It’s another year of mass exodus at NBC’s “Saturday Night Live.” It happens every half decade or so. A pillar of the SNL cast decides to leave the show and two or three long time cast mates usually leave with them. This year, the pillar was the shows funniest woman, Kristen Wiig. Then our Joe Biden, Jason Sudeikis left, and late last night Andy Samberg confirmed his departure from SNL as well.
Andy Samberg is one of my favorite SNL cast mates since Will Farrell left in 2002. No, he’s not Farrell or Bill Hader or Bill Murray. He’s not an all-time great like those guys or Chris Farley or Mick Myers, but he did leave a mark on the show where so many before him never could.
Damon Waynes, Chris Rock, Eddie Murphy, Sarah Silverman, and so many others could never really get going at SNL, but Andy Samberg did. In fact, on December 17th, 2005, he wrote himself into the SNL history books when the Digital Short, “Lazy Sunday” Premiered. He and Chris Parnell where so good, “It was Scary,” and from that moment on Samberg was able to talk guest stars into going out with him during the week of rehearsal to make these digital shorts all around New York City. The next hit was “Dick in a Box,” with Justin Timberlake and after the success of that, random celebrities, actors, and actresses would be at Samberg’s disposal. The Digital Short became his weekly schtick and this season he past the century mark. He made over 100 Digital Shorts for the program.
Andy Samberg in Digital Short, “Lazy Sunday”
Andy Samberg’s “Lazy Sunday” was so successful online, SNL pulled all its original content from youtube.com and every other website that posted them. This gave rise to Hulu, the only place on the net you can watch SNL clips. Sure, other sites post clips they rip off their Tivo, but within a couple of weeks they are also served with a cease and desist order.
In that way, Andy Samberg changed SNL forever and when you’re talking about an institution like SNL, which has featured some of the best comedians in the world over the last 36 years, that’s nothing to bat your eyes at. It’s a great accomplishment. Trust me we will forget half the cast mates to ever appear on SNL, but no one will forget Andy Samberg.
You had a good run Andy. Gook luck, it’s sad to see you go.
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