SNL Transcripts: Saturday Night Live in the ’80s: Lost and Found: 11/13/05

Saturday Night Live Transcripts

Special: Saturday Night Live in the ’80s: Lost and Found

1981-82 opening montage

Announcer: And now, from New York, the most dangerous city in America, it’s “Saturday Night Live.” Starring Robin Duke, Christine Ebersole, Mary Gross, Tim Kazurinsky….Tony Rosato, Brian Doyle-Murray —

Bob Tischler V/O: The new cast included some seasoned comedy players.

Dick Ebersol V/O: And they were largely choices influenced by John and Danny.

Bob Tischler V/O: They’d done a lot of comedy. They’d done a lot of sketch comedy. They were NOT intimidated by the process.

Mr. & Mrs. T’s Bloody Mary Mix: 10/02/82

Mrs. T: Shut up, old man, shut up! Never canned ’em to the death! I canned the man! But I pity him first!

Spray-On Laetril: 10/17/81

All: [ singing ] “The Pump!”

Sarcastic Nun: 11/12/83

Father Alexander: You do want to serve God, don’t you?

Nun: Oh, no. I’m a nun. I want to worship Satan and dance naked at a black mass.

The Whiners’ Anniversary: 04/10/82

Maitre’D: Your name is, Sir, please?

Doug & Wendy: Doug and Wendy Whinerrrr!

Marvin the Iguana: 10/23/82

Marvin the Iguana: This is exciting. This place brings out the animal in me.

Mary Gross: I’m sorry to say this, but I thought the show was a sinking ship.

Tim Kazurinsky: I didn’t care what a poo the show was in. I just thought, I’m gonna go around and plug up the leaks. I want this thing to stay afloat until I get a house.
I Married A Monkey: 04/11/81

Tim: Don’t you see what I’m trying to do here? I am trying to save a marriage! I’m trying to save a family.

Mary Gross: I think we were very lucky to come in in 1981. Because the cast that came in, in 1980, had to take a lot of abuse from the critics because they were following those five golden years.

Barry Blaustein: Now it’s accepted that you replace the cast of “Saturday Night Live,” and new people go on. At that time, people questioned whether the show should even continue after the original cast.

Robin Duke: There was not a feeling that this was – this was gonna be great. You know, that we were going to save the show, I guess! [ laughs ]
Goodnights: 10/10/81

Susan St. James: “Saturday Night” is back! Good night, everybody! [ Cheers and applause ]

Joe Piscopo: At that point, we went from lackadaisical and cocky to “We’ve got something here. Don’t screw this up, now.”

Andy Breckman: Ebersol was smart enough to know what he didn’t know. He was the only guy in the business I ever heard turn to somebody else and say, “Is that funny? I just don’t know.” Like, he would just admit, “I don’t know.”

Neil Levy V/O: The difference was, there was hip people walking around who knew comedy and had some history.

Dick Ebersol: Lorne said to me, “You know who you should really consider as your right arm in all this, is Michael.”

Lorne Michaels: I said to Dick, at least it will send the right signals.

Tim Kazurinsky: Michael O’Donoghue, the Dark Prince. Oh, my God!
George Thoroughgood & The Destroyers perform “Bad to The Bone”: 10/02/82

George Thoroughgood: [ singing ]
“Now on the day I was born
The nurses all gathered ’round
And they gazed in wide wonder
At the joy they had found.

The head nurse spoke up
Said, “Leave this one alone.”
She could tell right away
That I was bad to the bone.

Bad to the bone
B-b-bad b-b-bad b-b-bad.”

??? V/O: Dick and Michael were at odds from the beginning of day one.

Dick Ebersol: The first fight we had was over billing. Because he wanted to be called “Reich Marshall.”
24:08The Fiesta Cheese Platter: 02/19/83

Marvin the Iguana: [ on the phone ] Oh, no! No. Room Service? Yeah, we’d like to cancel the “Bavarian Pork Surprise.” [ a German marching band suddenly bursts into the room ] Cancel the “Bavarian Pork Surprise!” No!

??? V/O: Just delighted in being outrageous and upsetting people as much as he possibly could.

Tim Kazurinsky: It was nuts. When I showed up to work, Michael said, “Viking death! We’re going to take this ship down.”

??? V/O: And he just wanted to make it as outrageous as possible while it was going down.
The Bizarro World: 02/20/82

Narrator: [ a cubed Earth spins in space ] Somewhere in space, there exists a parallel universe. Where our earthly events are duplicated. But they are duplicated backwards, for it is a reflection. Our Earth is a sphere, so the parallel Earth is, of course, a cube. This is “The Bizarro World.” But even in this strange world, there is one place so bizarre, it scares even them — [ dissolve to: ] The headquarters of “Bizarro Broadcasting Company!”

[ dissolve to interior, Network President’s office, as Secretary enters ]

Secretary: Mr. President, man is here for job interview.

Network President: We too busy. Send him in! [ Writer enters ] Good-bye, good-bye.

Writer: Me want to work for “Bizarro Network.”

Network President: Ever write a script?

Writer: No.

Network President: Ever direct a show?

Writer: No.

Network President: Know anything at all about television?

Writer: No.

Network President: Congratulations!

??? V/O: Dick Ebersol’s most amazing talent is he’s able to deal with the network. And he kept the network away from the show.

Bob Tischler: I don’t remember ever, ever having any network interference at all. You know, except for things that we couldn’t do because of censorship.
The Bulge: 10/06/84

[ Jim Belushi in barroom men’s room, watching as Gary Kroeger stuffs toilet paper in his pants ]

[ Jim Belushi follows suit, and endlessly stuffs toilet paper in his own pants ]

Jim Belushi: We had a film piece. Sasaying, “you can’t do that! That’s a penis!” Ebersol went and fought for that piece. And this is the way he negotiated — “Okay, as long as it’s not smooth.”
The Bulge: 10/06/84

[ Jim Belushi emerges from the men’s room with 6-foot padding in his pants ]

Jim Belushi V/O: So we had this 6-foot thing with all these bumps on it. It looked grosser than it would smooth. Ebersol had a way with the network.
Lone Justice performs “Shelter”: 12/20/86

Lone Justice: [ singing ]
“Let me be your shelter
Shelter from the storm outside.
Let me be your shelter
Shelter From the endless tide.”

Dick Ebersol: The cast benefited on a number of levels from Eddie’s emerging stardom. I think Eddie and Joe Piscopo saved the show. I think that’s fair to say. Because the network was seriously thinking about giving it the ax.
Back | Next: Eddie Murphy Emerges

SNL Transcripts

SNL Transcripts: Saturday Night Live in the ’90s: Pop Culture Nation: 05/06/07

 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Special: Saturday Night Live in the ’90s: Pop Culture Nation

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Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight: 12/14/91

Steve Martin: My old King Tut costume.. I remember this. This was back when the show meant something.. Back when I used to care..

Molly Shannon: It was just at a point in my life where I felt like nothing could stop me. I was just determined to make it work. Because I knew how lucky I was, you know, to, to have gotten there.
Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight: 12/14/91

[ Steve Martin and the cast dance past Lorne Michaels, who’s recieving a pedicure ]

Lorne Michaels: Steve, what’s going on?

Steve Martin: We’re going to do our best tonight, Lorne!

Lorne Michaels: What? Steve, the show’s on automatic pilot. I don’t even come in until Saturday.

Steve Martin: Lorne, don’t you see? That’s not the way it was in the 70’s. Back in the 70’s, people cared. They believed in something! Now it’s the 80’s, and everything’s yuppie, yuppie, yuppie.. spend, spend, spend!

Lorne Michaels: Steve, it’s the 90’s.

Steve Martin: Whatever. The point is:

“I’ve always wanted to see
How good I could be.
I just want to know.”

Lorne Michaels:
“Then go, Steve, go
And do a great sho-o-o-o-o-o-o-owwwwww!!”

Steve Martin: Thank you, Lorne! I never felt so alive!

Mike Myers: I got a call and was, you know: “Hi, it’s Lorne Michaels.” And I was, like, I thought it was my brother, Paul — he was really good at impressions! And, he said, you know, “Would you like to be on the show?” And I said, “Yes. Please.”Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight: 12/14/91

Steve Martin: “But 20% won’t do tonight!”

Mike Myers: [ stepping out ] “Mr. Martin, I’ll do it for you tonight!”

Julia Sweeney: [ steps out as Pat, but strips herself of the characterand costume ]
“Gonna do something different tonight.
Something says not to just do Pat tonight!”

Chris Kattan: I said, “Yeah.” I said, “When do I go in and start?” He said it’d be next week, like, literally. I said, “Wow! But, do I, you know –?” It was, literally, like, “Pack your bags.” It’s like Jerry the mouse, in “Tom & Jerry.” Like: [ imitates instrumentation from “Tom & Jerry” cartoons ]
Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight: 12/14/91

Tim Meadows:
“I don’t have any lines.
I’m not in the show.
But something tells me that if I were
I’d be raring to go-o-o-o-o!”

Chris Farley:
“Not gonna get liquored up tonight!
I’m not gonna have a drink tonight!
I’m not gonna drink ’til “Update” is through.
That’s a promise to you, the viewer!”

Tim Meadows: You know, I’m sure, like everyone says, I felt like I had snuck one by them, like they were gonna go, “What is he doing here?”
Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight: 12/14/91

Phil Hartman: [ steps out, holding up a wig and piece of make-up ]
“I hide behind these wigs and this make-up
But tonight I’m gonna let myself shine through.
Yes, they’re gonna see the real Phil Hartman tonight!”

Steve Martin: I wouldn’t do that, Phil.

Phil Hartman: Okay.

Will Ferrell: Lorne, being obviously sarcastic, but really funny, was, like, “No pressure, but the whole show’s riding on your shoulders.” [ laughs ]
Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight: 12/14/91

“We’re gonna learn our lines, do our parts well
Then we’ll go back to coasting
But not while Steve’s host
‘Cause.. we’re..
Not gonna phone it in tonight.
Not gonna sleepwalk through tonight!”

Steve Martin: “I made it happen!”

Cast: “Steve made it happen!”

Steve Martin: “Now it’s in sight!”

Cast: “Now it’s in sight!”

Steve Martin: “Live, from New York –” [ stuck ] Line? [ Cue Card Man points to “It’s New York!” on cue card ] “It’s Saturday Niiiiiiiiiiight!!!!!”

The Sinatra Group: 01/19/91

Frank Sinatra: Let’s start with the chick. What gives, cue ball? I’m looking at you, I’m thinking: fourteen in the side pocket!

Sinead O’Connor: I can’t believe you’re talking about my hair, with all the bloody starvation and suffering in the world right now.

Frank Sinatra: [ mimes a sad, whiny violin solo ] Come on! Swing, baby, you’re platinum!

Al Franken: “SNL” came into the 90’s in a really strong way.

Alec Baldwin: They had a great cast. A great cast.

Tina Fey: Maybe the best cast EVER, top to bottom.

Chris Rock: It was the Yankees. I mean, we were.. good.

Mike Myers: And the writing was so good. All the writers were great: Smigel, The Turners, Jack Handey, Conan. You know, I was just, like — it’s an embarrassment of riches.

Al Franken V/O: It’s a — a confident and happy a show as I’ve been on.
R.E.M. & Kate Pierson perform “Shiny Happy People”: 04/13/91

R.E.M. & Kate Pierson: [ singing ]
“Shiny happy people holding hands.
(Shiny happy people holding hands)
Shiny happy people laughing.”

Fred Wolf: The ratings were high because, uh — “Wayne’s World” was out there, and the “Church Ladys” were going on, and there was a BIG collection of really charismatic people on cast and as featured players.

[ image: Wayne’s World (01/19/91) ]

[ image: Church Chat (12/01/90) ]

[ image: group sketch, 1990 season ]

[ image: White Trash Bed & Breakfast (10/27/90) ]

Kevin Nealon: We started off in the 80’s with, I think, maybe, eight people in the cast. And, uh — and then it, uh, stretched to about eighteen by the early 90’s.

Lorne Michaels: I neverwanted to be in that position again, of, uh — of having to replace everybody at the same time. And, so, we began to, sort of, bring people in as featured players.

Michael Shoemaker: So, it was: Schneider, Spade, Rock and Farley, Julia, Sandler, Meadows. It’s a full cast, added to what was already a full cast.
Steve Martin’s Monologue: 12/14/91

Steve Martin: I love being back here on the show, with a cast I love so much.. the regulars.. Kevin, Dana, Phil.. uh.. Victoria.. and the newer cast members.. Ramone.. Tina.. Frosty.. and Spunky.

Steve Koren: It was a little crowded. You start writing sketches, you know, involving, you know, Army units — [ laughs ] parades.

[ image: Make You Think (04/18/92) ]

[ image: Subliminal Military Briefing (02/16/91) ]

[ image: 17th Annual Star Trek Convention (03/14/92) ]

Tim Meadows: I think part of it was.. new people coming in to a situation where there had been a lot of veterans.
Dick Clark’s Receptionist: 02/22/92

Receptionist: And you are..?

Jesus: I am the Lord. I have come to get on the airwaves that Richard Clark controls, so that I may tell the world that I have come back, as I promised.

Receptionist: Okay, now.. did you have an appointment, orrr..?

Jesus: But, my son, don’t you know Me from the Bible?

Receptionist: I’m not a big reader. I tell you, if you could just have a seat.

David Spade: Even Lorne said, “Everyone’s gonna tell you you should be on the show more. Everyone’s gonna tell you you’re the funniest one on the show. [ a beat ] You’re not.” [ laughs ] And I go, “Ahhhh, ohh.”

Dana Carvey: So, one week — [ laughs ] you’re in the show, and then your well-meaning friends will call you next week, when you’re not on the show: “Yuo got SCREWED, man!! What are they putting THAT on for?! Man, they’re screwing you.” You know — and, you’ve got to really resist that.
Dysfunctional Family Feud: 10/26/91

Announcer: Let’s start the “Dysfunctional Family Feud”!

Tim Meadows V/O: And, so, I think, there’s a sort of competition that the show naturally builds.
Dysfunctional Family Feud: 10/26/91

William Thorton: I’m gonna go out on my own, Ray, and say, “I bet you think you’re smarter than me now.”

Chip Thorton: [ complaining ] Oh, Daaad..

William Thorton: Do you have a problem with that?

Chip Thorton: No, sir.. good answer, sir..

Julia Sweeney: I look at these reality shows now — like, “Project Runway”, or something — [ laughs ] and I think, “Yeah!” I mean, they — that creating competition DOES make people creative.

Michael Shoemaker: When you have a lot of people, the trick is getting on. So, you have to sell what they’re buying. So, topical was always preferred.
A Message From the President of the United States: 12/15/90

President George Bush: None of us want war in that whole area out over there. But as commander-in- chief. I am ever cognizant of my authority to launch a full-scale orgy of death there in the desert sands. Probably won’t, but then again, I might.

Dana Carvey: A lot of sketches are just at the right time in the right place. I think that’s one of the sustaining elements of the show. It’s a cathartic release. You know, the idea of, like, this is what the country’s thinking. But we don’t know we’re thinking it ’til now we see it presented. [ smiles ] Gee, I’m sounding pretty smart!

[ image: Desert Storm Press Briefing (02/09/91) ]

[ image: Turkish Storekeeper (03/13/93) ]

[ image: Godfather Bush (01/12/91)

Dave Matthews Band performs “So Much To Say”: 04/20/96

Dave Matthews Band: [ singing ]
So much to say, so much to say, so much to say, so much to say
So much to say, so much to say, so much to say, so much to say.”

Sarah Silverman: It informs your life so much growing up. People get their news from it! [ laughs ] You know, kids definitely get the news from it!

[ image: Mobile Uplink Unit, Weekend Update (01/19/91) ]
Pumping Up With Hans & Franz: 03/23/91

Franz: Listen! Hear me now and believe me later — we are TIRED of waiting for the allies to start the ground war! So it’s time for us to begin —

Together: Operation [ they clap ] Muscle Storm!!

Weekend Update with Dennis Miller

Dennis Miller: How can we be that afraid of a man who sits like this?

Al Franken: It’s half the reason to do a live show, is that you can comment on what happened that week.
Mr. Subliminal: 12/08/90

Mr. Subliminal: What should the U.S. do about Saddam Hussein? (Lobotomy) What strategy has been the congressional-approved economic sanction? (Waste of time) Because, obviously, nobody wants war. (Republicans) According to President Bush — According to President Bush, nothing is more important than human lives. (Oil) But I think, to avoid war — to avoid war, we need to give Hussein a face-saving way to Kuwait. (Body bag) And I have to say —

Lorne Michaels: If you’re not about what people are thinking that week, then I don’t think that you have any relevance.

Colin Quinn: Like, I remember sitting there on Saurday night, eight o’clock, and Lorne would call you into the office and go: “This just happened.” You know? “THey just had this invasion here.” Or, whatever. Adn you’re trying to get it in — either in the Cold Opening, or an Update. Adn that really keeps it.. LIVE! Because it’s right up to that time it goes on the air.
Wayne’s World: 01/19/91

Wayne & Garth: [ singing ] “Wayne’s World! Special Report! Party Time! Excellent!”

Mike Myers: When the Gulf War broke out, I was doing a “Wayne’s World” cold opening, and.. we had to rewrite it.. thirty-three seconds before we went to air, because.. there was the possibility of massive casualties — nobody knew what it was gonna be. And so we just tried to approach it humbly, and go, “We’re just two kids, watching it on TV like everybody’s watching it on TV.”
Wayne’s World: 01/19/91

Wayne: The first time I heard the word “Scud”, I thought it was like, you know, when you see, like, a really pretty chick walking down the street, you know, about 30 feet away, and you go, “Hello! Babe alert!” Right? But when you get closer, you go, “Oh, my God! She’s a scud!”

Coming up Next: The Debates.

SNL Transcripts