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'Saturday Night Live' Classics to Air in Celebration of 40th Season

By    |   Thursday, 25 Sep 2014 09:28 AM

NBC will begin airing "classic" episodes of "Saturday Night Live" this weekend, opening up the vault on the series' 39-year run with a long list of the sketch show's most infamous cast members, hosts, and musical guests.

Starting this week, "SNL Vintage" hour-long programs will air every Saturday at 10 p.m. before that week's new episode. The new initiative, which commemorates the show's 40th season, kicks off with a doozy — the Dec. 13, 1975, first-season show hosted by comedian Richard Pryor with the controversial Chevy Chase "Word Association" sketch.

It's considered edgy, even by 2014 standards. Comedian Paul Mooney, who wrote the sketch, told Salon.com that it did not come together until two days before the show when it was decided that the "N-word" would be used as the punch line.

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"It's like an H-bomb that Richard and I toss into America's consciousness," Mooney said. "All that s*** going on behind closed doors is now out in the open. There's no putting the genie back in the bottle. The 'N-word' as a weapon, turned back against those who use it, has been born on national TV."

Ranker.com rated the Pryor's "Word Association" sketch with Chase with the best skit ever among those done by the original members of "Saturday Night Live's" original "Not Ready For Prime Time Players."

A 2000 episode hosted by Christopher Walken with music by Christina Aguilera will air Oct. 4, featuring the notorious "Behind the Music: Blue Oyster Cult" sketch.

"These hour-long abridgments aren't the best litmus tests for whether the old episodes were better than today's," the Indianapolis Star wrote. "It's much easier to seem more consistently funny when you have to be funny for less time. In going from 90 minutes to 60 minutes, the editors can cut out the lesser material and selectively leave only the best of the best."

"SNL's" 40th seasons premieres this Saturday at 11:35 p.m. EST. Chris Pratt, star of Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy," will host with musical guest Ariana Grande.

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NBC will begin airing "classic" episodes of "Saturday Night Live" this weekend, opening up the vault on the series' 39-year run with a long list of the sketch show's most infamous cast members, hosts, and musical guests.
saturday night live, classic
360
2014-28-25
Thursday, 25 Sep 2014 09:28 AM
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