If you are curious about the experience, keep reading.
The SNL studio at 30 Rock is much smaller than you’d imagine. I had seen it once before but my friend Katie had not so she was very surprised. Our seats were in the front row of the mezzanine, a great vantage point for all of the maneuvering of the skilled crew between sketches. I desperately wanted to take pics and videos, but alas, that’s forbidden.
Taran Killam came out to warm up the crowd just before rehearsal started. He let us know that we’d see about thirty extra minutes of material while the cast and producers figured out what sketches and bits would make the actual show a few hours later.
Then it was time to get started. They did a cold open with Jay Pharaoh as President Obama apologizing for his failure to explain Obamacare. He got unexpected help from Jesse Pinkman of Breaking Bad.
Needless to say, once I realized that my crush Aaron Paul was actually in-studio, I went somewhat bonkers.
Another highlight included a Girls sketch with Tina as a new friend from Albania named Blerta.
In the end, I broke the rules and got some pics of Aaron Paul saying good night to the cast. Had to be done.
You would have done the same, right?
— Candace Armstrong (@candacearm) September 29, 2013
I got home in time to catch most of the SNL live broadcast. They cut some of the sketches down including an unfortunate bit from Weekend Update featuring Kyle Mooney (that I still didn’t find funny even when abbreviated).
Also cut was a too-long-but-had-potential sketch with Miley Cyrus (Vanessa Bayer) and Robin Thicke (Taran Killam) at the MTV VMAs, and a sight gag about the blondes of Fox News that didn’t get many laughs even with Tina as one of the busty blondes.
Overall Twitter reaction was different from my own which leads me to believe that perhaps the comedy just doesn’t always make it through to our televisions. Bits that were enjoyably funny in person didn’t seem to resonate with the television viewing audience. Twitter also didn’t love Arcade Fire’s performances which in person, I found weird and wonderful.
And yet USA Today got the jokes, for the most part. Recap here.
I have sometimes been critical of SNL on Twitter in spite of having a healthy respect for how hard comedy is to make week after week. Having been there in person, I hope to cut SNL a bit more slack in the future. We’ll see.
Sidebar: Is it creepy if I point out that the crazy talented Tina Fey is also hot? She’s in terrific shape–even more so if you keep in mind that she’s a mother of two. Check out her portraits.