September 21, 2008

Al Franken helped write last night's opening "SNL" skit, bashing McCain.

Quite good!

IN THE COMMENTS: Fen said:
"Hi. I'm NBC and I approved this ad."

61 comments:

Fred4Pres said...

I thought it was terrible.

It was also not funny (and while I support McCain, I would not have laughed if it were flipped on Obama--which given his recent whopper ads is even more justified). At a minimum they should have had a split screen showing Team Obama engaging in the same behavior.

Al Franken is running for office. He should not be creating hit pieces against the opponent party on SNL. I have a problem with that. I would even have a problem if Dennis Miller came back wrote hit pieces on Obama--but at least Miller is not running for office now!

The Drill SGT said...

just another example of how NBC favors the Dems

The Drill SGT said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
eaglewingz08 said...

Maybe Al should have included his middle name Olberman with the credits (or discredit) of this 'fluff'. Gee, McCain's old, that's really funny, should get those senior voters representing 25 percent of the electorate rolling in the aisles.
And George Washington had wooden teeth, I'm sure Alberman would have had a field day with George the First.

chickenlittle said...

SNL has enjoyed significant bump in Neilsen ratings lately. Too bad the NYT can work more comedy into their work.

William said...

In most melodramas they cast the villain as a WASP. This isn't because WASPs are particularly villainous. It is because they are not. No one takes exception to a villainous WASP..... Something similar seems to be going on with McCain. The amount of ridicule he has attracted signifies that people have a comfort level with him. No one makes fun of Obama's middle name, hesitant speech, big ears, pastor problems, etc. This does not mean that Obama is unworthy of ridicule. It means that people feel uncomfortable ridiculing him.....In the long run, more people will vote for a man they can kid than for someone they feel they have to be polite to.

Beth said...

It seems like only yesterday that conservatives on this site were crowing that liberals don't have a sense of humor.

Leave McCain aloooone! That's not funny!

Glen said...

Darryl Hammond's McCain is pathetic. I saw flickers of his old Clinton and Cheney impersonations but nothing that was essentially McCain.

That guy in the first Lisa Nova Video is miles above Hammond.

Fred4Pres is right. Better to have taken a "With a name like Fluckers, you know it's got to be good" approach.

Darin said...

Caught it this morning somewhere, it was sad. I usually laugh at Jay Leno's McCain jokes (sure he misses sometimes, but he hits more often than not), however, this was pathetic. I can't believe this was an opening skit either, those are usually the best.

Who would have thought that Norm Coleman was the funnier candidate?

John Stodder said...

It was about 25 percent as funny as the Tina Fey/Palin sketch, which is already a classic.

It was a funny idea that, like most SNL skits, dragged on long after the point was made and the joke was clear. Maybe that's the Franken comedy template: Punchline early and fill fill fill and hope the actors are funny. In this case, not so much.

EDH said...

Pretty much a you can "insert any candidates' name here" skit with respect to negative ads, wasn't it?

I didn't see the show, but I have read there was a skit about the NYT and attacks on Palin. If so, likely SNL justified its poke at McCain against its defense of Palin.

Did anyone see this?

DESCRIPTION of Palin skit: NYT Reporters sought to probe the possibility Palin's husband was having sex with the couple's own daughters. "What about the husband?" asked a Times reporter during a mock assignment meeting for the paper. "You know he's doing those daughters. I mean, come on. It's Alaska." The assignment editor for the Times, portrayed by actor James Franco, responded: "He very well could be. Admittedly, there is no evidence of that, but on the other hand, there is no convincing evidence to the contrary. And these are just some of the lingering questions about Governor Palin."

chuck b. said...

I thought it was funny. "Universal healthcare? For the whole universe?"

Fen said...

"Hi. I'm NBC and I approved this ad"

Fen said...

Beth: It seems like only yesterday that conservatives on this site were crowing that liberals don't have a sense of humor.

Its not a matter of whether the skit was funny, Beth, its that we're so weary of being proselytized by entertainment media. Think about it: if every play/movie/sitcom/song you enjoyed tried to convert you to Christianity, you'd be weary of it too.

West Wing is a perfect example - excellent dialog and storyline, but only if you routinely ignore all the strawman arguments and cheap shots directed at conservatives and Republicans.

I also don't have much respect for our "edgy" artist/bards who Speak Truth To Power... Except For Islam.

Glen said...

Fen said:
"Hi. I'm NBC and I approved this ad"

It's official. You win!

garage mahal said...

Beth, its that we're so weary of being proselytized by entertainment media.

Awwwww.

jdeeripper said...

William said...In most melodramas they cast the villain as a WASP. This isn't because WASPs are particularly villainous. It is because they are not. No one takes exception to a villainous WASP..... Something similar seems to be going on with McCain. The amount of ridicule he has attracted signifies that people have a comfort level with him.

No. It's not comfort it's contempt. Ever watch McCain on the Daily Show? The creepy little tiny guy Jon Stewart abuses and disrespects McCain every time he's on.

It's in part because McCain is small and nonthreatening despite the reputation for temper.

Can you imagine people treating big old Fred Thompson with this kind of personal disrespect? Of course not because he's a big scary looking Southern man who intimidates them. They might not like him but they wont be as confidently disrespectful.

Most people are gutless wimps. They are strong before the weak and wimps before the strong.

Plus, McCain has the weakness of seeming to want approval from people. When people sense you want to be their friend they can perceive that as a sign of weakness.

David Letterman was an example of a guy who intimidated people because he seemed like he had no desire to get people to like him.

No one makes fun of Obama's middle name, hesitant speech, big ears, pastor problems, etc. This does not mean that Obama is unworthy of ridicule. It means that people feel uncomfortable ridiculing him.....

First of all this is mostly a Christian country and you aren't supposed to ridicule Jesus or Jesus 2.0.

Second of all, please, he's BLACK. Where have you been? Do we really have to get into the details?

In the long run, more people will vote for a man they can kid than for someone they feel they have to be polite to.

No. If the level of respect drops below a certain line and the person is stereotyped as someone pathetic, contemptuous or clueless they are less likely to get a vote of support.

Fen said..."Hi. I'm NBC and I approved this ad"

NBC = National Barack Channel.

Beth said...

Can you imagine people treating big old Fred Thompson with this kind of personal disrespect?

That big old drama queen? F#&* her!

Peter Blogdanovich said...

One of his best 70's bits was Franken in editorial mode on camera reviewing a bunch of current events, then he puts the copy down and looking into the camera, says,"I know what you're thinking...You're thinking "How does any of this affect me-Al Franken?""
The laughs flow from the preposterous level of self absorption revealed in the skit. Of course, you can push any joke too far.

Masterasia said...

This is a democracy, its just alright.

McCain said that he thought it would be great if he injected some humor in the 2008 campaign when he released the "Obama is a celebrity ad."

Are the Republicans the whiners this time around? LOL.

Just look at the reversal at the polls, it looks like Obama is going to win after all. >:D

Host with the Most said...

Quite good?

Where's the skit about that Mother-Fucking Lying Obama?

Fuck NBC

and while you're at it, Fuck Jon Stewart.


As to who Ann is going to vote for?

Let's see,

Among Ann's most recent posts were about:
1) Gay albums

2) Pro-Obama posts on his attitude toward Black homophobia and seniors

3) An anti-Romney/Mormon post

4) A pro-Ariana Huffington post - is there a more tiresome intellectuial cunt in the world than Arianna? - that was also anti-Palin.

The math is done, and it stinks like. . .

Obama!

garage mahal said...

Whaaaa!

vbspurs said...

I didn't think it was bad either.

I had posted on a thread that Franken was going to write a skit, and when it was over, I told my boyfriend that it wasn't the hit job I anticipated.

I'll go further.

Legendary SNL producer, Lorne Michaels, who donates to the Republican Party, could've gone after Palin again, allowing Tina Fey to reprise her role, but it didn't happen (well, I tuned off after the Weekend Update report, which was hilarious this time).

For NBC, I thought they could've gone for the jugular this week and they didn't. That's as "neutral" as one can expect for them.

Cheers,
Victoria

Masterasia said...

@"Host with the most"

Well Arianna and her friends get things done to say the least.

The only thing I didn't like about her blog site are the anti-Palin posts.

But at the end of the day, it is still primarily an Obama-McCain contest. Gov. Palin and Sen. Biden are just side dishes.

Ann Althouse said...

Host! That was pro-Arianna? And anti-Romney? And what does gay have to do with anything? Don't you know Obama and McCain cutely snuggle together for the gay folks?

vbspurs said...

Don't you know Obama and McCain cutely snuggle together for the gay folks?

Obama totally has the Tracy Chapman CD. McCain I see as a big David Bowie fan.

Cindy McCain is crazy about Cream. Never misses a concert. She's pretty straight.

Chip Ahoy said...

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

* slaps knee *

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

* deepens voice *

"That's-the-FUNn-i-est-thing-I've-heard-all-daaay."

Chip Ahoy said...

I'm Chip Ahoy and I approve that ^^^ message.

jdeeripper said...

Beth said...Can you imagine people treating big old Fred Thompson with this kind of personal disrespect?

That big old drama queen? F#&* her!


But you wouldn't say it to his face, school teacher.

Plus Fred has a magic effect of women's hormones.

If you met him in person you'd probably become a raging heterosexual.

Fred Thompson is just that powerful. At least when he's not lounging around with the metabolism of a tree sloth.

Beth said...

Oh, you have such a vivid imagination, jdee. He's an actor, a lobbyist, and a big old goober. I have no problem saying so to his face. He'd have no problem hearing it. He knows he's playing a role.

Beth said...

Ah, and a sloth -- thanks! I missed that one on the list. I should add "senator" but that would be redundant.

Palladian said...

"Whaaaa!"

Garage, you've got the whine down pat! But that's understandable since you certainly got a lot of practice doing it when you were defending that pants-suited twat from that big mean ol' Barack and his mean ol' followers.

Too bad you failed! Whaaaa!

the wolf said...

Beth, you've missed the point of the conservative complaint. Dems have no sense of humor when being needled themselves. Able to dish it out but not take it.

At one time SNL considered itself outside the mainstream and everyone was a target. Now they're just (yet another) PR arm of the Democratic Party.

Chus said...

http://mostpopularinusa.blogspot.com

Chus said...

http://mostpopularinusa.blogspot.com

knox said...

If "whining" is going to be a topic, then I'm going to have to mention the "Fairness Doctrine" ... the democrats can't even tolerate conservatives having lame old AM talk radios.

And garage, need I remind you that your favorite lady suffered at the hands of the Obama-infatuated media? You did a lot of whining about that if I remember correctly.

And incidentally, she herself whined about FoxNews plenty, until she was too utterly desperate and sold out... as did Obama recently. Up until then, all your guys were too scared even to have their debate on Fox.

Plenty of whining to go around.

knox said...

I'll admit I'm biased, but I watched that skit and there was a heck of a lot of silence. Not too funny, even for a friendly crowd. It didn't even get any courtesy clapplause.

Melinda said...

The sketch about The New York Times was actually poking fun at the elitism of The New York Times. The joke was that the reporters were so out of touch with regular people and so hell-bent on finding dirt on Palin that they identified a snow machine as a crucifix.

Also, that they'd never been out of Manhattan or Beverly Hills except for one guy who fell asleep on the E train once and ended up in Queens.

garage mahal said...

Garage, you've got the whine down pat! But that's understandable since you certainly got a lot of practice doing it when you were defending that pants-suited twat from that big mean ol' Barack and his mean ol' followers.

Too bad you failed! Whaaaa!


Whine? Moi? I don't ever recall crying like a baby with a full diaper at a SNL skit. Do what Hillary did - show your sense of humor and go on the show. The only failure will be letting Cranky/Skanky '08 within a mile of the White House, and it's looking more and more like that will not happen.

Shanna said...

I tried to watch this skit and got bored about a minute in (actually, half a minute and then I tried to stick it out). The universe thing was mildly humorous, but I just couldn't watch the whole thing.

Part of this I'm sure is because humor is supposed to be based on truth, and if you don't start with the belief that McCain ads have be lies or gross exagerations you aren't going to see truth...so no humor.

daredevil-66 said...

Its kind of touching in a way to see SNL suddenly become "relevant" again as far as political humor goes. Jon Stewart & Steve Colbert are much funnier and have owned that genre for the last 6 years. The sketch reminds me a lot of most Jack Black movies. I really want to laugh..but...eh er... its a funny concept.

section9 said...

The only failure will be letting Cranky/Skanky '08 within a mile of the White House, and it's looking more and more like that will not be happening.

It's a Democratic year, and McCain and Palin are within two points against a ticket that should be ten points up on them. It's not even October yet, and Palin drew 70,000 people in Florida today.

The problem with the Democratic ticket is that average voters, not primary voters, get to vote. Obama should have put this game away already. He hasn't.

Palin has added more strength to the ticket than most liberal ideologues are unwilling to admit. Liberals scream about this because they aren't willing to suspend their disbelief about Palin's natural strengths as a politician, which surpass Obama's. You will find, as this election goes forward, that the average voter will find her a much more trustworthy figure than Obama. McCain is trusted already, so he doesn't even have these issues.

Elections are, in the end, about who the voters trust the most. Obama's dilemma is that the longer the election continues, the greater his bollocks quotient goes up. The propaganda drumbeat from the MSM and his outriders in the Entertainment Media is extremely loud, but there is even some disquiet among his own partisans.

In the end, McCain's strength of character will trump Obama's lack of it, and you and other liberals will wake up the morning after the election in defeat: having sent another flawed nominee to the limbo of Kerryland. I did not think this was possible even in July. I was convinced that John McCain ran an incompetent campaign that was bound to lose. However, he has since righted his ship, found his message and his running mate, and connected with voters. This is not a sure thing. McCain could lose. But I like his position right now much better than I like Obama's. To me, this looks much more like a 51-49 McCain win and an electoral eke. Same as 2004.

BJK said...

The problem that I have with the sketch (which was mostly harmless, to be honest) isn't that Franken wrote it; it's that Franken was able to tell everyone that he wrote it.

Al Franken is running for office in Minnesota, and taking on an incumbent. In order to win, he needs a large turnout and energy level from Minnesota Democrats. To the extent that he can use his connections to help accomplish that, it is worrisome.

The prospect of him doing something poignant (especially as NBC is pushing SNL into prime time with election-based sketches) is more worrisome than last night's open.

Beth said...

Beth, you've missed the point of the conservative complaint.

No, I got it. Conservatives have a sense of humor until a joke is directed at them or their heroes.

Mark Daniels said...

The skit wasn't funny. If he wins in Minnesota, Franken can claim it as his 'The Killers.' If he loses, he obviously can go back to work for Lorne Michaels.

Shanna said...

Conservatives have a sense of humor until a joke is directed at them or their heroes.

I thought a lot of the Palin "i can see russia from my house" stuff was funny, but it does get tiresome when everything is directed at you and your opponents are deemed to "not have anything funny about them" or whatever they said about Obama. I mean, come on!

This joke suffered from being the same thing, for way too long. Which is part of the reason SNL hasn't really been funny in ages.

Sencho said...

Beth: "No, I got it. Conservatives have a sense of humor until a joke is directed at them or their heroes."

Has nothing to do with target, it has everything to do with lack of humor. Take Franken for example, the only funny thing about him is him not understanding that he is the joke. Not the joker.

Which is why angry, hate-filled people like Franken are called 'satirists' and not comedians.

JBlog said...

That's the fundamental problem with comics when they cross the line into outright shrieking demagoguery -- they just stop being funny.

Which is the biggest sin a comic can commit.

As to Mr. Franken, I'd suggest focus on his on Senate race -- the WSJ reports today that the late entry of independent Dean Barkley is shaking things up and may result in an upset.

rjschwarz said...

The skit wasn't bad. It easily could have been done with Obama or McCain. They could have made it really funny to cap it with Obama coming into the studio at the end and seeing a totally different reaction towards him. Even the identical reaction could have been funny.

Mil-Tech Bard said...

You don’t attack underage children of politicians in a political campaign. That is over the line and beyond the pale.

The writers of the Saturday Night Live "Palin Family Incest" skit could easily have used infidelity rumors aimed at Gov. Palin and her husband Todd as a back drop for the NY Times slam.

Instead they went out of their way to drag in under age female innocents with the writing help of a Democratic candidate for Minnesota’s Federal Senate seat, AL Frankin.

For SNL to bring up and “culturally legitimize” for public discussion the subject of incest between Todd Palin and his daughters Bristol, Willow, and Piper is to subject them to endless questions from their peers and reporters for the rest of their lives about their relationship with their father.

In Bristol’s case the parentage of her child will be called into question, *again*.

To those who think this won't happen, please see jokes about Justice Clarence Thomas and Coke cans, Har, Har Har...

To subject innocents to that kind of long term, unnecessary, verbal assault “for a laugh” is Evil. To do so for political gain and power...is more than just Evil.

That the SNL writers chose to do so demonstrates that they have a hole where their souls should be. An aching hole that they have to fill with other people’s pain, just to feel alive.

Rocker 419 said...

Ok, heres a skit for SNL: A doctor walks into his office and it's Barak Obama! The doctor says "Barak, you gotta stop masterbating so much!" Barak asks why? "So I can examine you!" I'm John McCain and I approve this message.

Mister Snitch! said...

"Conservatives have a sense of humor until a joke is directed at them or their heroes."

Unlike the liberals, who LOVE being mocked. Why I remember...

Uh, actually, I've never heard a liberal be self-deprecating. I've heard some carefully-calculated prose designed to approximate humility, but there's no getting past the egos.

Witness this post, where they just keep coming back, beyond all reason, to condescend to every single unflattering remark that pops up.

DADvocate said...

Not funny. The jokes were old and tired. The digital=fingers and universal=universe stuff is decades old. Al Franken quit being funny years ago, which is why he doesn't have a real job anymore.

MadisonMan said...

Went too long.

Fatmouse said...

"Unlike the liberals, who LOVE being mocked. Why I remember..."

I can think of two examples:

1. When someone needs to be thrown under the bus. After Obama became the Chosen One, Hillary was subjected to hateful "jokes" that would make feminists riot were a Republican to say them.

2. When it's actually a compliment. Sitcoms like to call Bush a retarded monkey cowboy, but then claim they're "even handed" by throwing a joke in about how Bill Clinton likes sex. But look at the subtext: Bush is a retarded monkey cowboy, Clinton is a stud who gets tons of chicks.

bjm said...

Rocker that's about as funny as Franken's SNL sketch, not.

Franken's sketch was just lame, and like the Palin sketch went for the obvious; which is akin to pratfall humor.

As in a pratfall when the protagonist is visibly injured most folks shift uncomfortably in their seats and feel badly for laughing at crudely formed cheap shots.

SNL has become an echo chamber of lib conventional wisdom and leftist cause du jour so it has zero impact outside the intellectual clique which they inhabit.

I thought SNL really lost an opportunity with Palin to create what was once their trademark; a savvy political caricature.

It's a pity as SNL's material was once irreverent, smart AND funny, now? Not so much.

James said...

SNL make fun of Erkel?
Never.

That would be....

wait for it...


Racist.

OldGrouchy said...

Good old Beth, fairly unbalanced as usual; not even close to being factual. Your put down of Fred Thompson was typical of your kind. Have you been studying under Sarah Bernhard recently, or was it that former Playboy Bunny?

Enjoy your stay at Bellevue Hospital. Will they allow you to have visitors?

Revenant said...

It seems like only yesterday that conservatives on this site were crowing that liberals don't have a sense of humor.

I do have a sense of humor. That's why I quit watching Saturday Night Live twenty years ago. :)

Fen said...

"Beth, you've missed the point of the conservative complaint."

Beth: No, I got it. Conservatives have a sense of humor until a joke is directed at them or their heroes

No Beth, you're being willfully obtuse. I tend to laugh at jokes directed at conservatives AND liberals, as opposed to conservatives ALWAYS being the butt of the joke. One is good-spirited humor made in good faith, the other is mere propaganda.

Cincinnatus said...

Eight Traks, har har!

Al Franken "phones it in" when he could have hashed it out on his laptop. He has a laptop, right?

John McCain's 2000 campaign was a lot more savvy then that.