Watch ‘Saturday Night Live’s Tribute to Norm Macdonald
The comedy world was shocked last month with the announcement of the death of Norm Macdonald. Macdonald died after a decade-long battle with leukemia. Worried how his diagnosis would affect his comedy and how he was perceived, Macdonald kept his diagnosis secret from all but his closest friends and family. When Macdonald’s passing was revealed in mid-September, he was only 61 years old.
Norm had a long career in film and television, but he was best known for his tenure on Saturday Night Live in the mid-90s, where he became the anchor of Weekend Update for three and a half years. Although he wasn’t always the most popular host of the segment in his time — in fact, he was fired midway through his fourth season on the job, supposedly at the behest of NBC executives — he is now routinely regarded as one of the best comedians to ever fill the Update seat.
This weekend SNL returned for its 47th season premiere, and its first episode since Macdonald’s death. Fittingly, current Weekend Update anchors Michael Che and Colin Jost turned over the final minutes of the sketch to Norm, reairing some of his funniest jokes as a tribute to the late comic. You can watch the segment below:
This is literally the tiniest fraction of Norm’s tenure on Weekend Update — and frankly, some of the jokes they picked would not have been my choices for his funniest gags. (Also frankly, some of Norm’s funniest bits would not fly on broadcast TV in 2021.) But it’s good the show at least found a way to honor Norm Macdonald. He really was one of the funniest guys on Saturday Night Live ever.