SNL's political skits

SNL is getting some heat for their digs at the GOP side. But there is no mention of the long skit that parodied the media’s treatment of Palin - portraying them as treating her very unfairly and being out of touch with anything other than Manhattan. The McCain skit getting particular note as Al Franken apparently contributed some to it.

So …

Does a comedy show (no digs needed about whether or not they are still funny enough to be called comedy) need to be “up the middle”?

Was SNL up the middle with two political skits one friendly to the GOP ticket and one not?

Is it too much bias to take ideas from an alum who is running for a different office than one directly involved in the skit?

My take: comedy shows can be as biased as they want to be but this episode is notably even handed. And while it would be notable if they were making fun of Norm Coleman, taking ideas about the Presidential race is fair for Franken to add to.

The only difference is that the McCain skit was near the beginning of the show and focused on him, while the Press-Palin skit was IIRC correctly after Weekend Update, which may be a down-time for viewership.

Or maybe the critics didn’t see that skit because they were being chased by snow machines… driven by polar bears.

It’s humor I don’t think they need to be “fair” go with funny! I thought both skits had some nice humor in them. It’s not a news program and even that I don’t rightly care if FoxNews changed to RepublicanBlowJob channel I would still click on it on occasion. If MSNBC changed to OlbermannBlowsDems I would still watch them as well. Personally I think most bias you “find” on the news is based on your own bias. Or something like that.

As a Republican I thought Tina Fey was hilarious with her impression of Sarah Palin. Sometimes you just have to laugh.

I was disturbed by the mention of incest in the Alaska sketch. Other than that it was hysterical.

SNL is free to be up the middle or skewed either way. It behooves them to be fair, I’d say, so they don’t have the taint of favoritism. Bill Maher made this mistake I think. The problem with using a skit from Franken is a problem for Franken as he is running for political office. I don’t think it helps him trying to shuck his comedy hat and replace it with that of statesman. I think this probably hurts him with those in the middle, while those who were already going to vote for him will lap it up.

I thought it was fair that they made fun of the Media’s ignorance of firearms.

And I think Darryl Hammond totally captured John McCain.

“Is that true?” “Wellll…bullshit explanation” “Good enough for me! I’m John McCain and I approved this message.”

Eh, when they ripped on Obama, the Faithful complained about it, so you know they’re doing something right. They take on all comers. I think having Franken participate was bad form, though.

Still funny.

It’s a comedy show. They can lampoon whomever they like. They have no duty to be “fair” or give even attention to both sides. If they think there is more material to use parodying conservatives so be it.

Their only concern is their viewership and chances are their viewers are likely to lean towards younger and more liberal. At the end of the day it is about ratings for them and nothing more so they will write their skits with that in mind.

There are plenty of conservative shows and while not necessarily “comedy” no one has issue with (say) Rush Limbaugh doing his overtly conservative show. Why should SNL have steer a middle course?

I agree. How about if they let Norm Coleman write a sketch next week?

Really, though, I appreciate how the Equal Time rules can keep some candidates from being overexposed. For instance, in 1980 and 1984 we didn’t have to watch any Ronald Reagan movies.

Eh, Franken’s participation in the sketch was minimal.
It amounted to him having a conversation with Lorne Michaels over the phone saying how he thought the whole “I approve this message” part of campaigning was sillly. It sparked the idea for Lorne to create a skit out of it and he had his writers create one. That was the extent of Frankens involvement.

Al Franken has been writing on-and-off for SNL since the show started. Having him participate is merely him doing his job.

For those of us too old to stay up late, is there any link to the skit(s) available?

Oh, now I can appreciate that his involvement was minimal, but this is stretching. His job most certainly is not writing for SNL right now.

Palin and Clinton

Other SNL skits

And here’s the McCain skit:

He didn’t write the sketch. He didn’t even suggest it.


Franken had nothing to do with the sketch. This whole new meme that Franke “wrote” the sketch (or had any involvement at all) is a result of one of Matt Drudge’s typically misleading headlines.
He’s got another one right now that says “‘SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE’ skit suggests Sarah’s husband guilty of incest…” Another complete distortion since that sketch was about mocking liberal, New York reporters.

You’re just afraid Norm Coleman’s sketch will be funnier. :wink:

SNL has devoted much airtime blasting on the Clintons. some of these latest skits may be a bit more mean spirited, but really, who gives a shit? I watch that show to see if they can make me smile. If I laugh, I consider it a success.

Once politicians stop appearing on the show as themselves, thereby giving their defacto approval of other skits about them, maybe I’ll be concerned about hurt feelings on either side.