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Saturday, July 25, 2015

Live from New York, it's SNL's Top 10 Moments of 1975-76

To celebrate Saturday Night Live's 40th anniversary on October 11, I thought it would be fun to feature some of the show's most memorable moments (in chronological order). So let's begin with SNL's first season (1975-76):

NBC's Saturday Night was scheduled to debut on October 4, 1975, but "The Not Ready For Prime Time Players" were not ready that evening. So instead Tom Snyder hosted a special Saturday edition of his late-night talk show, Tomorrow, in which creator/producer Lorne Michaels introduced the original SNL cast for the first time - Dan Aykroyd, John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Jane Curtin, Garrett Morris, Laraine Newman and Gilda Radner.

1) "Jaws II"
Episode 4/November 8, 1975
The debut of the Land Shark (Chevy Chase) featuring Candice Bergen, who is SNL's first female host.

2) "Racist Word Association Interview"
Episode 7/December 13, 1975
Featuring Chevy Chase and host Richard Pryor.

3) "Exorcist II"
Episode 7/December 13, 1975
Two priests (Richard Pryor and Thalmus Rasulala) visit a possessed Regan (Laraine Newman).

4) "Killer Bees"
Episode 9/January 10, 1976
A young couple (Chevy Chase, Gilda Radner) are taken hostage by killer bees, featuring host Elliot Gould, Lorne Michaels and Madeline Kahn's mother, Paula Kahn, as Gilda's mother. This episode won SNL a 1976 Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy-Variety or Music Series.

5) "Samurai Delicatessen"
Episode 10/January 17, 1976
A customer (host Buck Henry) orders a sandwich from Samurai Futaba (John Belushi).

6) "Super Bass-O-Matic '76"
Episode 17/April 17, 1976
Dan Aykroyd and Laraine Newman are featured in this commercial for a fish blender.

7) "Not For Ladies Only"
Episode 19/May 8, 1976
TV host Baba Wawa (Gilda Radner) interviews movie star Marlene Dietrich (host Madeline Kahn).

8) Emily Litella on "Weekend Update"
Episode 19/May 8, 1976
Emily (Gilda Radner) discusses "violins" on television.

9) "Final Days"
Episode 19/May 8, 1976
Written by future U.S. Senator Al Franken and Tom Davis, this sketch features host Madeline Kahn as Pat Nixon, Dan Aykroyd as President Richard Nixon, Chevy Chase as David Eisenhower, Gilda Radner as Julie Eisenhower, and John Belushi as Henry Kissinger. Unfortunately, the video ends before Sammy Davis Jr. (Garrett Morris) pays a visit to Nixon.

10) The Last Voyage of the Starship Enterprise
Episode 22/May 29, 1976
An NBC executive (host Elliot Gould) enters the Starship Enterprise to announce that the Star Trek series has been canceled. The sketch features Chevy Chase as Mr. Spock/Leonard Nimoy and John Belushi as Captain Kirk/William Shatner.

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