September 29th, 2001
Mayor Rudolph Guiliani
9/11 TributeSummary: New York Mayor Rudolph Guiliani pays tribute to the lives lost on September 11th by acknowledging the members of the New York Fire and Police Department as heroes. Paul Simon sings “The Boxer.”
Note: The World Trade Center attacks took place eighteen days before the season premiere. Though there was a consideration to delay the season premiere, Lorne Michaels finally decided to proceed as planned when Mayor Guiliani stated that he wanted the show to go on.
Note: Along with Art Garfunkel, Paul Simon also performed “The Boxer” on SNL’s second episode on October 18th, 1975.
MontageNote: Kevin Spacey was this episode’s first choice for host, but scheduling conflicts prevented him from accepting.
Note: Don Pardo announces Ana Gasteyer’s name while Tina Fey’s picture is on the screen.
Reese Witherspoon’s MonologueSummary: Reese Witherspoon cuts the tension by telling an off-color joke about a polar bear cub.
Note: The original punchline to the joke Reese Witherspoon tells was “I’m fucking freezing!” Lorne Michaels prompted her to say the line, promising that he would pay the FCC indecency fine just so he could prove to viewers that New York City was back up and running, but Witherspoon declined just before the live show because she knew her younger fans would be watching.
Preparation HSummary: A group of skateboarding teenagers are proud users of the H ointment.
Wake Up, WakefieldSummary: Megan (Maya Rudolph) introduces the new viewer window, then interviews Randy Goldman’s (Jimmy Fallon) girlfriend and Spanish Club President, Gretchen Doyle (Reese Witherspoon).
Recurring Characters: Megan, Sheldon, Mr. Banglian, Randy Goldman.
The Little MermaidSummary: The Little Mermaid (Reese Witherspoon) grosses out a sailor (Will Ferrell) with songs about her fish genitalia.
Alicia Keys performs “Fallin'”
Weekend Update with Jimmy Fallon & Tina FeySummary: Jesse Jackson (Darrell Hammond) explains how the Taliban called him right after 9/11.
Recurring Characters: Jesse Jackson.
The CulpsSummary: Marty Culp (Will Ferrell) and Bobbi Mohan-Culp (Ana Gasteyer) perform a medley for their niece’s lesbian wedding.
Recurring Characters: Marty Culp, Bobbie Mohan-Culp.
Celebrity JeopardySummary: Sean Connery (Darrell Hammond) competes against Anne Heche (Witherspoon) and Chris Tucker (Dean Edwards).
Recurring Characters: Alex Trebek, Sean Connery, Anne Heche.
Alicia Keys performs “A Woman’s Worth”
Farting BabySummary: A baby’s outrageous flatulence problem is the least of this sketch’s worries.
Donatella Versace For the ChildrenSummary: Donatella Versace (Maya Rudolph) releases a terrible children’s album.
Recurring Characters: Donatella Versace, Karl Lagerfeld.
Dress Rehearsal Cuts
The How Do You Say? Ah Yes, ShowSummary: Antonio Banderas (Chris Kattan) tries to use his wily charms on Paula Zahn (Reese Witherspoon).
Recurring Characters: Antonio Banderas, Senor Guadalupe Ramirez, Paula Zahn.
Note: This sketch airs on next week’s show, with cast member Amy Poehler assuming the role of Paula Zahn.