Cecily Strong's Impression of "Serial" Host Sarah Koenig Is Unreal
"Saturday Night Live" and "Serial" are off the air right now, and Cecily Strong's impression of "Serial" host Sarah Koenig at the Peabody Awards ceremony reminds us of how much we miss them both.
"Serial," the addictive and compelling podcast about the 1999 murder of Hae Min Lee, a young woman in Baltimore County, Maryland, and the man convicted of killing her, her ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed, who has maintained his innocence throughout the last 16 years, won a Peabody Award back in April, the first podcast ever to be honored by the venerable organization. The ceremony took place on May 31, but the show will air Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on Pivot TV.
Produced by the creators of "This American Life" and hosted by Koenig, the first season of "Serial" told the story of Lee and Syed via extensive interviews, rehashing of evidence, and conversations with witnesses. The ten-hour podcast, which sifted through the complicated case over the course of 12 episodes, was driven by Koenig, whose distinctive hosting style drew the attention of celebrity fans and "SNL" star Strong who did her own spin on Koenig for the show. "You guys, I don't do impressions," Strong said at the Peabody Awards ceremony in the video posted above, "but that's how obsessed I am."
At the ceremony, Strong revisited her Koenig impression, to the delight of the crowd, which included Koenig herself. "Serial was so influential, that the Court of Special Appeals agreed to hear the testimony from Asia McClain," Strong started, before inching closer to the microphone to get in character. "You remember her, she was in the library after school let out. She's running late, to get a ride from her boyfriend, Derek. She saw Adnan, they talked about Hae. He seemed calm," Strong said in perfect mimic of Koenig's hosting cadence.
Serial won't be back in weekly rotation until next year, when it returns for a second season, but this impression and frequent listening to Undisclosed: The State v. Adnan Syed, a podcast that continues to follow the case, but it's not affiliated with Serial, can help fill the void.
Strong only gave a glimpse of her version of Koenig at the Peabody Awards, but it's spot on as you can see in the original "SNL" sketch, where Strong played Koenig investigating the story of Kris Kringle (Kyle Mooney), an elf who allegedly leaves presents in people's homes.
You can watch her Sarah Koenig impression at the Peabody Awards ceremony here and you can watch the original "SNL" sketch below:
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