Live From New York: An Uncensored History of Saturday Night Live, as Told By Its Stars, Writers, and Guests by Tom Shales and James Andrew Miller
(Back Bay Books, 2003, 656 pages)
Saturday Night Live is an unique show with an equally unique history. There have been multiple ups and downs for the show that has survived decades through the entertainment late night world. The show has produced multiple stars that have gone on to do bigger things or who hit the high point of their career while on Saturday Night Live. It seems just about everyone in comedy has a story about Saturday Night Live, whether it’s was a failed audition or multiple years on the set. At the head of it all though is Lorne Michaels who has overseen (almost) every year of the show from the very beginning and continues on to today.
I’ve never been an avid viewer of Saturday Night Live but recently I got drawn into a special on TV and that got me curious. Sure I’d seen the popular sketches and knew the vague history. This read, however, went in-depth with the history of the show’s creation, the cast members, the hosts, the writers, the after-parties, and the show’s tragic losses. There were a few times where I wished the authors would hurry it up to get to the next decade, but overall it was an interesting read and I learned a lot about the show and the people behind it.