Friday, October 21, 2005

Same Old Story, Same Old Headline

Yesterday's New York Post has an article about how Saturday Night Live is no longer funny. Can you guess what the headline is?

Yup...."SATURDAY NIGHT DEAD."

(Link here, although you probably have to register, 'cause the Post sucks. Try BugMeNot to get a login/pass.)

I swear to you, I've read Chris Erikson's article at least three times before in the recent past. The argument (with the same damn headline) is made approximately once every three to four years.

Do I agree with him that this season of SNL has, at least so far, been unfunny? Yes. Do I agree with him that it's now time to cancel SNL? Not in the slightest. And frankly, he's an idiot for suggesting it.

SNL is a comfort zone for me. I've been a relatively constant viewer since the late '80s - I love its format, I love that there's always the old favorites and the new talents, and I love, love, LOVE "Weekend Update." Always have, with the exception of poor Colin Quinn, who is a talented comedian but sadly never learned how to read.

One of the things I love the most about SNL is that NBC has allowed it to run consistently for 31 years, through all highs and lows. Yes, the show is unfunny at times. But it always rebounds. Always. It always comes back with someone, or something, that enters the zeitgeist. (Our beloved Cowbell sketch arrived in 2000, probably just a year or so after the last "Saturday Night Dead" headline.) It's cyclical. Cast members change, writers change, and an influx of new energy often brings great comedy. And as frustrated I get when I sit through 90 minutes of an unfunny episode (usually pared down to 60, thank you TiVo), I understand that they can't all be winners. I find it a comfort to know that they're allowed to suck sometimes.

Should Lorne step down? Perhaps. I would agree with the sentiment that 31 years is a long time to be running the same show, and perhaps some new energy is what's needed. But canceling SNL would be a mistake.

Required reading: Live From New York. It's a fascinating account from many cast members, writers and guests on everything from the show's inception to its day-to-day moments. It's amazing what a god-like figure Lorne is to all of them. I couldn't put it down.

1 Comments:

At 10/21/2005 11:10 AM, Blogger Brian said...

a good friend of mine was on the production from Not Ready For Prime Time Players all the way up until Phil Hartman. She's always had interesting stories about the casts and differences working with them all.

For me that's about when I stopped watching it... around the Phil Hartman time... I turn it on occassionally, but eh, it's boring, trite, and not worth my precious free time for maybe a laugh or a chuckle.

what irks me more than anything is the fact that Lorne Micheals productions spits out just enough winners to spawn a multitude of losers in the LMP movie tie ins.

 

Post a Comment

<< Home