Saturday Night Live

Season 4 Episode 20

Buck Henry/Bette Midler

Aired Saturday 11:30 PM May 26, 1979 on NBC
out of 10
User Rating
12 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Live from New York, it's... John Belushi!

Sketches include "Mr. Bill at SNL," "Ray's Disco Roller Fishing Park," "Samurai Bakery," "Uncle Roy," "Watergate was a Joke," "The Franken and Davis Show," "Olympia Cafe," "Clones Exist Now" (film), and "Not for Transsexuals Only."

Musical guest Bette Midler performed "Martha" and "The Marrying Kind."moreless

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  • Great closer for the season

    Buck hosts for his 8th time and the Devine Miss M. performs

    Cold Open- Mr. Bill at SNL/Jane's upset- Mr. Bill visits SNL and is squished and crushed as usual then says the opening line; meanwhile, Jane is upset over not saying the opening line when a piece of clay does, only to be upstaged by Belushi. Nice opening

    Monologue- Buck says that a portion of the audience will have their interest in the show tracked – low-brow phrases over intelligent phrases; great onscreen visual.

    Ray's Disco Roller Rink and Fishing Park- Ray (Bill) hawks his park which combines all of the aforementioned. Good ad spoof.

    Samurai Bakery- Mr. Dantley (Buck) needs a wedding cake from the samurai at his shop; another fine edition as always with these and an end to a great character. Samurai/Belushi waves goodbye, though never mentioned, this was his last show.

    Nixon reviews- Nixon (Aykroyd) reviews movie about the whitewater incident, then tells what really happened between he and Dean (Buck). These are always great. I especially loved the acting of Nixon and Dean as stoned while saying incriminating evidence.

    Bette Midler soul-shouts on the funky disco of "Married Men"

    Weekend Update- Token sociologist (Garrett) discusses a Rolling Stone's song and asks a pertinent question; Roseanne Roseannadanna talks about seeing Jane at the beach; great season-ender for Update.

    Uncle Roy- Roy (Buck) is tied to a chair at his instance while babysitting again. Good second edition

    Franken & Davis Show- Krishna Franken- Franken becomes a Hare Krishna and tries to bring about a new humor, which ultimately fails. As with all the sketches, it works.

    Olympia Café- a fire breaks out at the restaurant and Pete (Belushi) tries to commit insurance fraud; loved the dance at the end. This marks the end of another series of characters and a fine sketch too.

    A teary-eyed Bette Midler performs the Tom Waits ballad "Martha"

    Schiller Reels- Clones Exist Now (film) – Writer Schiller profiles cloning and its new revolutions.

    Not for Transsexuals Only – Ubiquitous talk show host Joan Face (Jane) profiles two post-op transsexuals, male to female (Buck) and female to male (Laraine) and how they are coping; funny chat and loved the ending quip from Joan.

    Michael O'Donoghue as Elvis- O'Donoghue reprises his impression where needles gouge his eyes; funny non-impression as well as the baffled audience who look on as he continues his act falling over throughout the studio during goodnights.

    Season 4 closes out with two cast members leaving Belushi and Aykroyd. They were certainly missed for their enormous contribution from 10/11/75 until 5/26/79. The episode overall was a satisfying close on a great season. 8/10moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • During the "Not for Transsexuals Only" sketch, host Jane Curtin has this to say about a donor: "For our donor's information, or for our viewers' information…"

  • QUOTES (2)

    • Richard Nixon V/O: We'd do anything to crack each other up! And I remember, that day, Dean was on a roll, so I just followed his lead, and.. "played along" with the "joke"...
      John Dean: [ standing over Nixon's desk; a microphone is unseen underneath a small lamp on the desk ] Plus... there's a real problem... in raising money.
      [ Dean holds up handwritten sign: "Let's Pretend There's A Cover Up"; Nixon laughs, removes lampshade to reveal hidden microphone ]
      Uh... Mitchell... Mitchell has been working on raising some money... feeling he's got, you know.. he's one of the ones with the most.. to lose.
      President Richard Nixon: [ covers microphone with hand, tries not to laugh ] Martha!
      ..but.. there is no denying the fact that the White House - Ehrlichman, Haldeman.. [ points to himself ] ..Dean - are all involved in some of the.. early.. money decisions.

      President Richard Nixon: [ stands slightly to speak directly into the microphone ] How much money do they need?

      John Dean: Well.. I would say these people are going to cost, uh.. uh.. [ looks to Nixon for help, who sticks both thumbs in the air to silently cue Dean to pick a high number ] ..a million dollars! Over the next.. two years.

      [ Nixon and Dean pound on the desk to subdue their laughter ]

      President Richard Nixon: We could get that.

      John Dean: [ stifling laughter ] Uh-huh.

      [ Nixon scribbles on a pad, then, laughing silently, holds it up to reveal the message: "Let's Talk In Incomplete Sentences" ]

      President Richard Nixon: Uh.. uh.. You, uh.. on the money.. if you, uh.. need the money, I mean, uh.. you could get the money. Let's say, uh..

      John Dean: Well, I think if we're going to, uh..

      President Richard Nixon: What I meant is, uh.. you could get, uh.. you could get a million dollars. And you could get it in cash.
      [ Dean stick two pencils up his nose, resembling a walrus; Nixon practically falls out of his chair laughing at the sight ]
      I, uh.. I know where it could be gotten!
      John Dean: Uh, huh! [ puts lampshade on his head and dances in a circle, to nixon's amusement ]

    • Buck Henry: I've given a great deal of thought to what television could be: the ultimate medium for the transmission of ideas. A living, vibrant storehouse of the products of our cultural and intellectual activity as a nation. There's something very exciting to me, and I'm sure to all of you as well, in the idea of a great electronic mirror that's held up to society to reflect our activity in politics, science, and the arts. But what has television become? I'll tell you. It's become a gaudy, painted tart, writhing in a wanting, tawdry display of cleavage, bare midriffs and jiggling buttocks, always ready to plumb new depths of moral turpitude in order to please her clients.

  • NOTES (1)


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