Eli Manning solid as host of 'Saturday Night Live'
Eli Manning's hosting gig on "Saturday Night Live" paralleled his usual performance as Giants QB -- a clean showing, solid highlights, no major fumbles.
He even got in a dig on big brother Peyton, who struck "SNL" gold when he hosted in 2007.
And yes, if you stuck through the end of the show, you saw Eli wearing big hair and mascara and lipstick for a drag show skit, the kind of image that could leave die-hard Giants fans with indigestion.
Manning does that during some of his games, too. He is known for the occasional errant pass.
But this is a guy with two Super Bowl wins, two gut-check victories in front of more than 100 million worldwide TV viewers. You experience those moments, and suddenly live sketch comedy does not seem so daunting.
Eli's monologue saw him introducing his offensive line in the crowd and calling Saturday "definitely the third-most exciting night of my life" following those two Super Bowl wins over the New England Patriots.
"I finally feel like a real New Yorker," he said. "It took a few years, but now I'm an expert."
The "expert" then fielded questions from the audience, instructing them to go to Olive Garden (in New Jersey) for good NYC Italian food. "Hey, I play for the New York Giants, and all my games are played in New Jersey," he said.
He professed his love for the musical "Cats" -- it ended its Broadway run in 2000, by the way -- then discussed one of his favorite hobbies.
"I get some bulky shopping bags and three of the fattest kids I can find ... then we all walk hand-in-hand next to each other in Times Square, slow as heck," he said. "It's so fun."
The fun continued with a mock ad for the "Little Brothers" program, a send-up to bro Peyton's "United Way" skit.
"Little Brothers" starts with Eli providing mentorship to some children in a park. A nice, happy scene. Then things turn dark, with Manning dispensing wedgies, swirlies, arrows and abuse to bullying big brothers.
In one image, Eli stands over an open trunk, a boy (Andy Samberg) lying inside.
"Maybe now you'll learn to treat your younger brother with some respect, Peyton!" Eli says.
"My name's not Peyton!" the bullying older brother replies. "Whatever," Eli says as he slams the trunk.