The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

133k votes 7.8k voters 321k views 156 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Characters that have appeared on SNL only.

The best Saturday Night Live characters of all time include classic, unforgettable characters brought to life by the best cast members on SNL. The list itself is impressive, filled with hilarious characters from the greatest SNL shows from the 1970s, 1980s and beyond. Whether it's men like Eddie Murphy's Buckwheat, Chris Farley's Matt Foley or John Belushi's Samurai, or female SNL characters like Rachel Dratch's Debbie Downer, the characters on this list represent the absolute greatest - those that made us laugh for days after the show aired. This is a vote ranked list, so be sure to cast your vote for your personal favorite SNL character ever (and vote down any characters you don't like). If you don't see your favorite popular SNL characters on the list, feel free to add them!

Saturday Night Live's original sketch comedy represents some of the funniest ever on television. Since the show first aired in 1975, so many talented comedians and actors have given their all to make sure everyone kept laughing. Whether it's the recurring characters from the early years like The Coneheads and The Blues Brothers, or more modern classics like Chris Kattan's Mango, Adam Sandler's Opera Man or, more recently, Bill Hader's Stefon, all are memorable and all are truly funny.

Who are the best characters on SNL? For more great SNL info, check out these lists of the best 'Saturday Night Live' original cast sketches, monologues, sketches from the 1980s and the 1990s. Ever wonder who the most frequent 'SNL' hosts are? There's a list for that, along with information about the youngest and oldest 'SNL' hosts ever - and 'SNL' hosts who were banned. Enjoy!
Collection Photo:  NBC
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  1. 50
    + 342
    - 299


    Eddie Murphy

    ;
  2. 49
    + 586
    - 440

    added by JimJenkins
    Kristen Wiig Kristen Wiig

    ;
  3. 48
    + 651
    - 409
    Bob Swerski is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    Bob Swerski George Wendt Da Bearsss!

  4. 47
    + 570
    - 429
    Drunk Uncle is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Drunk Uncle Bobby Moynahan

  5. 46
    + 771
    - 333
    James Brown is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by Mavsc79
    James Brown Eddie Murphy Eddie Murphey

  6. 45
    + 631
    - 585
    Toonces the Driving Cat is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by zxray
    Toonces the Driving Cat

  7. 44
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    - 800

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Julia Sweeney

    ;
  8. 43
    + 553
    - 335
    Gene Frenkle is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    Gene Frenkle Will Ferrell Cowbell!

  9. 42
    + 627
    - 532

    added by JimJenkins
    Will Forte

    ;
  10. 41
    + 654
    - 554
    Robert Goulet is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    Robert Goulet Will Ferrell Will Ferrell

  11. 40
    + 889
    - 443
    The Ambiguously Gay Duo is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by zxray
    The Ambiguously Gay Duo Stephen Colbert, Steve Carrell, Robert Smigel

  12. 39
    + 895
    - 588
    The Continental is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    The Continental Christopher Walken

  13. 38
    + 518
    - 308

    added by JimJenkins
    Chevy Chase

    ;
  14. 37
    + 745
    - 634


    Adam Sandler

    ;
  15. 36
    + 797
    - 534
    The Ladies Man is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    The Ladies Man Tim Meadows Tim Meadows

  16. 35
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    - 400

    added by JimJenkins
    Gilda Rander

    ;
  17. 34
    + 995
    - 499
    The Roxbury Guys is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    The Roxbury Guys Will Ferrell, Chris Kattan Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan

  18. 33
    + 645
    - 287
    Barry Gibb is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Barry Gibb Jimmy Fallon

  19. 32
    + 846
    - 422
    Dancing Mascot is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    Dancing Mascot Justin Timberlake "Bring it on down to Omeleteville!"

  20. 31
    + 1,030
    - 536

    added by JimJenkins
    Don Novello

    ;
  21. 30
    + 972
    - 604


    Bill Murray

    ;
  22. 29
    + 880
    - 666

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Martin Short

    ;
  23. 28
    + 895
    - 735

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Mike Myer

    ;
  24. 27
    + 1,265
    - 686


    Molly Shannon

    ;
  25. 26
    + 903
    - 490
    Harry Caray is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by zxray
    Harry Caray Will Ferrell

  26. 25
    + 1,020
    - 480

    added by JimJenkins
    Eddie Murphy

    ;
  27. 24
    + 989
    - 426
    The Delicious Dish Girls is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by JimJenkins
    The Delicious Dish Girls Ana Gasteyer, Molly Shannon, Alec Baldwin Pete Schweddy's Balls

  28. 23
    + 1,211
    - 591

    added by mb29
    Rachel Dratch

    ;
  29. 22
    + 886
    - 242
    Burt Reynolds is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Burt Reynolds Norm MacDonald

  30. 21
    + 1,224
    - 600


    John Belushi

    ;
  31. 20
    + 1,131
    - 685


    Dan Aykroyd

    ;
  32. 19
    + 1,144
    - 546
    George Bush is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    George Bush Dana Carvey

  33. 18
    + 1,381
    - 666


    Walter Williams

    ;
  34. 17
    + 1,220
    - 299
    Chippendale Auditions Dancers is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Chippendale Auditions Dancers Patrick Swayze, Chris Farley

  35. 16
    + 1,493
    - 430
    Roseanne Rosannadana is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Roseanne Rosannadana Gilda Radner

  36. 15
    + 1,402
    - 515


    Dana Carvey

    ;
  37. 14
    + 1,490
    - 497
    Bruce Dickinson is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Bruce Dickinson Christopher Walken

  38. 13
    + 1,436
    - 588
    The Festrunk Brothers is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    The Festrunk Brothers Steve Martin, Dan Aykroyd

  39. 12
    + 1,440
    - 559
    George W. Bush is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    George W. Bush Will Ferrell

  40. 11
    + 1,247
    - 457
    Mr. Robinson is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    added by zxray
    Mr. Robinson Eddie Murphy

  41. 10
    + 2,091
    - 753
    Sarah Palin is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Sarah Palin Tina Fey

  42. 9
    + 2,634
    - 952
    Stefon is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Stefon Bill Hader

  43. 8
    + 1,814
    - 671
    Spartan Spirit Cheerleaders is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Spartan Spirit Cheerleaders Will Ferrell, Cheri Oteri

  44. 7
    + 1,601
    - 576


    Dan Aykroyd

    ;
  45. 6
    + 1,752
    - 549


    John Belushi

    ;
  46. 5
    + 2,268
    - 483
    Alex Trebek is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Alex Trebek Will Ferrell

  47. 4
    + 1,938
    - 674
    Buckwheat is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Saturday Night Live Characters of All Time


    Buckwheat Eddie Murphy

  48. 3
    + 1,923
    - 706


    Mike Myers

    ;
  49. 2
    + 2,242
    - 746


    Dana Carvey

    ;
  50. 1
    + 2,613
    - 711

    the people's #1 & most listed
    Chris Farley

    ;
157 +

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