Leslie Jones dragged herself into the “glam bedroom” of her Beverly Hills home, dressed in a bathrobe and Ugg slippers. A hairdresser, with orange glasses and KN95, and a make-up artist, who was on the phone, asking a colleague which products to use, were waiting for him. Jones sat down in front of a mirror surrounded by light bulbs. A Bob Marley ashtray rested on a cart of nail polish bottles in front of a wig cupboard. “I have to throw one,” Jones said.
“I set up this room because, even before the pandemic, me and my hairdresser and my makeup artists were always in a hotel room or in someone’s living room or something, getting ready.” , she continued. “For blacks, that’s how we’ve always done our hair, in the kitchen. My mom used to make the kitchen table her store, and I was like, “Mom, the kitchen smells like burnt hair.” “
“Are we going to work at the same time? Asked the hairdresser. The makeup artist’s shoes had the words “pray” and “wait” on them.
“You’re all new, so let me tell you how it goes,” Jones said. His regular team was absent. “It’s different than getting ready for ‘SNL’, where someone behind you dresses up like a full frog.”
Jones, who left “Saturday Night Live” two years ago, was preparing for a day hosting the reboot of the game show “Supermarket Sweep” – a timed grocery store run – which first aired in the sixties. Teams of two walk the aisles, fill their carts and answer trivial questions about consumer goods.
Jones was a fan of the program in its eighties incarnation. “Watching the show was very relaxing for me because I could answer questions,” she said. “When you watch ‘Jeopardy’ you can’t answer any of that bullshit. But you ask someone for the names of toilet paper, shit, I’m gonna name all that shit. She heard about a casting for the contestants at the time and decided to give it a try. She worked at Roscoe’s House of Chicken and Waffles, and she recruited a colleague as a teammate. “On the weekends I would take her to the grocery store,” she says. “I trained her.” But they never did on the show. Jones continued, “Everyone loves the show now because it brings back shopping. Especially with the pandemic, it’s like, “Are we going to have Black Friday again?” An exchange meeting? “
“We call it the hawk,” she said, looking at the bun the barber was building.
Jones explained that after she became well known, she could no longer go shopping. “I fucking miss it so much,” she said. “Whenever I get the chance to go to a grocery store, which I don’t often do, it’s like you take me to a club.” She described being at a Whole Foods and noticing someone looking at her. “I’m from Compton, so the first thing I think of is, damn it!” I’m not stealing anything! she said. “And then I’m like, ‘Oh shit! I’m Leslie Jones. ‘ “
(She thought about other grocery stores. Erewhon: “Their hot bar is a bomb, but it’s a whole bunch of fucking men in buns buying vitamins.”)
Her stylist appeared in the doorway and asked Jones what she wanted to wear to the studio. For the welcome concert, they had perfected a look of sports coats and sneakers. “I did a Monty Hall type thing,” Jones said, referring to the longtime “Let’s Make a Deal” host. “I have a different jacket for each show.”
She is not picky about clothes. “I don’t care about my appearance. I like to tell the joke, ”she said. “It’s something they didn’t realize at ‘SNL’ until too late. That I’m not just an idiot. That I can actually have other emotions and still be funny. She continued, “Lucille Ball was beautiful. She didn’t care to be beautiful. She did what was necessary to get this fucking joke across. Jones said that, if necessary, she would fall back on her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice: “I’ll be a good detective.”
She explained why hosting a game show appealed to her more than pretending to be a politician on “SNL.” “I smoke too much weed to be other people,” she said. “I don’t remember that shit. But I remember who I am.
In 2016, after her appearance in the all-female reboot of “Ghostbusters,” she was fiercely harassed on Twitter, and company CEO Jack Dorsey invited her to talk about hate on the internet. “Now I want to talk to Jeff Bezos,” she said. “But with him, I’d be like, ‘I need to know where your brain is. “”
She examined her face and her hair in the mirror: “You really did a good job on something that I’m just going to sweat.” ??