By Megan Smedley
The stage was set in studio 8H of Rockefeller Plaza. This was no ordinary taping of “Saturday Night Live.” For starters, it was a Sunday night but also the audience was a star-studded who’s who event with the biggest names in comedy, music, sports, and politics. Lorne Michaels relaxed in his chair as the show began.
Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake kicked things off rapping a monologue that included the show’s biggest moments. From “Mr. Bill” to “more cowbell,” “dick in a box” to Mary Katherine Gallagher, the show was highlighted in a mere five minutes. Yet this was just the beginning.
Will Ferrell impression of Alex Trebek shined in the latest installment of Celebrity Jeopardy. Ferrell clashed with the ever-inappropriate Sean Connery portrayed by Darrell Hammond throughout the sketch.
“The Californians” were back filled with even more drama including a passionate kiss between Betty White and Bradley Cooper. Weekend Update showed girl power with former anchors Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and Jane Curtin dishing jokes behind the desk. The reunion satisfied fans stretching multiple generations.
Meredith Good, a freshman enrolled in Letters and Sciences, said, “The intro was my favorite part with Justin and Jimmy. They were hilarious. Some skits I didn’t know because they were out of my time. Overall I thought it was an interesting culmination of everything.”
Many fans expected Eddie Murphy to be involved in a sketch or do a monologue instead Murphy said kind words about his experience on the show.
“Saturday Night Live” debuted October 11, 1975, and became an instant hit. Live sketch comedy helped SNL become the most sought after show for any comedian. Creator Lorne Michaels still runs the audition process and has final say of which skits make it to air.
The show features recurring characters, impressions and political skits. SNL has introduced the world to some of the best comedians. Previous cast members include, Dan Aykroyd, Jim Belushi, Jane Curtin, Chris Rock, Maya Rudolph, Jason Sudeikis, Adam Sandler, and Andy Samberg just to name a few.
In recent year some believe the show has struggled. “I feel like once Tina Fey left as a writer it kind of went downhill,” said junior neurobiology major Jess Ubogiy.
There was the thought of how could SNL possibly remain on air, but Lorne Michaels knew comedy could help people through it. With 40 years under its belt, it is clear that “Saturday Night Live” is not going anywhere.