Saturday, June 27, 2009

An Open Letter to Lorne Michaels







Dear Lorne,

I was watching an old episode of SNL the other day, one with Maya Rudolph playing Donatella Versace (a classic), and got to thinking about the gender and race of SNL performers. I did a little research.

Of the 35 seasons of SNL and 122 cast members, 31 have been women. And just a mere four have been female minorities. That's pathetic.

Why so few women? You don't seem to subscribe to the belief that women aren't funny. SNL has been home to many top female comedians of this time. Maybe you just don't know enough female comedians. For your sake, let me offer some suggestions.

My Comedian Wish List for SNL:


* Wanda Sykes - A sketch veteren with The Chris Rock Show; granted, she's about to have her own show, so you probably missed the boat.

* Kim Wayans - Wayans has 5 seasons of In Living Color under her belt.

* Christina Anthony - Second City: check.

* Frangela - It's a two for one and in these tough economic times, that's a comic deal! (Granted, they don't really do sketch, but they would be a welcome addition to the lineup. They would make great anchors for Weekend Update!)

* DSI Comedy grads - Bring a little southern charm to SNL! I can vouch for them, I've seen plenty of their shows and my funny bone was tickled without remorse.


*Marina Franklin- Another Chicago gem, also a Last Comic Standing and Chappelle Show alum.

*Melissa Vellasenor- Have you seen this girl's impression reel?

*Garfunkel & Oates - Cooler than sliced bread, with an already large fan base. Large fan base means more viewers, which is really what you want, Lorne. (Oh yeah. I can speak "biz.")

These are just a few suggestions and I know I've left out a lot of people. If you need more women comedians, check out our list on the left-side column of the blog.

Basically, there's really no excuse for the dismal representation of hilarity of the female kind on SNL. You are missing out on a huge demographic and the endless possibilities of new sketches.

Lorne, I know how much you like Kenan Thompson playing Oprah. But don't let it stop you from casting more women. Keep SNL cutting-edge. Feature more ladies.

Yours truly,
Lauren

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