Soon, 2013 will be another one for the books, and SNL’s last episode of year is upon us. Tonight, host Jimmy Fallon and musical guest Justin Timberlake will join forces for what we’re expecting to be an over-the-top end to the 2013 line-up. Of course, Timberlake isn’t just a melodious addition, as his hosting duties and link to Akiva Schaffer, Andy Samberg, and Jorma Taccone’s The Lonely Island have inspired a number of memorable characters that have appeared on the Studio 8H stage. Fallon is a former SNL cast member with a history of great impressions under his belt. While we’re anticipating comedy gold from the duo, let’s take a look back at this year’s best sketches — those that made us laugh, marked memorable pop culture moments, and those we couldn’t stop talking about.
Tina Fey was a smart choice to open SNL’s 39th season, and although the show seemed lost on how to utilize the former head writer and “Weekend Update” co-anchor when she wasn’t playing herself, along came this Girls sketch. The women featured strongly in the parody of the HBO series. This is the most we remember of newcomer Noël Wells all season, and her Hannah Horvath impression is spot-on. Vanessa Bayer’s Shosh and McKinnon’s Jessa were perfection, but it was Fey’s Blerta — Girls’ new Albanian cast member — who brought a refreshing twist to the widespread Girls mockery. Blerta puts the kibosh on the other characters’ petty problems (after all, the others don’t suffer from “old cow disease”) and reminds us that we’re all a little bit Blerta when watching and criticizing the show (minus the rubber hand).