Michael O’Donoghue Tribute
… Bill Murray
[Former cast member Bill Murray stands at Home Base,addressing the camera.]
Bill Murray: Good evening. I’m here to breakthe news about a death in the family. This week,Michael O’Donoghue, one of the original writers andcreators of Saturday Night Live, died.
He had a tremendous influence on this show and on allof us. He was a writer that the writers, actors – andeven the producer – feared. And, in this business,it’s better sometimes to be feared than loved. Butwe’re not afraid of him any more — because he’s dead…. He’s dead and he went straight to hell. … Just -just to visit the couple people he had to meet– uh, Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Richard Speck — andto await the arrival of Pam Grier.
Mike’s work included “Mr. Mike’s Least-Loved BedtimeTales,” “The Claudine Longet Invitational Ski Shoot,”and, of course, his famous impression of Mike Douglasjamming nine-inch needles into his eyes. Michael usedto say, “You only live once and, usually, not eventhen.” But Michael lived well – and we all loved him.Here’s a piece of his, written for Laraine Newman,with Michael O’Donoghue as the bartender.
[Murray looks off stage. Fade out. Fade in on the December 1977 SNL sketch Least-Loved Bedtime Tale: The Soiled Kimono, in which a drunken LaraineNewman is asked to sing the aria from MadameButterfly while bartender O’Donoghue mixes a drinkhe calls “The Soiled Kimono.” Also appearing isO’Donoghue’s future wife Cheryl Hardwick who for manyyears was SNL’s musical director.
Afterwards, we return to Bill Murray at Home Base. Inhis hand is a drink — a Soiled Kimono, complete withpaper butterfly — with which he toasts the widow andthe deceased:]
Bill Murray: Here’s to Cheryl – [removes thepaper butterfly from the drink] – and to Michael.Takes a great man to make a great wake.
[Murray nods and downs the entire contents of theglass. Applause.]