Mick Jagger Sings at Kristen Wiig’s Graduation

Mick Jagger’s hosting of “Saturday Night Live” season finale was an odd one. It was a showcase for his old songs, one of which he sang with Arcade Fire (“The Last Time”), two more he did with Foo Fighters (“19th Nervous Breakdown” and “It’s Only Rock n’ Roll”) and one blues ditty he dashed off in five minutes with Jeff Beck about the presidential election (with the moral: Don’t let Mitt Romney touch your hair).

But mostly everybody else sang Stones songs – Fred Armisen and Bobby Moynihan in a karaoke sketch; the Arcade Fire later for two more Stones songs during a sweet and awkward send-off for Kristen Wiig.

Few hosts have been as comfortable on stage as Jagger – whose years of performances precede even “SNL.” But he apparently only has one comic persona – the bespectacled fop, whom he played in the karaoke sketch (he was too shy to get up and sing Stones songs), the Secret Word sketch (where he was an effeminate action star misplaying the game), and a patriarch in a California soap opera. (He did imitate Steven Tyler, but Tyler’s career has been spent imitating Jagger so it was more like returning the compliment).

It didn’t matter – the main theme of what was left of the show was Wiig, who got to pick some of her favorite old characters to play one more time: The missahapen Lennon Sister substitute in the Lawrence Welk sketch that opened the show (with Jon Hamm doing a cameo as the Italian singer), the clueless starlet on Secret Word, and even, in “The Californians” an echo of the first character she was allowed to do.

Everybody came out to greet her at the end – Steve Martin, who was unrecognizable in the Californian sketch, the current cast, all manner of past cast members from Chris Kattan and Rachel Dratch to Amy Poehler — and Lorne Michaels.

It was the biggest send off for a cast member ever maybe, and Wiig was worth it – she’s almost singlehandedly carried the show for some very dodgy years. But as the returning cast members showed, nobody ever leaves “SNL” these days and attitude sems to be are all welcome back whenever (such as Chris Parnell,” returning to do a “Lazy Sunday 2” digital short (this time they go to “Sister Act”).

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