SNL Transcripts: Fran Tarkenton: 01/29/77: Grand Stand


 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 2: Episode 13

76m: Fran Tarkenton / Leo Sayer, Donny Harper Singers

Grand Stand

Bryant Gumbo…..Garrett Morris
Lee Whitehead…..Bill Murray
…..Fran Tarketon
Conductor…..Howard Shore

[ open on “Grand Stand” logo ] [ pan out to reveal Lee Whitehead and Bryant Gumbo seated at the sportsdesk ]

Lee Whitehead: Well, it’s, uh — it’s certainly been an exciting first half of comedy, here in the RCA Building. Hello, I’m Lee Whitehead.

Bryant Gumbo: And I’m Bryant Gumbo. We’ll have some of the first half highlights with Fran Tarkenton, after this message.

[ dissolve to repeat of “Wrigley’s Gum” ad parody from Season 1 ]

Bryant Gumbo: Hello, welcome back to “Grand Stand”. We’re talking with Fran Tarkenton, host for “Saturday Night”.

Lee Whitehead: Fran, uh, you had a pretty good first half — you completed 11 out of 16 jokes, for a total of 97 laughs. Now, uh, some of the jokes have been pretty hard-hitting — do you think this is a dirty show? [ no response from Tarkenton ] Well, it appears that, uh, Fran cannot hear us. We’ll have that interview in just a few moments. But, first — let’s take a look at the “Saturday Night” blimp, uh, which is now above the studio.

[ cut to a close-up of the blimp above the audience, pan out for long shot ]

Lee Whitehead V/O: And, uh, the blimp, of course, is just a small part of the amazing technological hook-ups which bring us “Saturday Night Live.”

[ return to Lee and Bryant at the desk ]

Bryant Gumbo: Uh, excuse me — excuse me, Lee, I think Fran can hear us now. Is that correct, Fran?

Lee Whitehead: Uh, we’ve got Fran here. Hello, Fran? Fran? [ Tarkenton just grins like an idiot, unable to hear either of the sports anchors ] Well, I guess we’re not ready yet for that interview with Fran Tarkenton.

Bryant Gumbo: Yeah, yeah. And while we wait, uh, let’s look at some highlights from a show that is already in progress on ABC. Their late night movie is “That’s Entertainment, Part 10”. Uh, it has an exciting scene from “EVery Man’s House”.

[ cut to black-and-white film footage, with SUPER: “In Progress On ABC” ] [ a man sings “It’s… A… Big… Wide… Wonderful World…” to a bird in his hand, while his wife brings coffee and they sit at the table ] [ return to Lee and Bryant at the desk ]

Lee Whitehead: And, of course, we’ll be keeping you posted on the development in that show. Uh, I understand that, uh, FRan can hear us now. So, Fran, is that right? Can you hear us? Hello, buddy. [ no response from Tarkenton, who just smiles dumbly on the monitor ] Well… so, uh, Fran can’t hear us! So, let’s take it down to the floor — Howard Shore and his band, for some of that Half Time pageantry!

[ cut to a marching band playing on the field, as the Conductor steps forward and climbs a ladder before them ]

Announcer: And now, the White Plains Marching Band… saluting blind, non-white American composers! To begin our tribute, the band will perform… “You Are the Sunshine of My Life… while forming a pair of giant sunglasses in the c of the field.

[ the band stumbles about in an effort to form the shape ] [ return to Lee and Bryant at the desk, in mid-interview ]

Lee Whitehead: — a hard-hitting show. Do you think this is a dirty show, Fran?

Fran Tarkenton: Uh, no, I don’t think so. I — I think it’s good, clean comedy. You know, no one’s taking any cheap shots out there, except, maybe, that Stevie Wonder joke we just heard.

Bryant Gumbo: I — I hope Stevie’s not hurt, speaking of cheap shots. Uh, when Don Meredith announced during the Superbowl that you were going to host “Saturday Night” — you know? — he said you were going a long way with no talent. Uh, what do you think about that?

Fran Tarkenton: Uh, well, Lee — [ he laughs ], I’m not a vicious kind of guy, but, you know, there are three quarterbacks in the NFL who are gay, and… when Don was playing, there were four!

Bryant Gumbo: Okay, Fran, uh — [ he coughs ] Let’s take a look at some highlights from, uh, the first half.

[ show slow-motion footage from the Monologue ]

Bryan Gumbo V/O: Now, uh, this was early on in the show, and I think it was your first big laugh.

Fran Tarkenton V/O: Yes, I-I’d say this was definitely the turning point of the first quarter. John Belushi, he set me up just beautifully, and I went in for the laugh untouched.

Bryan Gumbo V/O: Yeah, uh —

Lee Whitehead V/O: Now, why don’t you tell us what’s happening in this scene, here —

[ show slow-motion footage from the Steroids ad parody ]

Lee Whitehead V/O: Right here.

Fran Tarkenton V/O: Well, now, I’m getting the time to get my jokes off, and I-I’m connecting with the audience, and I hope to do a lot more of that before the show’s over.

Lee Whitehead V/O: Terrific steroid bit, if I must say so. You look pretty good here, uh, no question about it. This next piece of tape we’re gonna see here, uh —

[ show slow-motion footage from the Hotel sketch ]

Lee Whitehead V/O: Oh, yeah, you look REAL good here! Now, you want to tell us what kind of condition you have to be in to pull this one off?

Fran Tarkenton V/O: Well, yeah, I think condition’s a big factor, and that’s why the show is so funny tonight. [ he chuckles heartily ] [ return to Lee and Bryant at the desk ]

Well, thank you, Fran, and that’s all the highlights. And we hope you’ll continue to be funny for us in the second half, or else — [ he mimes cutting his throat ]

Fran Tarkenton: Well, thank you, Lee and Bryant, and, uh —

Bryant Gumbo: Yeah, and, uh, thanks — that’s “Grand Stand”. Thank you, Lee, for anchoring.

Lee Whitehead: Thank you, Bryant, for providing the color!

[ they all augh uproariously at the joke ] [ the credits begin to scroll ]

Announcer: The preceding broadcast is the property of the National Comedy League. Any reproduction or rebroadcast, without the expressed written consent of the NLC, is strictly prohibited by common sense.

[ fade ]

SNL Transcripts

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Author: Don Roy King

Don Roy King has directed fourteen seasons of Saturday Night Live. That work has earned him ten Emmys and fourteen nominations. Additionally, he has been nominated for fifteen DGA Awards and won in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.

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