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TV Critic’s Corner

Check out the new cast members on ‘SNL’

Heidi Gardner is one of the new cast members on “Saturday Night Live.”Zeb Wells via AP

“Saturday Night Live” returns this weekend with three new faces, hired to fill the spots left open by Bobby Moynihan, Sasheer Zamata, and Vanessa Bayer. Following up its highest-rated season in 23 years, which won an impressive nine Emmy Awards, “SNL” has also hired a few new writers, including Sam Jay, who grew up in Boston and came up through the local stand-up scene.

Chris Redd appeared in the mockumentary “Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping” in 2016 along with Andy Samberg, Joan Cusack, Bill Hader, and Maya Rudolph. He has also been on Comedy Central’s “Stand-Up Present” and Netflix’s “Disjointed.”

Heidi Gardner, a Groundlings alum, has been a voice actor on Crackle’s animated comedy “SuperMansion,” and she’s in the upcoming Melissa McCarthy movie “Life of the Party” along with Maya Rudolph and Matt Walsh.


Luke Null is a musical comedian, which means he can be seen with his guitar singing his material. He’s from Chicago and has worked at the improv theater iO Chicago, whose list of alums includes Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Chris Farley, and Amy Poehler.

A fun fact: This season, Kenan Thompson will set a record as the longest-serving SNL cast member at 15 seasons, eclipsing Darrell Hammond’s 14-season run.

Along with Jay, the list of new “SNL” writers includes Gary Richardson, Erik Marino, Andrew Dismukes, Steven Castillo, Claire Friedman, and Nimesh Patel.

Ryan Gosling hosts the season premiere Saturday, with musical guest Jay-Z.

Matthew Gilbert can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.