Pumas 4 Palin

McCain Approves, SNL skit co-written by Al Franken

Posted on: September 21, 2008

Al Franken is said to have inspired this opener sketch of SNL. It is hillarious.  Click image to go to NBC site.

Writer Seth Myers uses the phrase NObama

From Politico

A Franken campaign aide said the candidate had been taping an ad earlier in the week and had wondered out loud how McCain could include the disclaimer candidates are required to include in their commercials — “I’m John McCain, and I approved this message” — when his spots were so “over the top.”

Later that day, Franken talked to Michaels about topics unrelated to the show and mentioned his thought but did not suggest a sketch.

However, Michaels talked to Meyers about Franken’s idea and the current writer, believing there was a funny sketch there, called his predecessor and they discussed it further.

Meyers then wrote it up.

A very interesting point of note is the way the word NObama is used in the sketch. I suspect the head writer Seth Myers used it, but did Al Franken advocate it?  This blog has written before about the value of the word NObama in American political rhetoric, and the accompanying logo of Nobama Network as a Badge of Outrage. The SNL opener skirts around some of these notions and plays up the ‘I Approve’ meme to perpetuate the myth that somehow McCain’s ads are either false or factually challenged. Aye, there is the rub!

What I find amazing, granted any light-hearted commentary is better than any vituperative, even if a passing aside, and SNL being a venerable institution could be trusted on balance to be even handed or even Just or, just funny, where criticism of candidates is involved, even humor is decidedly partisan this year.  Put down of the Right, even in sarcasm has been through the effect of a diminution of the person; while put down of the Lefty has been positive,  based on glowing acclamations of virtue, even if false.

To wit, all those youtube clips spoofing Obama as the One, the Messiah or Child Went forth, or Completes Us, all are based on praise, not criticism. Where does one see a comedic sketch of his fatal flaws? Oh, yeah, he doesn’t have any. One never sees comedic commentary based on Obama’s lies, hundreds of them found documented in weblogs across the length and breadth of the Internet. Many taken straight within context.

And yet, when McCain is criticized, even the falsehood of a spoof is designed in such a way as to serve to perpetuate the myth, and instigate doubt that the genial, old guy may be lying after all.

It’s here that SNL shows it’s true nature as a creature of the elites that it is. Subtle, unfunny, but true to form. Otherwise, the only way this skit would be funny is, if in spirit, it’s a parody of the Obama campaign platitudes, and the Obamaphiliac’s tendency to invest all things virtuous to Obama. Looked at like that, it is akin to the NYT cover cartoon, a spoof of a sardonic view of a silly stance. A meta-spoof, if you will of Obamisms: take away what you will, it’s all good, comedy that has it’s cake and eats it too!

There is much hinting in the reader commentary at Gawker that Lorne Michaels is a great Hillary fan and possibly McCain’s. Could it be that the SNL producer is a Puma after all?

Bottom line: I am glad someone at SNL had moxie to use NObama!

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