Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live (often shortened to just SNL) was an immensely popular sketch-comedy show starting in 1975 on NBC, but as it became more politically correct, it predictably became less funny starting in the 2000s. SNL's poor attempt to parody Sarah Palin was widely promoted by the remainder of the liberal media. Sometimes, SNL does make fun of liberals like Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, but it still attacks conservatives and their views. Indeed, after Donald Trump won the American presidency, SNL's writers began using staunch liberal actor Alec Baldwin to unfairly parody Trump whenever humanly possible. In fact, the episode that aired after the 2016 Presidential Election featured a somber opening with cast member Kate McKinnon, dressed as Hillary Clinton, performing the Leonard Cohen song, Hallelujah, who had died earlier that week. SNL continues to run weekly from fall to spring each year despite its lack of cultural influence and increase in liberal politicization. Despite this, however, there was at least one skit that actually does attempt to mock liberal values, where a business does mind-reading technology on a dog, Max the Pug, and Max turns out to be a Trump supporter and ends up refuting a whole lot of liberal arguments easily in a very humorous manner.
In the past, particularly in the 1970s and 1980s, the show turned some of its minor players into feature film actors including:
- Dan Akroyd (The Blues Brothers and Ghostbusters)
- Eddie Murphy (Coming to America, Trading Places and The Nutty Professor)
- Mike Myers (Wayne's World, Austin Powers, and Shrek)
- Julia Louis Dreyfuss (Seinfeld)
- Adam Sandler (50 First Dates and Happy Gilmore)
- Harry Shearer (The Simpsons and This is Spinal Tap)
On the weekend before the 2018 general election, Saturday Night Live aired an attack on "unusually looking" Republican candidates. Liberal comedian Pete Davidson placed on the screen the photo of the one-eyed Texas congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw amid much laughter though Davidson said in his remarks that Crenshaw had lost the eye in war. Crenshaw, who did not see the live broadcast, said that any apology that might come from Saturday Night Live would be insincere and therefore unacceptable. Instead, he urged the program to donate $1 million to veterans' causes.
Grayson Quay wrote at The American Conservative website:
|“||On May 8, the notoriously left-wing Vice ran an opinion piece by Harry Cheadle with the headline “‘SNL’ Cold Opens Are Unfunny, Elitist Pieces of Liberal Propaganda.” The piece went on to lambast these political segments for consisting almost entirely of “obvious applause lines” meant to reassure the “anti-Trump crowd” that all of their “knee-jerk impulses and prejudices are correct.” This is not satire. This is preaching to the choir, or, as Cheadle puts it, “spoon-feeding the audience their own spit-up.” Satire is under no obligation to mock all sides equally, and it certainly can and should take aim at particular targets. But it cannot be allowed merely to soothe its viewers into complacency. Most anti-Trump comedy exists only to remind liberals that everybody who matters already agrees with them and that anyone who doesn’t agree is crazy... This level of smugness, which bears just as much responsibility for Trump’s rise as Trump himself, is ripe for satire.||”|
Impact of COVID-19
The first 15 episodes were broadcast from Studio 8H at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, when SNL is usually broadcast live. However, after places began to shut down in March 2020, SNL began to do episodes called "Saturday Night Live At Home." These episodes featured the cast members doing pre-taped sketches at their respective homes, via video messaging. These episodes consisted of the final three episodes of the season. The first of these episodes aired on April 11, 2020, with Tom Hanks, who along with his wife Rita Wilson, were recovering from COVID-19. The musical guest was Chris Martin. The second episode, aired on April 25, 2020, with no guest host, but the musical guest was Miley Cyrus. The third episode, and Season 45 finale, aired on May 9, 2020, featuring Kristen Wiig as the host and Boyz II Men as the musical guest. During the broadcast, a graphic featuring Little Richard, who died earlier in the day, was shown in silence. When the show returned for season 46, it was back in Studio 8H.
- Beck Bennett
- Aidy Bryant
- Michael Che
- Pete Davidson
- Mikey Day
- Heidi Gardner
- Colin Jost
- Kate McKinnon
- Alex Moffat
- Kyle Mooney
- Ego Nwodim
- Chris Redd
- Cecily Strong
- Kenan Thompson
- Melissa Villaseñor
- Andrew Dismukes
- Chloe Fineman
- Lauren Holt
- Punkie Johnson
- Bowen Yang
Bold denotes Weekend Update anchor.
Notes and references
- Jodi Guglielmi (November 5, 2018). Veteran Dan Crenshaw Says Pete Davidson Shouldn't Apologize for Joke — But SNL Costar Disagrees. People.com. Retrieved on November 6, 2018.
- How Donald Trump Killed Left-Wing Political Satire by Grayson Quay, The American Conservative website