Tina Fey reprises role as Sarah Palin on ‘Saturday Night Live’ with Amy Poehler as Katie Couric

Tina Fey reprised her role as Sarah Palin on "Saturday Night Live," again appearing as the Republican vice presidential candidate in an opening sketch. (Watch video below.) Saturday night's show — the third of the season for the NBC comedy program — brought back the season premiere tandem of Fey and Amy Poehler, who opened the season with a memorable sketch featuring Fey as Palin and Poehler as Hillary Clinton. RELATED: CALLS RISE AMONG GOP FOR PALIN TO STEP DOWN FROM TICKETThis time around, Poehler played CBS's Katie Couric, parodying the interview with Palin earlier this week. Poehler, though, mostly played straight man to Fey, who ratcheted up her performance of Sen. John McCain's running mate by satirizing her foreign affairs experience. When Poehler's Couric pushed Fey's Palin to specifically discuss how she would help facilitate democracy abroad, Fey gave in: "Katie, I'd like to use one of my lifelines. ... I want to phone a friend." When a confused Poehler informed her that that wasn't how the interview worked, Fey's Palin responded — alluding to one of the governor's most quoted lines from the interview — "Well, in that case, I'm just gonna have to get back to ya." RELATED: 1984 PALIN SWIMSUIT VIDEO FROM PAGEANT SURFACESFey, a former cast member and head writer of "SNL," has seemingly been thrust back into regular appearances on the program despite her full-time gig with NBC's "30 Rock." She is widely considered to look like Palin, and "SNL" executive producer Lorne Michaels persuaded her to ride the show's hot hand. Her first appearance as the Alaskan governor two weeks ago was a huge hit, helping boost the premiere's ratings and garnering attention online. Fey wasn't the only former cast member who returned Saturday night. Chris Parnell came back to play presidential debate moderator Jim Lehrer in a sketch that parodied Friday night's contest between McCain and Democratic rival Barack Obama — which occurred less Continue Reading

SNL’s politics: Will Ferrell’s President Bush meets Tina Fey’s Sarah Palin on ‘Saturday Night Live’

Appearing as President George W. Bush on the primetime edition of the comedy show "Saturday Night Live," Will Ferrell offered his political "strategery" to Tina Fey's Sarah Palin.Ferrell reprised his famed impression of the president on the live "Weekend Update" special Thursday to give an "impromptu" evening address to the nation. He spoke about the election between John McCain and Barack Obama — both candidates, he said, that are "heavily patriotized" and "display much characterization."RELATED: McCAIN AIMS NEW ATTACKS... AT BUSHHe then gave his endorsement to McCain and Palin, something that they apparently didn't want. Ferrell said he was unaware that his approval ratings were low because he had several months ago declared the Oval Office a "bummer free zone."Speaking to Fey, who again appeared as Palin, Ferrell informed her that her role as vice president was "the most important in the land" and that the "president can do nothing without checking with the vice president." Fey corrected him that he had it backward.Eventually Darrell Hammond as McCain turned up to reluctantly receive the endorsement.The sketch between Ferrell and Fey was the meeting of the two of the most popular political impressions in the show's history. It might have been complete only if Chevy Chase stopped by as Gerald Ford, Dana Carvey appeared as H.W. Bush and Amy Poehler joined as Hillary Clinton.An alum to the NBC comedy show, Ferrell was the latest guest star to make an appearance on "SNL," which has seen its ratings soar this election season. Fey has become a virtual cast member again, thanks to the popularity of her Palin impression, while other surprise guests have included Chris Parnell, Bill Murray, Mark Wahlberg, Alec Baldwin and Queen Latifah.Ferrell, a regular on "SNL" from 1995-2006, will in January begin a solo show on Broadway titled "You're Welcome America: A Final Night with George W. Bush."A regular episode of "SNL" will air Saturday with Jon Hamm ("Mad Men") Continue Reading

Amy Poehler: Leaving ‘Saturday Night Live’ will be ‘hard’

Amy Poehler is leaving "Saturday Night Live" after this season in order to focus on family. The comedienne/actress, who expecting her first child with "Arrested Development" star Will Arnett, talked about parting with the show during an interview with Men's Vogue.RELATED STORY: TINA FEY LEADS SNL IN 2ND BEST PREMIERE EVER"It's gonna be really hard - Boyz II Men hard - to say goodbye to yesterday," Poehler jokingly said of her nearly seven-year stint on the show. PHOTOS: SEE WILL ARNETT AND OTHER CELEBS ON 'SESAME STREET'"'SNL' was dangerous, late-night, last-minute and star-studded, but like any good drug, you need to know when to put it down."PHOTOS: SEE WHICH CELEBS COULD PLAY PALINAccording to an SNL rep, the actress is staying with the show until her baby is born. PHOTOS: HOLLYWOOD'S CUTEST KIDSThough the mom-to-be makes no guarantee for a return to late-night TV, the star is reportedly working on her own show with "The Office" producers and writers at NBC.Just last weekend, Poehler made headlines again for her spot-on portrayal of Senator Hillary Clinton in SNL's season premiere. Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

Tina Fey leads ‘Saturday Night Live’ in 2nd best premiere ever

Funnygirl Tina Fey channeled vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin this weekend on "Saturday Night Live" – and help the show achieve its best-rated premiere since September 2001. Fey delivered a spot-on imitation of her doppelganger, alongside Amy Poehler as Hillary Clinton. QUIZ: PALIN-TOLOGY: WHAT DO YOU KNOW?Olympic golden boy Michael Phelps hosted the premiere (with a little help from "SNL" alum William Shatner), which accounted for the top market audience in Baltimore, the champion swimmer's hometown. PHOTOS: SEE WHICH CELEBS COULD PLAY PALINAccording to Nielsen Media Research, the "SNL" premiere was up 64% compared to last year's. This season's premiere was the second most-watched "SNL" ever, falling behind the Dec. 17, 2002 episode, when former vice president Al Gore guest-hosted and Phish was the musical guest. Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

Sarah Palin on ‘Saturday Night Live’? Candidate & show both open to it

It seems like the inevitable comedic summit of this fall's presidential campaign: the real Sarah Palin coming on "Saturday Night Live" to meet her look-alike impersonator, Tina Fey.RELATED: PALIN TO DROP PUCK AT RANGERS-FLYERS"All in good time," said a cagey Lorne Michaels, longtime executive producer of NBC's "Saturday Night Live," which has been rejuvenated this fall by Fey's three skits as the Republican vice presidential candidate.Michaels said on Wednesday he wasn't actively seeking Palin, but that the McCain campaign called after the first skit, when Fey's Palin appeared with Amy Poehler's Hillary Clinton on the show's Sept. 13 season premiere, to say they enjoyed it.RELATED: SETH MEYERS WOULD LOVE TO HAVE SARAH ON SNL"Saturday Night Live" has a long history of political walk-ons. Michaels prefers keeping this sort of news a surprise until it happens, an opinion reinforced when word leaked that Barack Obama would be on that same show and the Democratic presidential candidate had to cancel at the last minute. "I think we looked stupid," he said.There are three more first-run "Saturday Night Live" episodes before the election. Starting Thursday, NBC is also airing three prime-time editions of the show at 9:30 p.m. EDT.Palin told reporters on Tuesday she'd love to appear on the show with Fey.RELATED: INDICTMENT IN PALIN E-MAIL SNOOP"I love her, she's a hoot and she's so talented," Palin said. "It would be fun to meet her, imitate her and keep on giving her new material."From the moment Palin was selected as John McCain's running mate, Michaels said he barely had time to consider the idea of Fey impersonating her. Others did it for him."The next day the doorman in my building said, ‘What a gift, you're going to have so much fun with Tina Fey,"' he said.Fey needed some convincing, primarily because she was busy with her Emmy Award-winning role as harried late-night show producer on "30 Rock." The day of "SNL's" season premiere, she was shooting an episode of Continue Reading

‘Saturday Night Live’ full of b-words, but still short one good Obama

If the four-month writers' strike threw "Saturday Night Live" off its game, that wasn't evident when it returned this weekend: The late-night institution was as uneven as ever. On the upside was the show's unannounced "bitch" motif, which presumably was to some extent the inspiration of guest host Tina Fey, who was the head "SNL" writer for years before she broke out in her own sitcom "30 Rock." Whether it was Fey or not, someone slipped the b-word into the water at "SNL" this week, since it was the centerpiece of three major bits. The first was a fake ad - a strong suit of "SNL" - satirizing products that limit a woman's menstrual cycle. This one promised "just one period a year.… But when it comes, look out!" Fey and other women then crashed into an office with sledgehammers. The second had Fey defending Hillary Clinton during a "Weekend Update" commentary by saying, yes, she's a bitch, "But bitches get things done!" In the tradition of "SNL" rants that escalate until the speaker finally says something from Outer Space, Fey ended by waving her arms and declaring, "Bitch is the new black!" The third bit had Kenan Thompson hosting a show called "What's That Bitch Talking About?" with Fey as a contestant who could hear a few lines of generic gibberish on one end of a phone call and know the whole story behind the call. At a time when much of America finds itself increasingly saying "Huh?" to half the phrases it overhears, this skit worked nicely. It didn't need the "bitch" part to carry the joke, but as noted before, that seemed to be in the water. Missing from the water was a solution to the Barack Obama dilemma. With Obama much more prominent now than when the show left, it needs to get him right. Saturday night, it didn't. Thompson, the only black cast member, just isn't a physical match for Obama, so the show mummified Fred Armisen with enough makeup so he looked like a refugee from a wax museum. No sale. Equally troubling, Continue Reading

Dana Carvey’s timing is off in Saturday Night Live alum’s new HBO special

DANA CARVEY: SQUATTING MONKEYS TELL NO LIES. Saturday at 10 p.m., HBO Time is not on Dana Carvey's side. No, age isn't the problem, even though he makes numerous jokes about his father forgetting the name of the movie he just saw. The problem is that Saturday night's new hour-long HBO special, filmed before a live audience in Santa Rosa, Calif., features too many jokes that have timed out - like a long bit on Dick Cheney accidentally shooting one of his pals on a hunting trip. The bit itself is funny. Cheney sees his pal coming out of the brush and telling him not to shoot. Ha, says Cheney. This is a common ploy of Texas quail, talking like a person. He pumps him full of buckshot. Pretty good. But funnier back when it happened, which seems like a long time ago. HBO says the special was taped "recently," but with Carvey's kind of material, maybe not recently enough. Even the Hillary Clinton jokes feel like they've gotten a little yellow around the edges. Topical material is like that. Happily, not all his subjects are on hiatus. Carvey observes that Barack Obama is an unusual presidential candidate because "he looks like a cross between that Mad magazine guy and Urkel." Also because Barack Hussein Obama is about as startling a name as you could imagine for a major-party presidential candidate, leading Carvey to conjure a mock political ad for a candidate named Charles Manson Hitler. Carvey understands the freshness problem, by the way. His long bit about Al Gore, in which Gore becomes a swishy tree-hugger, is clearly an update of routines about Gore as a stiff presidential candidate. Since Carvey built much of his "Saturday Night Live" reputation on imitations of political personalities, he finds a way here to mash a half-dozen of them together. He imagines a scene in 1988 where future presidential candidates gather to hear what's going to happen over the next 20 years. George H.W. Bush is happy to hear one of his sons will become President and startled Continue Reading

Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani get laughs on ‘Saturday Night Live’

Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani popped up on "Saturday Night Live" Saturday night to make fun of the campaign trail.Clinton took a secretive cross-country flight to New York to be on the NBC show after an afternoon campaign rally in Fort Worth, Tex.Shortly after a skit portraying the media fawning over her Democratic rival, Barack Obama, in an MSNBC debate, the former First Lady spoke directly to the camera to say she adores Amy Poehler's impression of her.Poehler then appeared, wearing the same pantsuit as Clinton. "Oh well, my ears are ringing," Poehler said. "Thank you for coming. I love your outfit."Poehler asked how the campaign was going.Clinton said that it's going very well. "Why?" she asked abruptly. "What have you heard?"Giuliani, who dropped out of the Republican contest Jan. 30, appeared on the "Weekend Update" segment.He defended his strategy of focusing his campaign on Florida instead of earlier primaries and caucuses, saying, "My mistake was years ago when I hosted this show and wore a dress. The Florida plan was solid, but the dress killed me."He described his campaign as "like a 'Saturday Night Live' skit. It started strong, but you really don't have an ending." Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

WATCH: ‘Saturday Night Live’ spoofs Hillary Clinton’s presidential announcement

Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign is officially ready to be spoofed. The former secretary of state and first lady, who announced her candidacy for the 2016 presidency Sunday was spoofed by Saturday Night Live during its cold open. Cast member Kate McKinnon, portraying Clinton, is meeting with an aide at her home in Chappaqua, N.Y. as she attempts to film a coherent selfie video to get the support of future voters. "Oh gosh I don't know if I have it in me. I'm scared. I'm kidding, let's do this," McKinnon quips. "You put the 'hil' in hilarious," her aide remarks. After some initial vocal warm-up exercises — "first female president, first female president, me, me, me, me, me me" — Clinton does have a few missteps but luckily she's comfortable deleting a few bad takes off her phone. "I know a thing or two about that right?" she cracked — referencing her deleted email scandal. She continues on, but it gets harder as her husband Bill, played by show veteran Darrell Hammond, drops in to video bomb his wife. "Hillary, isn't it crazy that phones can take videos now? If they could have done that in the 90s, (laughs) I'd be in jail," he cracks. During the skit, the "humble and gracious" candidate gets through the video, but has a few challenges ahead on the upcoming campaign. Though she had a hard time keeping a straight face when saying possible Democratic opponents could give a potential challenge, she will need to be talked out of her plan to name herself her own vice-president. USING A MOBILE DEVICE? WATCH THE VIDEO HERE. Continue Reading

‘Saturday Night Live’ comic Jay Pharoah says his targets, which include President Obama, Jay Z and Kanye West, don’t seem to mind the mockery

"Saturday Night Live” aired its season finale last night, and funnyman Jay Pharoah thinks he made it through another year unscathed. Pharoah, who impersonates President Obama, Jay Z and Kanye West, says his targets don’t seem to mind the mockery. “If they like it, they like it. If they don’t, then I will hear about it on Twitter,” the 27-year-old comedian told [email protected] at the M&M store in Times Square while backing the Red Nose Day #MAKEMLAUGH campaign. Pharoah, 27, from Chesapeake, Va., joined the show in 2010, but it wasn’t until 2012 that he introduced his impersonation of Obama to the “SNL” audience. He also impersonates Hollywood hunks Jamie Foxx and Denzel Washington as well as former “Saturday Night Live” star Eddie Murphy. “I haven’t heard any bad things. But for the most part it is positive and I keep it like that,” said Pharoah. If anyone does have issues with him, it’ll be a one-sided fight. “I don’t have any beef with anybody,” he adds. Pharoah explains that getting into character is second nature for him. He says he’s been a crowd-pleaser since age 6. “Everything that I do that (viewers) see is in the wheelhouse. Nothing I do, do I think, ‘Oh, this is hard to do.’ … It’s just all relative to me.” One of Pharoah’s favorites is a skit he gets to do with on-air pal Kenan Thompson. “Shaquille O’Neal (Pharoah) and Charles Barkley (Thompson) is fun for me. I love playing that character even though it hurts my eyes when I do it, because I cross them and keep them crossed.” O’Neal doesn’t seem to have a problem. He tweeted last year, “Jay Pharaoh is the man, lol.” No doubt that was a welcome tweet from Shaq, who stands 7-foot-1 and weighs 325 pounds. “SNL” closed its milestone 40th season Saturday with Louie C.K. as host Continue Reading