We asked staffers to share their favorite “Saturday Night Live” sketches ahead of Sunday’s 40th anniversary special.
So, for your Friday laughs, here goes. (Click here for a photo gallery of the show through the years).
Chris Farley gave new meaning to the word shameless, which is why I loved him so much. His portrayals of the Chippendale’s dancer, motivational speaker Matt Foley and Cindy, the Gap Girl, were hilarious, uncomfortable and sad all at once. His physicality and willingness to be the most foolish of fools seemed to offer a glimpse of how the troubled Farley likely saw himself, and it wasn’t pretty.
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Phil Hartman’s comedic talent was illustrated in his dead-on impersonations of Bill Clinton. The one where he stops at a McDonald’s while jogging with secret service agents and stuffs copious amounts of food into his mouth while staying in perfect Clinton character — twang and all — is a comedic feat with no parallel.
— Cynthia Billhartz Gregorian
One of my favorite SNL clips is “Debbie Downer: Happiest Place on Earth?” It’s not unusual to see Jimmy Fallon break character, but no one could keep a straight face in this sketch. Toward the end, Horatio Sanz is laughing so hard he wipes his face with a pancake. It doesn’t get much better than that.
— Melissa Schupmann
When Sarah Palin was introduced as John McCain’s vice presidential running mate in the 2008 elections, I thought: She looks just like Tina Fey.
The two women share an uncanny resemblance, and Tina rose to the challenge. There are so many good lines from this sketch, with Tina as Sarah and Amy Poehler as Hillary Clinton, including: “I can see Russia from my house”; “Tina Fey glasses” and “grow a pair.” It was an equal opportunity skewering of both politicians.
— Kathy Lu
Features writer Edward M. Eveld only had this to say about “Back Home Ballers”: Genius ... “bowls, bowls, all types of bowls.”
Finally, these classics are classics for a reason.
Eddie Murphy in a mockumentary titled “White Like Me,” in which he read “a whole bunch of Hallmark cards” to prepare for going underground as a white person.
Bill Hader’s about-town guide Stefon, who can never keep his composure.
And Alec Baldwin as Pete Schweddy talking about his holiday balls on a guest NPR spot.