Saturday Night Live's newest cast member is so young he can't even drink at the after-show party


Last week's Saturday Night Live season-opener introduced two new faces, one of which borders on cherubic.

Twenty-year-old comedian Pete Davidson can't buy a beer to celebrate his ascension to sketch comedy’s highest ranks, but the consensus online is that he stole the show last Saturday with his bawdy Weekend Update appearance as the show's “Resident Young Person.” He and Michael Che — previously a writer for the show — are the only additions to a cast that lost five members from last season.

So why did Lorne Michaels clear the bench to make room for someone too young to remember Chris Farley?

Despite his youth, Davidson has been appearing on TV for several years, including stand-up on Jimmy Kimmel Live and two seasons on MTV2’s brotastic reality TV-comedy fusion, Guy Code. He's the fourth-youngest performer ever hired by SNL, which already puts him in some incredible company. The three younger cast members are household names: Eddie Murphy, Anthony Michael Hall and Robert Downey Jr.  

Davidson’s handful of moments in front of the camera were marked by an “aw, shucks” shlubbiness that comes from his work in stand-up. He uses that adolescent persona to get away with sophomoric jokes — about male heterosexual squeamishness, say — that audiences might balk at.

Davidson is clearly bait for younger viewers, and if he can make his dopey bro character appeal to the core audience of a show twice his age, Michaels will have picked another winner.

Will you keep The World spinning?

Donations from listeners like you are absolutely crucial in funding the great music and human-centered global news you hear on The World. Recurring gifts provide predictable, sustainable support — letting our team focus on telling the stories you don’t hear anywhere else. If you make a gift of $100 or pledge $10/month we’ll send you a curated playlist highlighting some of the team's favorite music from the show Donate today to keep The World spinning.