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Marvel Cinematic Universe star Benedict Cumberbatch introduced a little madness to NBC's Saturday Night Live this weekend during his second time as host of NBC's long-running sketch comedy series. To celebrate the wide theatrical release of Marvel Studios' new Doctor Strange movie — in the Multiverse of Madness — the actor made fun of his blockbuster stint as the Master of the Mystic Arts in the show's opening monologue.
"I've gotta be honest. Most of the sketch writers this week, they pitch me sketches every day and most were about Doctor Strange," he said, drawing a great deal of applause and cheers from the audience. He continued: "It's great, I love the guy [and] I love playing the character. The film's doing really well [at the box office], but I have been in other films and Lorne [Michaels] said to me, 'Like...what?'" This led into to a bit about the actor's Oscar-nominated performance in Netflix's The Power of the Dog and Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the awards ceremony.
Cumberbatch also took the time to give a shoutout to his wife, Sophie Hunter, in honor of Mother's Day. Naturally, this ode to the mother of his three children included another jab at Stephen Strange.
"I'm seriously in constant awe of you," he told her. "For a start, you gave birth to our three beautiful boys and that alone is a minor miracle as any woman will tell you. Meanwhile, according to you, I was off dressing up as a wizard. Technically, it's a sorcerer. Wizards have robes, I have a cloak — it's a thing, don't worry. But seriously, Sophie, I really hope that when you think about it, you realize that it evens out. Because if you think being a mum is hard, try doing this..."
Epic music started to play as the actor pretended to conjure up a bit of magic (without a large VFX budget to back up the pantomime, the hand motions do look rather silly). "Yeah, I just opened a portal," he joked. "You're welcome."
Watch the full monologue below:
Multiverse of Madness co-star Elizabeth Olsen (Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch) made a surprise cameo appearance in a sketch about Chloe Fineman's role as a full-time SNL understudy. Fineman dresses up in Wanda's comics-accurate Halloween costume from WandaVision and tricks Cumberbatch into thinking she is Olsen. Seconds later, the real Elizabeth Olsen shows up in the dressing room, causing Cumberbatch to question all of reality. "Oh my God," he mutters. "The multiverse is real."
Check it out:
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is now playing in theaters everywhere. You can check out the full episode of Saturday Night Live streaming now on Peacock.