SNL put Levine to work in numerous bits throughout the episode, from playing himself to taking on the role of a subpar Neil Diamond impersonator at an event thrown by Vice President Joe Biden. Levine sung in another Digital Short, entitled "YOLO," which was the best part of the evening - and you can view it by using this link.
There were also cameos by Cameron Diaz, Jerry Seinfeld and Andy Samberg in Levine's opening monologue, a takeoff on The Voice in which they vied to be his hosting "coach," and which also provided the obligatory glimpse of Levine shirtless.
Throughout the evening, Levine proved game to handle anything the show threw at him, and displayed his own dry wit. This was particularly evident in an awkward sketch in which Maroon 5 had a disagreement with fellow band Train in a local bar. The material fell flat - moreso considering that Maroon 5 actually went on a co-headlining tour with Train in the summer of 2010 - but what little laughs there were came from Levine's deadpan delivery of his lines.
The sketch may have turned out better if the other members of Maroon 5 had been able to appear as themselves, or if Train's Pat Monahan had turned up rather than being poorly impersonated. (He certainly could've passed muster: Monahan recently cameoed as himself in an episode of TBS's comedy Wedding Band.)
Other segments that missed the mark on Saturday night included a The Carrie Diaries-esque take on The Sopranos, a firehouse fundraiser bit which largely consisted of SNL cast member Bill Hader screaming, and one in which Levine went home with a disturbed Maroon 5 fan named Janet who admitted to drugging him.
The three-time Grammy winner is no stranger to comedy. Levine has previously appeared in other SNL sketches when his band is the musical guest, including playing Yanni during the episode hosted by It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia star Charlie Day, and participating in an armed stand-off with host Jeremy Renner.
Kendrick Lamar was the evening's musical guest. The full episode will be available for viewing on NBC.com later Sunday.
(c)2013 Brittany Frederick/Big Red Chairs. Appears at Examiner with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted.