Monday, May 10, 2010

Betty White, Taylor Swift, Facebook & " rewriting the tired SNL/church hosting formula"

That a Facebook campaign got SNL to invite Betty White to host the show is quite a sign of the times. But SNL, now an "old wineskin" has the chance to prove itself.
A great wake-up call to the established church about how and how not to be relevant.

Interesting article excerpt:

"Betty White, Taylor Swift rewrite tired SNL hosting formula"
Beatweek Magazine

If the powers that be at SNL had known that all it would take to turn around what’s been one of the show’s worst of its thirty-five seasons was to turn over the hosting duties to a woman who’s nearly ninety years old, they likely wouldn’t have waited this far into this painfully unfunny season, which had until now only had one good episode hosted by Taylor Swift back in January, to get around to doing so. Better late than never, however..

It’s perhaps no coincidence that SNL’s only two good episodes this season have come from its oldest-ever host in Betty White and its youngest host of the season in Taylor Swift. Rather than the show being its usual tired proving ground for big name actors who are only doing it because they’ve got a new movie coming out to promote, these were the two instances in which the show took an inspired chance with the hosting slot, first with a twenty year old pop star with no previously demonstrated acting chops, and now with an extremely elderly actress with a history of playing dimwits. In both instances it worked because it was, well, different.

As Saturday Night Live heads into its next season after wrapping up this largely failed one up next week, hopefully the show learns the right lesson from tonight and from the January episode: it’s not merely the fact that Betty White is extremely old that made her episode worth watching, nor was is the fact that Taylor Swift was a very young pop star that made her episode work; it was the fact that those two worked as hosts for precisely the reasons that it seemed on paper that they shouldn’t have. So while SNL will likely attempt to duplicate that success next season by having another young pop star host one episode and another unlikely elderly actor host another, let’s hope that the choices the show makes are inspired ones, and not merely ones that fit the newly crafted formula, which will by then be yet another old and tired one. Having an extremely old person host the show worked last night because on paper it shouldn’t have, and yet your gut told you that with that specific actress, it would anyway. Randomly picking the name of another eighty-eight year old actor out of a hat for hosting duties next year could be disastrous if the choice doesn’t make sense on its own merit.

-Beatweek, link

Sidenote on the Taylor Swift connection, my previous post on "what the church can learn from Taylor Swift" ... for some mysterious reason
Taylor Swift gets non-nude and sloshed on stage and Jesus loves everybody..even those googling for nude Taylor Swift)
periodically sends hits to my blog into viralsphere...

Back to Betty:

Having not seen Saturday Night Live for a few decades, I caught, at 28 seconds in the video, the interesting front row seats that a select few of the studio audience apparently have at SNL . Reminds me of a cheap version of the U2 Heart or oval...or clawthedral.
In Fresno a few years ago, Len Sweet had some great comments on U2's desire to plant the "stage" close to/into the audience as a words to the church...maybe that will show up in his next book.

Clip, with great comments from Betty about Facebook:

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