'SNL' Tidbits for October 24, 2002

By Sean Bradley,

Senators Aren't Stiff

In hosting "Saturday Night Live" over the weekend, Senator John McCain says he achieved his goal -- and it wasn't to sing the hits of Streisand on network television.

"I was able to communicate with young people who, with all due respect, would never have gotten up to see me on a Sunday-morning show," he tells The New York Times. "What I hope it does is arouse their interest in what guys like me do and what I'm up to and I'm a real human being, instead of some stiff, as they cycle with the channel changer through C-Span."

Overnight Nielsens indicate the show posted a 5.8 rating and a 14 share, down from a 5.9 rating a week earlier with host Sarah Michelle Gellar.

D.C. Gets Their McCain Fix

"SNL" fans in Washington D.C. missed the first half of last weekend's "SNL," while WRC Channel 4 continued its coverage of that evening's sniper attack.

The NBC affiliate plans on broadcasting the unaired portion this Saturday, reports the Washington Post, delaying "SNL's" Halloween Special until midnight so viewers can see what they missed of Senator McCain's hosting effort. The "lost footage" will be edited into a complete half-hour, and aired from 11:30 to midnight.

McCain found out about the preemption on Sunday, and wasn't upset. "It was clearly breaking news," his spokesman Marshall Wittmann tells The Post. "It's perfectly understandable given the current situation that is gripping this region."

Coincidence? ... Probably

Two sources of ridicule in the October 12 episode of "SNL" have been laid to rest.

The episode in question, hosted by Sarah Michelle Gellar, featured Seth Meyers contorting his face as Steven the Dell Dude on "Weekend Update." Jimmy Fallon broke the news to "Steven" that everyone hates him.

Later in the show, Gellar appeared in a mock commercial discussing her problems with bladder control. She said she has a hard time staying dry when she laughs, so to combat the problem she actively watches all seven seasons of the HBO series "Arli$$" on DVD.

Within ten days of the episode's broadcast, Dell announced that Steven would no longer appear in their commercials on a full-time basis and HBO abruptly canceled "Arli$$" on the heels of the series' highest rated season. Job well done, "SNL." Now get back to picking on Carrot Top.


Former "SNL" cast member Rob Schneider has signed to star in "Blind Sided," a comedy he has also agreed to produce.

Variety says the plot revolves around a man who regains his sight after many years only to find out that the world is a very different place from what he had imagined.

See Shaffer with Hair

Former "SNL" featured player Paul Shaffer will be rockin' it up eighties-style when the cable channel Trio brings "Late Night with David Letterman" to its schedule next year.

Letterman's acclaimed NBC series will officially launch on January 2, but Trio will "Give Thanks to Dave" with a 53-hour Thanksgiving marathon.

Among the "SNL" alumni appearing as guests in the marathon reruns: Gilda Radner, Eddie Murphy, Bill Murray, Billy Crystal, Jon Lovitz, and plenty of appearances from former "Letterman" regular Chris Elliot.

Additionally, Trio is devoting much of December to series it deems "brilliant, but canceled." Throughout the month, the channel will air reruns of the short-lived Comedy Central series "TV Funhouse," from "SNL's" Robert Smigel.