Saturday Night Live on the Betamax in the Olden Days

At a poker game, I told my friends how funny I thought last night’s Saturday Night Live was. Really? That’s something new, sneered one of them. It’s true. The show is rarely that funny and sometimes borders on simply awful. But on Saturday night, their opening with a dead-on impersonator of the President and a hilarious send up of Mitt Romney (look who I’m running against was the running gag) had us laughing out loud.

It’s nice to see that a dinosaur like this show can some times wake up and be very funny. This is the time of the year when the show is at its best, since there are new cast and they’re able to poke fun at things happening in the news right now. It’s clear that the actors spend a lot of time getting things like Obama’s pause and emphasis in his speech just right. And their Romney was pretty good too.

I have fond memories of watching the first episodes of Saturday Night Live in the late ’70s on a gigantic Betamax recording machine owned by our friend Art. We’d all go over to his house and he’d share the magic recordings of television, something none of us could do at home. Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Dan Ackroyd, John Belushi. Boy those were incredible comic actors, all captured on the big tape that we watched with rapture in the olden days.