Our minds on media.

Musings on the effects of media on cognition.

Comedians Find Original Obama Angle

I think SNL had a pretty serious break-through last night (and no, I’m not talking about Poehler’s return, though I adore her). I am talking about the Blue-Note-riff that SNL did on President-elect Obama.

As a comedy writer, you really don’t have to work that hard when your President says things like “I didn’t grow up in the ocean—as a matter of fact—near the ocean—I grew up in the desert. Therefore, it was a pleasant contrast to see the ocean. And I particularly like it when I’m fishing.” And he says things like this so frequently that “Bushism,” has made its way in to common usage in English.

It’s tough to pick on someone who is seriously calculating about what he says and does and good evidence that SNL writers understand that—so make fun of the calculating! Maybe not everyone watching is familiar with the graphics reference in the video, but it’s a direct quote from Blue Note Records and the covers of albums by jazz musicians like Miles Davis. You want to talk about cool?—jazz is where the very word’s origins lie.

Fred Armisen’s imitation of Barrack Obama has been steadily improving. And while this sketch doesn’t top the 3 o’clock in the morning call when “President” Obama loses his cool, you have to give SNL credit.1 They figured out an angle of comedy here that no other comedy writers had thought of—in two years—it shows real creative talent whatever their critics say.

  1. Ironically, this sketch talks about Obama calling Hillary instead of his Secretary of State

« Previously: