Betty White on SNL

Photo: NBC

Did you see Betty White hosting Saturday Night Live last night? It was one of the funniest episodes in years. She scored in almost every skit while the average host is lucky to get a couple laughs in the entire show. Though the running theme was “Let’s see how dirty Betty White can be” (it did get gimmicky towards the end), she was game and showed she could raunch it up with the best of them.

And she was among some of the best cast members from the show’s recent history. Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Molly Shannon, Rachel Dratch, Maya Rudolph and Ana Gasteyer returned to form an all-star company around Betty, with Shannon bringing back her Sally “I’m 50” O’Malley character, only to have Betty whup her ass (she did the kicks!) by declaring “I’m 90.”

Highlights: (click on links to watch the skits)

  • Gasteyer and Shannon reprising their roles of the droll NPR ladies hosting the Delicious Dish talk show, discussing food in double entendres (see: the famous Schweddy balls skit with Alec Baldwin). This time they bring on Betty to talk about her muffins. Gasteyer: “There’s a tangy taste in this muffin. Is that a cherry?” Betty: “My muffin hasn’t had a cherry since 1939.”
  • Betty giving wacky answers to Fey when Fey shows up at her apartment as a census taker. Asked what her ethnicity is, Betty replies, “Superior to Asians but not as intelligent as blacks.” Fey: “How many people live at this residence?” Betty: “Zero.” Fey: “You don’t live here?” Betty: “Oh, including me? Three.”
  • In her opening monologue, she makes fun of Facebook, which fans used to campaign for her hosting gig. “[In my day], we had poking but it wasn’t something you did on a computer. It was something we did on a hayride. Under a blanket.” She concluded by saying, “If I could, I would take you all on a big hayride.”
  • In an old-fashioned Little Women-style skit, Betty tells her girls if she could do it all over again, she’d probably be a lesbian. “There’s one thing I would not miss: balls.”
  • Betty telling some punks if they don’t shape up, they won’t get a fairy tale ending but will instead come face to face with “the Wizard of Ass” in prison.

What did you think of the show? Did you find Betty being naughty funny? Or did her saying “motherf***ker” go too far?



  • Reply
    May 9, 2010 at 9:09 am

    I really wish I could have caught this! How do you manage to stay up so late? I’m out like a light by 11:30 PM. Hopefully, I can catch this online. Thanks for this, PCN.

    • Reply
      May 9, 2010 at 7:06 pm

      I caught this today. What a blast. Thanks for the heads up to this.

  • Reply
    May 9, 2010 at 10:54 am

    I too am long-asleep by 11:30, so thank you SO much for this post! I just watched the NPR muffin sketch, and I guffawed outloud a few times. (And I’m not one to laugh out loud much.) I can’t wait to watch the rest of these clips! Yay for Betty — she’s awesome!

  • Reply
    May 9, 2010 at 11:42 am

    i thought she was fantastic. if i have that much humor and grace next YEAR, i’ll be happy. totally inspiring woman!!

  • Reply
    May 9, 2010 at 11:43 am

    I thought it was one of the best episodes I’ve seen in a long time. The current cast spends way too much time on characters that simply don’t work. For instance, I will usually fast forward through anything with Kenan Thompson (Phinese Mitchell was way funnier) or anything with Kristen Wiig in a strange outfit. These two may write more scenes, but their bits rarely hit the mark. Weekend Update is usually good.

    Ms. White really did seem up for anything. The funniest for me was the scene with Tina Fey. It didn’t rely on being raunchy so much as being funny.

    Hope they let her do another before she “kicks it”.

  • Reply
    May 9, 2010 at 1:17 pm

    I threw away all the muffins in my house this morning because of Betty White’s skit on SNL last night. LOL!

  • Reply
    May 9, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    Betty White was charming and funny as always. I think they did push her too far in the foul mind and mouth direction just because they could.

    But the problem with SNL and always has been (except it has gotten worse) is that IT IS NOT FUNNY. Every sketch is drawn out way too long. They don’t know when to stop. I do and usually turn if off mid-show when we think, “This is not funny but it is definitely boring.”

    It is not easy to write comedy, especially a weekly 90 minutes show (well more like 70 minutes with commercials and music).
    So I just wait for Hulu and skip through the tons of crap.

  • Reply
    Jen Forbus
    May 9, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    I think I’m going to have to hunt this one down. I’ve loved the personas she’s been taking on in films recently. She’s just so spunky! And always funny. God bless her, she’s contributed so much to the entertainment of Americans for many years now.

  • Reply
    May 10, 2010 at 7:40 am

    So glad to hear that the episode was a success! With her comedic timing and persona of sweetness, I don’t doubt that Betty could pull off any skits with touches of naughty or profanity. In an interview I saw last week, I loved Betty White’s response to comments or questions about “being back” with the popularity of the Snickers commercial with something along the lines of “I left?” She did say she was a little nervous about the use of the cue cards on SNL.

    I need to catch the episode on Hulu or something. Thanks for this, PCN!

  • Reply
    Shell Sherree
    May 11, 2010 at 12:07 am

    Oh rats, Hulu doesn’t work here! Based on your review, I’m guessing I’d have been guffawing and slapping my knee. Those Snickers ads Christine mentions are being played here, too, thank goodness ~ hilarious!

  • Reply
    May 12, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    I caught this and have to say that there were some highlights for me. I really thought that the delicious dish sketch was a home run. I also enjoyed her turn as macgruber’s grandmother. She was great in everything she did on the show but the material other than the two examples above seems to have been for the sole reason of making an old woman say dirty things, which was not particularly funny. She did a great job with some horrid material.

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