Per the norm, Saturday Night Live served up some hilarious sketches this week. There was a parody of R. Kelly’s now-infamous interview with Gayle King. Pete Davidson joked about his relationship with Kate Beckinsale. But one of the best moments was also one of the biggest surprises — Gwyneth Paltrow made an SNL cameo to spoof herself. Spoiler alert? Paltrow poking fun at her lifestyle and wellness guru status was most definitely a laughing matter.
Paltrow appeared in the Weekend Update segment, where she played a manager of Goop by the name of Fifer James. A fellow employee by the name of Baskin Johns (played by Heidi Gardner) has been trying in vain to describe some of the lifestyle empire’s featured products. Despite saying she’s “done her homework” since clamming up during a previous appearance, Baskin once again can’t find the words to describe what Goop’s products are and what they do.
“So first up is our Goop body wash, infused with ginger and Ashwagandha,” Baskin says, struggling to elaborate on the second ingredient. “Ashwagandha is the number one thing, rated number one. You know what, I would love to tell you what ginger is instead.”
When host Michael Che insists she tells the audience what Ashwagandha is, Baskin claims that Paltrow found the mystery ingredient growing in the fictional country of Wakanda from Black Panther. Then she panics. Enter Paltrow’s “Fifer.”
Worried that she’ll be fired and sent to live in Missouri for a year (where she’ll have to work at a Bath & Body Works and grow out her roots), Baskin pleads Fifer for reassurance.
“No, she doesn’t believe in firing. Remember? It’s called conscious unemploying,” Paltrow’s Fifer responds, a clear reference to Paltrow and ex-husband Chris Martin’s famous phrase “conscious uncoupling”, used to describe their 2014 divorce.
But not even Paltrow’s Fifer can explain what Goop’s products are, what’s in them or why they’re being recommended. This, of course, is a cheeky nod to critics of the lifestyle brand who don’t feel as though science supports many of Paltrow’s Goop suggestions. Hey, at least the sketch solves one mystery, though: when asked by Che what Goop stands for, Baskin and Fifer state in unison, “Gwyneth Opens Our Paychecks.”
Well played, Paltrow. Well played.