Apparently in celebration of Mother's Day, Saturday Night Live had Betty White on as the guest host last night. I'm not a regular fan of SNL any more but I found myself up at 11:30 so I tuned in. It's no secret that SNL is not as funny as it used to be. They have had some ups and downs over the 35 year run and I would say the last few years goes into the books as one of the downs. Last night did nothing to improve that trend.
The whole premise of the show seemed to be, let's get Betty White to be as raunchy as we can. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind a raunchy joke or two but raunchy for raunchy sake is pretty old. Lenny Bruce was doing it 45 years ago and after a while, even that got lame. The thing with SNL though is it just ain't funny!
They had Betty in several MacGruber skits. She played MacGruber's grandmother and she would say things to embarass him. MacGruber is a take off on the MacGyver TV show. That show has been out of production for 18 years. The first time I saw a MacGruber skit, it took me a while to figure out what they were spoofing!
Another skit was designed to have Ms. White say the word lesbian several times. Once may have been humorous, by the 5th time, the skit had already died.
Yet another skit was the NPR Delicious Dish, a running skit that ran its course a long time ago. Anyway, they tried to get the same kind of milage they got from Alec Baldwin when he appeared in the skit a few years ago. The Baldwin Shweddy Balls routine was clever. With Betty they replaced balls with muffin and they all would continue to refer to Betty's muffin. It mustered a chuckle but it didn't work as well as Alec's balls.
Betty White is 88 years old. She has a long history in television. And, I think it is great that she is still working and poking fun at her own image. The Snicker's commercial first aired during the SuperBowl was great. I like the fact that she is ok with playing raunchy at her age. But, the stuff they wrote for her last night wasn't really raunchy, it was closer to garbage.