November 7, 2015


Of course, it’s the sketches he’s not appearing in where SNL could inflict their damage — as then-writer Rosie Shuster (who was also married to the show’s producer and creator Lorne Michaels) said when Gerald Ford’s press secretary Ron Nessen appeared in the show’s first season, “The President’s watching. Let’s make him cringe and squirm.”

They did just that, as Doug Hill and Jeff Weingrad, the show’s early historians wrote in 1985. “The writers knew that Nessen would be on guard for material that was politically dangerous. Thus, they went in a different direction — ‘feinted left and went right,’ as one put it — by writing instead some of the raunchiest material ever presented on Saturday Night.”

On the other hand, Trump’s personal brand is already just a tiny bit more downmarket than Gerald Ford’s was prior to NBC savaging him on a weekly basis, so he’s probably bulletproof. The other issue he’ll have to deal with: “’Saturday Night Live’ on Heckling High-Alert for Donald Trump Appearance,” the Hollywood Reporter claims.

I wonder if Lorne is weighing the pros and cons of watching his host heckled on national TV, and Trump sending his security guards out on national TV to deal with hecklers, ala the Jorge Ramos incident. It would certainly make for great theater.

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