Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images Pete Davidson
Now 28, Davidson joined SNL as a featured player during the show's 40th season premiere in September 2014. Then just 20 years old, he was the show's first cast member to be born in the 1990s and remains one of its youngest stars ever.
Saturday night's episode featured Russian Doll star Natasha Lyonne as host, with musical guest Japanese Breakfast. It also marked the reported final appearances for Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, and Kyle Mooney as repertory players.
"I appreciate SNL always having my back and allowing me to work on myself and grow. Thank you to Lorne for never giving up on me or judging me even when everyone else was and for believing in me and allowing me to have a place that I could call home with memories that will last a lifetime," he signed off.
Hours before the season finale, Davidson confirmed his exit from the NBC series in an Instagram post shared by his friend and frequent collaborator Dave Sirus.
"From Pete: This video was taken eight years ago. Jerrod [Carmichael] sent it to me last night and it made me super emotional in the best way. In the video I had just gotten back from doing my very first Update and sketch. It's crazy to think that today I'll be doing my last one. When I got the show I was 20 years old and I had no idea what I was doing. I still don't but especially back then," the caption read.
"I wasn't really a sketch performer I was just a stand up. I knew I could never keep up or go toe to toe with a Kenan Thompson or a Kate McKinnon so I was super scared at figuring out what I could possibly bring to or do for such a historic, respected show and platform. I figured since I'm a stand up I'll just try my stand up and personal bits on Weekend Update as myself and I'm so glad I did. I got to share so much with this audience and literally grow up in front of your eyes. We were together through the good and the bad, the happiest and the darkest of times," it noted.
"I owe Lorne Michaels and everyone at SNL my life. I'm so grateful and I wouldn't be here without them. I appreciate you guys always having my back and sticking up for me even when that wasn't the popular opinion. Thank you for always believing in me and sticking by my side even when it seemed comical. Thank you for teaching me life values, how to grow up and for giving me memories that will last a lifetime," the message continued.
"SNL is my home. I'm so happy and sad about tonight's show. For so many reasons I can't explain. Can't wait to be back next year in a [John] Mulaney musical number," Davidson's note concluded.
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The Kardashians star spoofed The Bachelorette in one sketch that featured real Bachelor Nation star Tyler Cameron alongside Blake Griffin, Chris Rock, John Cena, Jesse Williams, Chace Crawford, and pal Amy Schumer — but it was Davidson who really caught her her eye that night.
The pair shared a smooch during a sketch in which she played Jasmine and he played Aladdin. Kardashian, 41, later admitted on the Not Skinny but Not Fat podcast in April: "When we kissed, I was just like, 'Hmm!' "
"It was a stage kiss, but it was still like, a little zing. It wasn't anything like a super, crazy feeling. I was just like, 'Hmm,' and then I was like, 'Wow, I really haven't kissed anyone else in 10 years, so maybe I'm just like being stupid and it's just nothing and it's just a stage kiss," she shared.
Shortly after her SNL appearance, Kardashian and Davidson were spotted holding hands on a ride at Knott's Scary Farm. Since then, the two have enjoyed dates on Staten Island, where Davidson is from, celebrated Davidson's birthday together in November, and even attended the Met Gala together.
NBC Pete Davidson on Saturday Night Live
The "King of Staten Island" actor is already booked for his next gig as the star of the upcoming Peacock series, Bupkis, which will depict a fictionalized version of his own life featuring Edie Falco as Davidson's mother.
Last month, Bupkis was picked up for a straight-to-series order. Davidson will co-write the show alongside Sirus as well as Judah Miller. The trio will also executive produce the project with SNL creator Michaels.
"Pete Davidson is one of the most sought-after comedians today with his smart, one-of-a-kind humor and honest point of view," said Susan Rovner, chairman of entertainment content at NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. "Bupkis will showcase Pete's funny, surprising and unfiltered brand of comedy audiences have come to love as we continue to bolster our Peacock comedy slate."