Unlike the Rest of the World, SNL Had a Hard Time Joking About the Debate

Seth Meyers of Saturday Night Live speaks with First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House Correspondents' Association annual dinner in Washington DC, April 30, 2011. AFP PHOTO / Chris KLEPONIS (Photo credit should read CHRIS KLEPONIS/AFP/Getty Images)
Seriously, no joking about Barack. Photo: CHRIS KLEPONIS

In an unusual move, NBC allowed the New York Times to sit in on SNL’s writing and rehearsal process last week. The paper reports that mining the debates for comedy was surprisingly difficult, and the sketch was nearly cut at the last minute. “It’s boring enough when they’re talking about all this and how it will affect Americans, but when you’re sitting there trying to pull comedy out of it, it’s really bad,” Seth Meyers said. “There were people on Twitter saying: ‘You must be really happy, there’s so much in this debate. This is writing itself.’ I was like: what debate are you watching?” Apparently President Obama had the same problem, but on Sunday he was finally able to joke about his flop. Following performances by Katy Perry, Earth Wind & Fire, and Stevie Wonder at a concert fund-raiser in L.A., Obama said the musicians “just perform flawlessly, night after night.” He added, “I can’t always say the same.”

SNL Had a Hard Time Joking About the Debate