When the newest season of “Saturday Night Live” premieres Oct. 1., the show’s first-ever nonbinary cast member will also make their debut.
Molly Kearney, a Cleveland-born comedian who has frequently performed in Chicago and Los Angeles, was recently announced as one of the latest additions to the long-running sketch comedy show. In an Instagram post about the casting news, Kearney expressed their excitement with a simple caption: “MEATBRICK MOVED TO NEW YORK!!!!”
It’s been a big year for Kearney, as they were also featured as a Rockford Peach on Amazon Prime’s 2022 hit reboot of “A League of Their Own.” Before that, they were cast in another reboot – a Disney+ 2021 television show update of “The Mighty Ducks.”
They have also performed live – often. Kearney was selected to take part in Comedy Central’s “Up Next” showcase in 2019, after a national search. They additionally were a cast member of long-running independent stand-up showcase The Lincoln Lodge, and produced The Blackout Diaries, in which professional comedians and willing individuals alike share stories from wild nights out on the town.
Kearney’s comedy is observational; their delivery, direct. See their pinned tweet about KitKat bars being “the lasagna of chocolate,” or their stand-up bit about coming out to their brothers, for examples.
SNL has made a number of historic hires in recent years, in a bid to diversify its cast and expand its comedic potential. In 2016, Melissa Villaseñor became the show’s first Latina cast member. Bowen Yang signed on as its first Asian player in 2019. Punkie Johnson, a 2020 addition, is the show’s first out, Black woman cast member.
In addition to Kearney, the show will introduce three other new featured players: Marcello Hernandez, Michael Longfellow and Devon Walker. To date, the show has had 163 cast members in all – this season, 18 players will be in the rotation, including mainstays Kenan Thompson and Cecily Strong.
Actor Miles Teller will host the premiere of SNL’s 48th season, and rapper Kendrick Lamar will be the musical guest.