strangest star with the presidential race’s most unlikely frontrunner. Yes, Sia (who almost never appears on camera) and Donald Trump (who doesn’t exist off-camera) will share the 30 Rock stage together, which we can only hope is an indication that Trump’s entire presidential campaign has been one prolonged performance art piece.
He’s hosted once before, she’s served as the musical guest once before… and that’s about all they have in common. That started us thinking about other odd couples in SNL‘s history. From ’80s oddities to more recent strange pairs, here are the 10 weirdest Saturday Night Live host/musical guest combinations.
David Carradine and The Pirates of Penzance (1980)
Actor/martial artist David Carradine (years away from playing Bill in Kill Bill) had two musical guests on his 1980 episode of SNL. Linda Ronstadt (nothing weird about that) and the cast of Gilbert & Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance. SNL steered clear from spotlighting 100-year-old musicals after that.
Donald Pleasance and Fear (1981)
Charisma-free actor Donald Pleasance — the inept hero in Halloween and James Bond villain Blofeld, the inspiration for Mike Myers’ Dr. Evil — hosted SNL in 1981, and they paired him with the blistering, visceral punk of Lee Ving’s Fear. They appeared in The Decline of Western Civilization, he plotted it as Bond’s No. 1 supervillain, and that’s about all these two entities had in common.
George Wendt/Francis Ford Coppola and Philip Glass (1986)
George Wendt — best known as Norm from Cheers — co-hosted SNL in 1986 with director Francis Ford Coppola. That’s odd enough, but throw in Philip Glass — a brilliant minimalist composer with almost zero mainstream commercial appeal — and you’ve got an evening that makes no sense.
Tony Danza and Laurie Anderson (1986)
Lovable regular guy Tony Danza once introduced unsuspecting Americans to Laurie Anderson’s idiosyncratic performance art/music/spoken word mélange. Impossible to tell who’s the boss in this pairing.
Fred Savage and Technotronic (1990)
Wonder Years star Fred Savage hosted SNL at the tender age of 13, and the show paired him with Technotronic, best (i.e., only) known for their Jock Jams hit “Pump Up the Jam.” A wonderful, weird moment in time that can never be recaptured.
Andrew Dice Clay and Julee Cruise (1990)
Stranger than anything David Lynch ever cooked up, misogyny poster boy Andrew Dice Clay once shared the screen with Twin Peaks songstress Julee Cruise — after Sinead O’Connor turned down an offer to be his musical guest.
Patrick Stewart and Salt-N-Pepa (1994)
Captain Picard meets “Push It.” All hail the ’90s.
Steve Forbes and Rage Against the Machine (1996)
SNL‘s ’90s booker clearly had a fantastic sense of humor, pairing rich man/then-Republican presidential hopeful Steve Forbes — a man who’s as good of a contender for the title “The Man” as there ever was – with aggressively anti-corporate outfit Rage Against the Machine. We’re guessing they didn’t switch numbers at the afterparty.
Brendan Fraser and Bjork (1997)
Presumably the idea here was to pair the planet’s most aggressively weird singer with Hollywood’s most aggressively normal actor.
Lindsay Lohan and Jack White (2012)
Given that Jack White seems to make his way through the world with a barely-controlled contempt for pop culture and its celebrity fixation, it seems like a cruel joke on the part of SNL that they’d pair him with Lindsay Lohan in 2012 — at that point, Lohan was most famous not for her acting or music (remember that?) but for being America’s favorite trainwreck.