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6 sidesplitting characters that prove Kristen Wiig is an ‘SNL’ legend

By Dan Heching, CNN

(CNN) — When it comes to the storied legacy of “Saturday Night Live,” most would agree that Kristen Wiig is up there with the greats. The hilarious and lasting characters she created during her seven-year tenure on the long-running NBC sketch show stand among the best ever seen on the show.

This weekend will see Wiig’s fifth time as host – thereby initiating her into the coveted Five-Timers Club – and it’s anybody’s guess which of her beloved characters she might bring back for the occasion, whether it’s her zany impersonation of Björk or her strange sister Dooneese from the “Lawrence Welk Show” skits, which perhaps didn’t age so well.

Before the “Palm Royale” star takes the stage at Studio 8H this Saturday night along with musical guest Raye, here’s a list of Wiig’s best characters.

Vanda the ‘Super Showcase’ model

Wiig famously lost it alongside fellow cast member Maya Rudolph in this laugh-out-loud take on “The Price is Right,” where she played a sultry game show model with a hard-to-place accent who shows off all the lavish prizes to be won in the final round. If Vanda and her pal show up, it’ll be a good time, and “that’s a Chicken Man guarantee!”

Target Lady

Lots of folks still make Target runs, and Wiig just this week revived her Target Lady – that super-sprightly checkout staffer with a severe bowl cut and a penchant to overshare – in ads for the mega retailer. Here’s hoping we see her on Saturday night as well. Just a tip though, if you’re checking out with Target Lady, it’s best to have exact change!


The oneupmanship is real and very intense when it comes to Penelope, the perennially weird hair-twirler who casually – and always as an aside – feels the need to share how much better she is than you. We’re talking everywhere, from a Thanksgiving soup kitchen with Anne Hathaway to a wedding reception with Taylor Swift and Andy Samberg.

Karina from ‘The Californians’

While this fan-favorite skit was definitely a group effort with many former “SNL” cast members (including Fred Armisen and Bill Hader), Wiig’s 405 freeway-taking blonde bombshell was the glue, especially when Hader would famously crack up in the middle of the skit. Here’s hoping Wiig’s return is the occasion to resurrect the Californians. Just make sure to take the 10!


Way back in 2009, Wiig visited “Weekend Update” for Barbie’s 50th birthday… as the rigid plastic doll herself. In the interim, of course, the Mattel doll has invaded the public consciousness and cultural discourse on levels heretofore unseen thanks to Greta Gerwig’s 2023-defining movie, so who knows – perhaps Wiig will brandish those jointless plastic arms once again.

Surprise Sue!

Oftentimes the simplest skits are the funniest on “SNL,” and suffice it to say that viewers will burst with joy if Sue, the overly excited family member who just can’t keep the secret of a surprise party to herself, shows up on Saturday. We might all be left saying, “Oh my Gooooood!

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