SNL Transcripts: Cicely Tyson: 02/10/79


 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 4: Episode 11

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Air Date:


Musical Guest:

Special Guests:


Bit Players:

February 10th, 1979

Cicely Tyson

Talking Heads



Al Franken

Paul Shaffer

Andy Murphy
Belushi’s Sketch CutSummary: “Emergency”, starring Megan Marshack, is pre-empted in favor of tonight’s episode of “Saturday Night Live”, though things may be in for a rough start because John Belushi’s Deng sketch is cut after it’s learned that the Vice-Premiere already returned to China.



Cicely Tyson’s MonologueSummary: Garrett Morris steps onto the stage in drag to deliver the monologue, convinced that he was assigned the role of Cicely Tyson. A shocked Cicely appears to express her dismay at Garrett’s lack of dignity on SNL.

Bio: Known for her loyalty in performing only strong, positive images of black women, Cicely Tyson (1933-) found her greatest success in the television films “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman” in 1974 (in which she won an Emmy for portraying a 110-year-old slave who looks back on her life), and “Roots” in 1977.


Elvis Presley’s CoatSummary: The King may be dead, but his coat lives on and is a major hit at concert performances.

Note: Repeat from 78d.

The WidettesSummary: The Widette Family (Dan Aykroyd, Jane Curtin, John Belushi, Gilda Radner) meet Earl (Garrett Morri) and Wilma Bass (Cicely Tyson), a couple with similar oversized butts.

Recurring Characters: Betty Widette, Bob Widette, Jeff Widette, Tammy Widette.

The Shah’s Final DaysSummary: Sherri Norwalk (Laraine Newman), working as an embassy receptionist in Iran, makes the Shah’s (Bill Murray) visitors wait to see him.

Recurring Characters: Sherry, Jason, Granny, Mohammed Reza Pahlevi.

Talking Heads perform “Take Me To The River”Bio: The Talking Heads are guitarist/vocalist David Byrne, drummer Chris Frantz, bassist Tina Weymouth, and keyboardist Jerry Harrison. Byrne, Frantz and Weymouth met at the Rhode Island School of Design in the early 1970’s, before moving to New York to make music.

Frontier MidwifeSummary: The Frontier Midwife (Cicely Tyson) faces the task of delivering a baby in a cabin full of men.

Weekend Update with Jane Curtin & Bill MurraySummary: Jane Curtin delivers an inappropriate eulogy for Sid Vicious. Via “Strictly Speaking”, Dan Aykroyd comments on an unfair U.S.-China trade agreement.

Nick “Rails”Summary: Nick the Lounge Singer (Bill Murray) entertains passengers on an Auto Train headed to Orlando.

Recurring Characters: Nick the Lounge Singer.


Black PerspectiveSummary: Garrett Morris is appalled when his guest, Cicely Tyson, blames black men for the poor image received by black women.


World At WarSummary: Members of the Walker Brigade perform battle during World War II.

Recurring Characters: Richard Burton.


X-PoliceSummary: The X-Police (Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray) harrass a pair of women (Jane Curtain, Laraine Newman) they mistake for lesbians.

Recurring Characters: The X-Police.

Cicely Sings SicilySummary: Cicely Tyson sings a series of Italian songs.

LitellavisionSummary: Emily Litella hosts an arts presentation in which Garrett Morris and Cicely Tyson star in a performance of “Porky & Bess.”

Recurring Characters: Emily Litella.

Talking Heads performs “Artists Only”


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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