Sunday, February 15, 2015

Singles Awareness Day FEB 15, 2015

thanks for visiting my blog today. my yahoo mail is not allowing me to compose, reply, or forward email .. cant even open my settings. hope tomorrow will be back to normal! diane

DIANE'S CORNER ... Celebrate Singles Awareness Day

For singles, Valentine’s day can be a simple and cruel reminder that they are alone. No pink stuffed animals for them, and no tacky heart-shaped boxes of poor quality chocolate, either, though one does tend to wonder whether that really makes them worse off in the first place.
Singles Awareness Day used to be an alternate name used for Valentine’s Day among those who found themselves unattached during the day, but it all became too depressing. So by single’s hive-mind consensus, it fell to the day after as a perfect antidote to all of the neon nonsense.
It’s a humorous holiday to celebrate being single, to share with single friends, to send each other presents or even order yourself some flowers. On this day many people wear green, as it is the complementary opposite of red. Another popular option is an absence of color (black), to symbolize an absence of celebration. Some who celebrate Singles Awareness Day just want to remind romantic couples that they don’t need to be in a relationship to celebrate life, and that the key to being happy is being able to be happy with yourself.
Contrary to popular misconceptions, Singles Awareness Day is not about self-pity but rather a chance to announce to the world that you are single and happy to be so. 

Word of the Day


Definition:(noun) An event that is experienced as indicating important things to come.
Usage:He refused to think that the rain was a foretoken of gloom for his date that night.

Quick Quiz:

Many politicians try to keep people in the dark about their

 a. successful policies

 b. achievements in government

 c. secret business deals


Galileo Galilei

Galileo was a Tuscan astronomer, philosopher, and physicist whose technological advances and scientific investigations greatly enhanced humanity's knowledge of the universe. Though his work is today considered crucial to the development of the modern scientific method, the Catholic Church of the 17th century tried him for heresy and forced him to abjure his findings.

Kamakura Matsuri (Snow Hut Festival)

Kamakura Matsuri is held in northern Japan in the Akita Prefecture, at the time of year when there is usually deep snow on the ground. In Yokote and other towns of the region, children build Kamakura, snow houses that resemble igloos. They furnish the huts with tatami mats and a wooden altar dedicated to Suijin-sama and have parties in them, while families gather to drink sweet sake and eat rice cakes and fruits. The rice cakes are made in the shape of cranes and turtles, traditional symbols of longevity, and of dogs called inukko, thought to guard against devils.

Indian Prime Minister Opposes Temple in His Honor

Thanks to the donations of hundreds of people in Rajkot, India, a temple has been built in honor of Prime Minister Narendra Modi—and he is reportedly "appalled" by the gesture. The temple features a seated statue of Modi and a wind gauge shaped like a lotus, the symbol of his political party. This week, however, Modi spoke out against the shrine, insisting that such worship goes against Indian tradition. Some of his followers remain undeterred and continue to worship him, while others plan to replace the Modi statue with that of a Hindu god.

1758 - Mustard was advertised for the first time in America.

1842 - Adhesive postage stamps were used for the first time by the City Dispatch Post (Office) in New York City.

1903 - Morris and Rose Michtom, Russian immigrants, introduced the first teddy bear in America. 

1946 - Edith Houghton, at age 33, was signed as a baseball scout by the Philadelphia Phillies becoming the first female scout in the major leagues.

1953 - The first American to win the women’s world figure skating championship was 17-year-old Tenley Albright. 

1985 - The Center for Disease Control reported that more than half of all nine-year-olds in the U.S. showed no sign of tooth decay.

                CANADIAN FLAG

Origin of the Canadian Flag

After the First World War and again after the Second World War, the Government of Canada discussed the importance of our country having its own flag. Attempts to adopt a specific design repeatedly failed as consensus could not be reached.
In 1964, the Government made the creation of a distinctive Canadian flag a priority as the 1967 centennial celebration of Confederation was approaching. When Parliament could not reach agreement on the design, the task of finding a national flag was given to an all-party Parliamentary committee.
The all-party Parliamentary committee with the thousands of different designs submitted for the Canadian Flag.
Photo Cliff Buckman, courtesy Queen's University Archives.
After considering thousands of proposals for flags submitted by Canadians, the committee chose three final designs:
A Red Ensign with the fleur-de-lis and the Union Jack
Three red maple leaves between two blue borders
A red maple leaf on a white square between two red borders
It was the single leaf, red and white design that the Committee recommended to Parliament. The motion was passed to adopt this design as the National Flag of Canada with a vote of 163 to 78 on December 15, 1964.
The winning flag was selected for the following reasons:
  • The simplicity of the design that made it easily recognizable.
  • Its use of Canada’s official national colours.
  • The maple leaf had become a symbol of Canadian pride and national identity.
  • Canadian troops as well as Canadian athletes used the maple leaf as an emblem on their uniforms when representing Canada abroad.

If You Were Born Today, February 15

Your personal magnetism is great, and your need for loving, harmonious, and balanced surroundings perhaps greater. You have a very unique spin on the world and love to share it with others. You are creative and usually good at writing or other expressive arts, and you also have a strong business sense. Forgiving and tolerant, few people so easily accept others for exactly who they are. You are also very perceptive and pick up on all the subtleties of human interaction. Famous people born today: Galileo, Susan B. Anthony, Harvey Korman, Jane Seymour, Matt Groening, Chris Farley.

Picture of jeeps driving through the Bolivian salt desert after the rain

After the Rain

Photograph by Guy Nesher, National Geographic 
“It rained during the second evening of our jeep tour of the Bolivian salt desert,” writes Guy Nesher. “The next day we discovered that the ground had turned into an almost perfect mirror due to a thin layer of water that accumulated on it overnight. It was breathtaking. Initially I tried to shoot the empty desert, but the lack of any distinct features made the photos quite boring. I soon realized that my best bet was the other jeeps traveling beside us.”







crochet, 6 mths - 2 yrs


See how to make this recipe

crockpot recipe

Rocky Road Candy in the CrockPot

Melting chocolate in the crockpot is fool-proof.

Unless you are truly a fool. Then you might be out of luck.

But for us ordinary folk who might be chocolate-melting impaired, nothing can beat melting chocolate in the crockpot.

The Ingredients:

--bag of chocolate chips
--bag of mini marshmallows
--bag of chopped walnuts
--Release foil

The Directions:

--pour whole bag of chocolate chips into stoneware
--turn on high, set timer for 30 minutes to check
--stir chocolate after 30 min, re-set timer 15-30 minutes as needed.

prepare two cookie sheets with Release foil.

when chocolate is all melty, stir in a bunch of marshmallows. I didn't measure how many I dumped in, but I like a lot of marshmallows. I used at least half the bag. Mix with a big spoon and add chopped walnuts (or whatever nuts you prefer).

Remove stoneware from heating element.

Use two spoons and drop mounds of chocolate-marshmallow-nut gooeyness onto the Release foil.

Place cookie sheets into the refrigerator to cool and harden.

Once cool, you can place the candy into those cute little cellophane bags and tie with a pretty ribbon.
Or you can fill your robe pockets and go eat them all in the closet.



CHILDREN'S CORNER .. coloring pages


'Saturday Night Live': All 141 Cast Members Ranked

Let's break it down. The entire cast of Saturday Night Live, all 40 years of it, ranked from top to bottom. Insanely ambitious? You bet. Absurdly exhaustive? No doubt. Ruthlessly complete? Damn straight. From the Samurai Hitman to the poor bastard who played Walter Mondale. Everybody.

So — live from New York — a passionate, definitive, opinionated, subjective, irresponsible and indefensible breakdown of the Not Ready for Prime Time Players. It's a celebration of Lorne Michaels' creation 40 years on — and as everySNL fan knows, part of loving the show means surfing through the lows along with the highs. Keep in mind: We're not ranking their careers, merely their stints on SNL. Also, we're ranking them strictly for what they did onscreen, not behind the scenes. As for who counts as an SNL player, there's a lot of gray area. The whole point of this list is ranking everybody, not just the big names, so it tries to err on the side of being inclusive. "Writers who occasionally showed up in sketches" is a mighty crowded category, but they're ultimately judged by onscreen impact. It's a game of inches out there. And no guest hosts, no matter how often they return. No Alec Baldwin or Andy Kaufman or Justin Timberlake, even though they've had way more airtime than many cast members.
Some of these stories get grim, especially below the Joe Piscopo Line. (You don't want to be on the Cleghorne side of the Piscopo Line.) But these are all comedians who made it to the big leagues. This list is full of worthy performersSNL bumbled, or ugly ducklings who turned into swans elsewhere. So if you were funny in Anchorman 2 or you ended up a legend on Seinfeld, that's sweet, but it doesn't factor in here. The hilariously disastrous misuse of talent is part of what makes it SNL — we wouldn't want it any other way.
Also crucial: If you were an SNL player and your feelings get bruised easily, you might want to stop reading now. Like Stuart Smalley says, it's easier to put on slippers than to carpet the world.

So — live from New York — a passionate, definitive, opinionated, subjective, irresponsible and indefensible breakdown of the Not Ready for Prime Time Players. It's a celebration of Lorne Michaels' creation 40 years on — and as everySNL fan knows, part of loving the show means surfing through the lows along with the highs. Keep in mind: We're not ranking their careers, merely their stints on SNL. Also, we're ranking them strictly for what they did onscreen, not behind the scenes. As for who counts as an SNL player, there's a lot of gray area. The whole point of this list is ranking everybody, not just the big names, so it tries to err on the side of being inclusive. "Writers who occasionally showed up in sketches" is a mighty crowded category, but they're ultimately judged by onscreen impact. It's a game of inches out there. And no guest hosts, no matter how often they return. No Alec Baldwin or Andy Kaufman or Justin Timberlake, even though they've had way more airtime than many cast members.
Some of these stories get grim, especially below the Joe Piscopo Line. (You don't want to be on the Cleghorne side of the Piscopo Line.) But these are all comedians who made it to the big leagues. This list is full of worthy performersSNL bumbled, or ugly ducklings who turned into swans elsewhere. So if you were funny in Anchorman 2 or you ended up a legend on Seinfeld, that's sweet, but it doesn't factor in here. The hilariously disastrous misuse of talent is part of what makes it SNL — we wouldn't want it any other way.
Also crucial: If you were an SNL player and your feelings get bruised easily, you might want to stop reading now. Like Stuart Smalley says, it's easier to put on slippers than to carpet the world.

141. Robert Downey Jr.

robert Downey Jr.
Alan Singer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty
Era: 1985-1986
Robert Downey Jr. is a comic genius. Making him unfunny stands as SNL's most towering achievement in terms of sucking. How do you fuck up a sure thing like Downey? He's funny in anything. I mean, dude was funny in Weird Science.He was funny in Johnny Be Good. He was funny in Iron Man. But he met his Kryptonite, and it was SNL, where he spent the 1985-1986 season sucking up a storm. His greatest hit? A fart-noise debate with Anthony Michael Hall. In a perverse way, the Downey Fail sums up everything that makes SNL great. There are no sure things. No rules. No do-overs. No safety net — when you flop on SNL, you flop big. And that's the way it should be. The cameras roll at 11:30, ready or not. Live from New York — it's Saturday Night.

140. The Muppets

The Muppets
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1975-1976
Strange but true: The Muppets were first-season cast members. But not the funny Muppets — a dark and grumpy version, starring a lizard named Scred. Jim Henson hated the "I'm Scred and you're not" gags. So he left to start The Muppet Show. Too bad — Gonzo and Belushi would have made quite a team.

139. Jim Breuer

Jim Breuer
Edie Baskin
Era: 1995-1998
Like Jay Mohr, except more of a "This asshole again? No, that one" type.

138. Victoria Jackson

Victoria Jackson
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1986-1992
America had six seasons to wonder how the one-joke, baby-talking ninny ate up so much time on SNL, and nobody ever did figure that out. The best thing VJ ever did was show up on the 25th-anniversary special as an audience member and ask, "I was just wondering — whatever happened to me?"

137. Gilbert Gottfried

Gilbert Gottfried
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1981
It's so weird to think that Gottfried was ever young — or that he wasted a year of his youth bombing out on SNL. He wasn't really Gilbert Gottfried yet — he was just a morose-looking hippie kid with a 'fro that seemed to wilt by the minute. The best you can say for his SNL gig is it helped turn him into the bitter madman we know and love today.

136. Colin Quinn

Colin Quinn
Edie Baskin
Era: 1995-2000
All the Remote Control alum needs for his comedy style is to hang out and be himself, yet SNL required him to wear a tie and read cue cards. "Weekend Update" was so spectacularly wrong for his skill
set, especially his hoarser-by-the-minute croak, you barely noticed how hackity-hackity-hack the jokes were. Maybe that was the point.

135. Norm Macdonald

Norm MacDonald
Edie Baskin
Era: 1993-1998
Macdonald clearly thought he was hilarious, and that counts for something — confidence is essential for a "Weekend Update" anchor. Unfortunately, he was just a Dennis Miller clone with no mullet and no jokes. Stare into the camera a little longer, Norm; maybe it'll get funnier.

134. Randy Quaid

Randy Quaid
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1986
Normally you can stick Randy Quaid into anything and make it funnier, but "normally" doesn't mean beans on SNL, especially not that Godforsaken 1985-1986 season. Let's just say, in the immortal words of Cousin Eddie: The shitter was full.

132-133. The One-Offs: Laurie Metcalf & Emily Prager

Laurie Metcalf & Emily Prager
©NBC; ©New Line Cinema/Everett Collection
Era: 1980-1981
Like baseball's Moonlight Graham, they were cast members for one episode — without making it into any of the sketches. Rated leniently for not sucking.

131. Jay Mohr

Jay Mohr
©Walt Disney Television/Everett Collection
Era: 1993-1995
Even in a crowded cast, Mohr still managed to stand out for his amazing "This asshole again?" power. His 2004 book, Gasping for Airtime, was an admirable chronicle of how inept he was on SNL

128-130. The Temps: Matthew Laurance, Patrick Weathers and Yvonne Hudson

Matthew Laurance, Patrick Weathers and Yvonne Hudson
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty;Courtesy of Patrick Weathers;Alan Singer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1981
Bit players in the "Saturday Night Live '80" replacement crew, which is like riding the bench for the Bad News Bears.

127. Charles Rocket

Charles Rocket
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1981
One of the saddest SNL crash-and-burn stories. Rocket had the misfortune to host "Weekend Update" during the doomed "Saturday Night Live '80" season, which meant he took most of the heat. His man-in-the-street "Rocket Report" segments were solid, but his "Update" got hammier and more off-key, and he got fired after saying "Who the fuck did it?" on the air, with a cocky grin on his face. He died tragically in 2005.

126. Tony Rosato

Tony Rosato
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1982
He went from being "the guy nobody noticed on SCTV" to "the guy nobody noticed on SNL," taking over the Joe Piscopo-type role whenever Piscopo needed a bathroom break.

124-125. More '80s Rejects: Dan Vitale and Ben Stiller

Dan Vitale and Ben Stiller
©NBC; ©Edie Baskin/Corbis Outline
Eras: Dan Vitale (1985-1986); Ben Stiller (1988-1989)
Officially cast members for a few weeks in the Eighties. Vitale was forgotten until Marc Maron dug him up for a WTF podcast. Stiller's whereabouts remain unknown.

121-123. Eighties Ladies: Christine Ebersole, Ann Risley and Robin Duke

Christine Ebersole, Ann Risley and Robin Duke
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty (3)
Eras: Christine Ebersole (1981-1982); Ann Risley (1981-1981); Robin Duke (1980-1984)
Talented players who came and went without getting a real chance.

115-120. The Guy-2Ks: Jerry Minor, Rob Riggle, Finesse Mitchell, Jeff Richards, Paul Brittain and Dean Edwards

Jerry Minor, Rob Riggle, Finesse Mitchell, Jeff Richards, Paul Brittain and Dean Edwards
Brad Barket/Getty; Stephen Boitano/Getty (2); Robyn Platzer/FilmMagic; John Lamparski/WireImage; Ron Galella Ltd./WireImage
Eras: Jerry Minor (2000-2001); Rob Riggle (2004-2005); Finesse Mitchell (2003-2006); Jeff Richards (2001-2004); Paul Brittain (2010-2012); Dean Edwards (2001-2003)
So many bros got lost in the shuffle in the 2000s.

114. Damon Wayans

Damon Wayans
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1986
Before he blew up on In Living Color, he added his name to the "Briefly Sucked" files on SNL. Haaaated it!

113. Michael O'Donoghue

Michael O'Donoghue
Edie Baskin
Era: 1975-1979
National Lampoon's evil genius helped define SNL behind the scenes — scripting nihilistic venom for Chevy Chase was like Robert Towne writing for Jack Nicholson. But he was no performer, so his onscreen "Mr. Mike" schtick — bearded stiff poses as a decadent dandy — has dated badly. And, sorry, but it's hard to take his "comedy is a baby-seal hunt" routine when you're looking right at that poignant cry-for-help baby seal of a comb-over.

112. Anthony Michael Hall

Anthony Michael Hall
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1986
What a career of crazy highs and tremendous lows. What other actor on Earth could play Bill Gates, Whitey Ford and Mutt Lange? Going from The Breakfast Club to SNL probably seemed like graduation, but it was more like a year of detention.

111. Siobhan Fallon

Siobhan Fallon
Ron Galella Ltd./WireImage
Era: 1991-1992
In her sole season, she snagged a three-second close-up in the credits — times 20 episodes, that's a solid minute, which must've been 90 percent of her screen time. Went on to play Björk's prison guard in a Lars von Trier film, proving anything is possible.

105-110. The Nineties One-Shots: Nancy Walls, David Koechner, Laura Kightlinger, Morwenna Banks, Fred Wolf and Melanie Hutsell

Nancy Walls, David Koechner, Laura Kightlinger, Morwenna Banks, Fred Wolf and Melanie Hutsell
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty; ©NBC/Everett Collection; Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty; ©NBC (2); NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Eras: Nancy Walls (1995-1996); David Koechner (1995-1996); Laura Kightlinger (1994-1995); Morwenna Banks (1994-1995); Fred Wolf (1995-1997); Melanie Hutsell (1991-1994)
Mostly bit players trapped in the god-awful years after the big Myers/Hartman/Sandler exodus. The SNL equivalent of Marcy Playground or the Primitive Radio Gods.

104. Mark McKinney

Mark McKinney
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1994-1997
Another comedy star with his own . . . look, people. You're already famous. So stay the hell away from "SNL." It's a homeless shelter, not a spa. It's for lonesome newbies who have no other hope. The Billy Crystal Scenario happened exactly once. You're so welcome!

103. Chris Elliott

Chris Elliott
©Columba Pictures/Everett Collection
Era: 1994-1995
Another comedy star with his own thriving career joins the cast of . . . wait, what the fuck was wrong with these people? They never heard of Randy Quaid?

102. Janeane Garofalo

Janeane Garofalo
© Jonathan Alcorn/ZUMA Press
Era: 1994-1995
A comedy star with her own thriving career joins the cast of SNL. What could go wrong?

101. Sarah Silverman

Sarah Silverman
Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1993-1994
Yeah, no surprise SNL had no clue what to do with her — she barely appeared in her entire season. For years afterward, she went abysmally wasted in Hollywood until finally she got famous by writing her own show, Jesus Is Magic,flaunting her distinctive "I was raped by a doctor, which is a bittersweet experience for a Jewish girl" humor. Best SNL rebound of all time!

100. Danitra Vance

Danitra Vance
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1986
SNL's long history of failing to do right by black women begins here. (Well, it probably begins with Garrett Morris as Tina Turner.) Vance got such shoddy treatment from the writers it became a joke in itself when she sang the Barry Manilow parody "I Play the Maids." She died in 1994.

99. George Coe

Georgoe Coe
Era: 1975-1976
The token old guy in the original cast, left behind when Michaels figured out it was funnier to dress young guys as old guys.

98. Bobby Moynihan

Bobby Moynihan
Dana Edleson/NBC
Era: 2008-present
He's an uncle and he's drunk. Got it. Saving grace: His brilliant Chris Christie imitation.

97. Gary Kroeger

Gary Kroeger
Fred Hermansky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1982-1985
Well, somebody had to play Walter Mondale. Kroeger's other highlight: Donny Osmond to Louis-Dreyfus' Marie, as they sang a duet that turned into a full-on make-out session.

96. Brian Doyle-Murray

Brian Doyle-Murray
Alan Singer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1979-1982
More of a writer than a performer, Bill's big brother was still years away from his most memorable screen turn, in Wayne's World. ("He blows goats. I have proof.")

94-95. The Zimmermans: Cheri Oteri and Chris Kattan

Cheri Oteri and Chris Kattan
Edie Baskin
Eras: Cheri Oteri (1995-2000); Chris Kattan (1996-2003)
These two go together somehow, since they made a perfect couple as the Zimmermans. The ultimate theater kids, always trying so goddamn hard. They get full marks for originality — they were fearless in their pursuit of quirky characters. But they sure did repeat themselves (that Mango! those cheerleaders!), and they were incapable of dialing it down a notch, so once you got sick of them, you never went back to being un-sick.

93. Joan Cusack

Joan Cusack
Edie Baskin
Era: 1985-1986
Future Academy Award-nominated star in "year wasted not getting any love from SNL" shocker!

81-92: The New Kids

Noel Wells  Beck Bennett  Tim Robinson Michael Che  Mike O'Brien Kyle Mooney  Leslie Jones  Colin Jost John Milhiser Sasheer Zamata  Pete Davidson  Aidy Bryant
Dana Edelson/NBC (8); Mary Ellen Matthews/NBC (4)
Eras: Noël Wells (2013-2014); Beck Bennett (2013-present); Tim Robinson (2012-2013); Michael Che (2014-present); Mike O'Brien (2013-2014); Kyle Mooney (2013-present); Leslie Jones (2014-present); Colin Jost (2014-present); John Milhiser (2013-2014); Sasheer Zamata (2014-present); Pete Davidson (2014-present); Aidy Bryant (2012-present)
The 2012-2015 rookies are a huge pileup of nervous kids, thrown into the cast and basically auditioning on the air. It's SNL as a reality-show competition, where the prize is a gig at SNL. It'd be mean and unfair to rate them at this point, particularly since most would have to set themselves on fire to get onscreen. (A few are gone already.) Best of luck, gang. Remember, bombing on SNL is often the dawn of a beautiful career.

80. Abby Elliott

Abby Elliott
Amy Sussman/Getty
Era: 2008-2012
The first player to be the daughter of an ex-player, Chris Elliott, and the granddaughter of a guest, Bob Elliott of the legendary radio duo Bob and Ray. Damn good Sarah McLachlan impression.

79. A. Whitney Brown

A. Whitney Brown
Era: 1986-1991
He did proto-Daily Show commentary during the Dennis Miller-era "Update," and later ended up on the beta Daily Show during the Craig Kilborn years.

77-78. Untapped Talent: Michael McKean & Harry Shearer

Michael McKean,  Harry Shearer
Eras: Michael McKean (1994-1995); Harry Shearer (1979-1980, 1984-1985)
Just filling in the Spinal Tap bingo card — neither David St. Hubbins nor Derek Smalls ever found his Stonehenge at 30 Rock.

76. Julia Sweeney

Julia Sweeney
Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage
Era: 1990-1994
Sweeney spent most of her time playing Pat — a sniffling, allegedly androgynous cretin — which was bad news for her and worse news for the rest of us. It's hard to think of a more universally dreaded recurring SNL character. (Pat was so feared by 1992 that it took only one cameo in a video for then-hot band Ugly Kid Joe to kill their career.)

75. Jenny Slate

Jenny Slate
Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection
Era: 2009-2010
SNL is already a footnote in her story — her superb film Obvious Child dropped last year to wide acclaim. She had a rough first night — in a sketch where she said "frickin' " over and over (maybe not the smartest idea to toss at a rookie), she slipped and said "fuckin'." Seth Meyers gallantly put his arm around her for the "good nights," but it was her only season.

74. Gail Matthius

Gail Matthius
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1981
A flicker of hope in the "Saturday Night Live '80" debacle, with a sharp Valley Girl mall-chick character named Vickie. Matthius and Vickie both deserved better.

73. Brooks Wheelan

Brooks Whelan
Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2013-2014
Raised 10 bonus notches for his Twitter joke when he got the ax: "Fired from New York, it's Saturday night!"

72. Jim Belushi

Jim Belushi
Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1983-1985
Consistent mediocrity is rare on SNL — it eventually crosses the line into "grudgingly good" or "mega-irritating." He might have been SNL's most reliable mediocrity, and as such he should be honored. He peaked as a blowhard bigot interviewing Louis-Dreyfus about Jewish culture in the talk show "Know Your Neighbor" ("Suppose my gas gauge is on empty, but I make it 40 miles to the Exxon station — can I get an eight-day holiday for that?") — a high point for both of them.

71. Casey Wilson

Casey Wilson
Rob Rich/Everett Collection
Era: 2008-2009
A brief SNL pit stop on her way to deserved stardom in Happy Endings and Marry Me. Who could forget her paralyzed stripper, Dusty Velvet? That sketch alone earns Wilson a spot north of the Jim Belushi Canyon.

70. Rich Hall

Rich Hall
Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1984-1985
Imported to do "Update" from his own HBO show, Not Necessarily the News, which suited him better.

69. Ellen Cleghorne

Ellen Cleghorne
Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage
Era: 1991-1995
The only black woman in the 1990s cast, except — what a shocker — she never got any substantial roles to play. Her Queen Shaniqua talk show wasn't enough to get her over. After SNL, she moved on to star in her own WB sitcom, the well-titled but ultimately doomed Cleghorne! And yet it seems appropriate that Cleghorne appeared in the opening credits on the sidewalk, trying to hail a taxi that never arrived.

68. Michaela Watkins

Michaela Watkins
© Dziekan/Retna Ltd./Corbis
Era: 2008-2009
She didn't stay long, but she made an impression as celebrity blogger Angie Tempura from

67. Brad Hall

Brad Hall
Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1982-1984
The finest Pete Best impression in SNL history. Always likable as the superpreppy "Update" news anchor, Hall has been married to Julia Louis-Dreyfus since 1987, which (1) earns him the Golden Sponge lifetime achievement award, and (2) must hold the record as SNL's all-time least-catastrophic romance.

66. Joe Piscopo

Joe Piscopo
Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1984
The second banana to Eddie Murphy, which is like being the second-most-famous dude in the Jimi Hendrix Experience. The Sinatra "I Love Rock 'N Roll" medley sure holds up, though.

64-65. The Two Nancys: Terry Sweeney and Mary Gross

Terry Sweeney, Mary Gross
Edie Baskin; Alan Singer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Eras: Terry Sweeney (1985-1986); Mary Gross (1981-1985)
SNL's twin Nancy Reagans. Sweeney, the first out cast member, had an abrasive edge that sometimes hit the mark, and Gross was more polished — she also shone as Alfalfa and (especially) Mary Tyler Moore. Both were years ahead of their time.

63. Tom Davis

Tom Davis
Edie Baskin
Era: 1977-1980
The mellower half of Franken and Davis — his perpetual college-stoner boyishness was a key part of the early show's identity. He always looked like one of the kids in the audience. He also did a killer Keith Richards imitation. Before he died of cancer in 2012, he wrote one of the best SNL memoirs, the excellently titled 39 Years of Short-Term Memory Loss.

62. Beth Cahill

Beth Cahill
Raymond Bonar/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1991-1992
SNL really blew it letting this firecracker get away. Cahill had a few show-stealing turns as Denise Swerski, Miss Southside of Chicago and daughter of George Wendt in the Bears "Superfan" skits. ("She's got a real Mrs. Ditka quality!") Whenever Cahill appeared, people asked, "Who the hell is she? And when is she coming back?" But she barely ever did, because (1) Victoria Jackson got all the blond-bimbo roles, and (2) SNL had nothing else for women to do.

61. Garrett Morris

Garrett Morris
Edie Baskin
Era: 1975-1980
Nobody has explained how Morris landed in the original cast — he was a Juilliard-trained theater guy, no comedian. He had trouble remembering lines, sometimes blanking out mid-sketch. And he had to act out the writers' hateful racist gimmicks. Baseball was berry good to him; comedy not so much.

60. Nora Dunn

Nora Dunn
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1990
She had two specialties: hosting parody talk shows (particularly as former model Pat Stevens) and teaming up with Jan Hooks as the singing Sweeney Sisters. Their show-tune medleys were the kind of risky, cultish ladies'-night humor that could thrive on SNL in the transitional late 1980s, when Michaels returned and the franchise began its slow resurgence — just because nobody was watching and stakes were low.

59. Kevin Nealon

Kevin Nealan
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1986-1995
He got in way over his head when he took over "Weekend Update" ("I'm Kevin Nealon, and that's news to me"), but otherwise he remained a dependable support player — especially as Tarzan to Lovitz's Tonto and Hartman's Frankenstein on "Succinctly Speaking."

58. Horatio Sanz

Horatio Sanz
Mary Ellen Matthews/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1998-2006
Sanz always had that "contest winner" quality — he looked like any random doofus from the audience who won a prize and got to climb onstage. He'll always be fondly remembered as one of the dorm slobs in "Jarret's Room," showing off his bong to the 2001: A Space Odyssey theme: "Bong, bong, bong . . . BIG bong."

57. Denny Dillon

Denny Dillon
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1981
The hidden gem of the doomed "Saturday Night Live '80" replacement cast. Dillon had a great recurring bit as middle-aged yenta Pinky Waxman, hosting a talk show with her hubby, Leo (Gilbert Gottfried!). Was Pinky the first Jewish lady to say "Who knew?" on TV? Probably. Otherwise, Dillon got stuck in some of SNL's worst sketches, most infamously the "Leather Weather Report," where she's a dominatrix meteorologist flogging Charles Rocket, who's strapped to a weather map of America.

56. Paul Shaffer

Paul Shaffer
Era: 1975-1980
Before he tickled America's ivories every night with Letterman, he was SNL's swami of showbiz smarm. He was also the first cast member to drop an accidental f-bomb — in a sketch based on a Troggs bootleg — although few caught it.

55. Jay Pharoah

Jay Pharoah
Dana Edelson/NBC
Era: 2010-present
The Jimmy Fallon of 2 Chainz impressions.

54. Lorne Michaels

Lorne Michaels
Era: 1975-1980; 1985-present
Mysteriously, there's no "Best of Lorne Michaels" DVD compilation. But the boss is always a welcome presence whenever he shows up, and there aren't many performers (or bosses) you can say that about over the course of a 40-year run. He wrote himself one of the debut season's defining moments, offering the Beatles a check ("three thousand dollars!") to reunite. He had no idea Lennon and McCartney were watching together at the Dakota.

53. Tracy Morgan

Tracy Morgan
Edie Baskin
Era: 1996-2003
So much funnier on 30 Rock. In fact, he was so great on 30 Rock, his SNL stint now looks like one long setup.

52. Will Forte

Will Forte
Stephen Lovekin/Getty
Era: 2002-2010
It was always way too easy to take this laid-back gent for granted, especially after several dozen "MacGruber"s, but his spluttering hysteria in the "Potato Chip" sketch — a NASA recruiter who cherishes all 35 of the chips on his desk — came from a dark and special place.

51. Pamela Stephenson

Pamela Stephenson
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1984-1985
A bright spot in a weak season, she came from Auckland via London, serving as a New Wave ambassador with imitations of Billy Idol and Cyndi Lauper. Much of Stephenson's humor involved her breasts; she quit showbiz to become a sex psychologist.

50. Nasim Pedrad

Nasim Pedrad
Gary Gershoff/WireImage
Era: 2009-2014
Always hovering below the radar, but a versatile threat with a knack for portraying creepy kids: "I am all about candy. And if all I have to do to get said candy is hang out in a van, I am now all about vans!"

49. Darrell Hammond

David Hammond
Edie Baskin
Era: 1995-2009
The longest-running cast member (14 seasons!), entirely because of his workmanlike facility with celeb impersonations. He did a pretty good Bill Clinton – but who didn't? Hammond's best (and most original) bit was his Sean Connery, whose pomposity might have helped inspire Ron Burgundy. ("Damn you and your daily doubles, you brigand!") He's back this season to replace Pardo.

48. Tim Meadows

Tim Meadows
Edie Baskin
Era: 1991-2000
Whenever a former cast member came back to host, they'd make a joke about how Meadows was still around. Because he always was — he hung around for 10 seasons. Give the man credit: He waited out some lean years, took every crummy part in every crummy sketch he could get, and finally found his niche as the Ladies' Man: "I got my Courvoisier right here."

47. Jane Curtin

Jane Curtin
Edie Baskin
Era: 1975-1980
Curtin basically invented the role of the "disgruntled SNL player who makes no attempt to hide that she'd rather be anywhere else on the planet right now." There's always a few of those — hell, some seasons it's the entire cast. But for five years on SNL she had a thankless role — the token square surrounded by crazies — and her specialty was making it look really thankless.

46. Kenan Thompson

Kenan Thomas
Peter Kramer/Getty
Era: 2003-present
Twelve seasons and counting. True, he often might have seemed more at home on Nickelodeon, where he originated, but he killed as the "Alex Tre-Black" host of "Black Jeopardy!," with his verdict on Justin Bieber ("He ain't grow") and Robin Thicke ("Had that been me? I'd still be hittin' that").

45. Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Julia Louis-Dreyfus
Fred Hermansky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1982-1985
Like Chris Rock, she stood out from the pack even in this early phase — a virtuoso wiggler and eye-roller. In the early Eighties, she was SNL's answer to Martha Quinn. In fact, some of us started watching Seinfeld because it was the Julia Louis-Dreyfus comeback show.

44. Rob Schneider

Rob Schneider
Kimberly Butler/The Life Images Collection/Getty
Era: 1990-1994
"Cheeburger cheeburger," my ass — the all-time great Greek-diner gag is the one where Schneider says, "You like-a da juice, eh? Da juice is good?" He knew how to take one stupid not-even-a-real-joke and beat it until it bleeds. He proved that as the Richmeister, who was hilarious the first hundred or so times.

43. Vanessa Bayer

Vanessa Bayer
Dana Edelson/NBC
Era: 2010-present
In a congested cast where faces get lost in the crowd — who can forget the game show "New Cast Member or Arcade Fire?" — Bayer always manages to stand out. Her ex-porn star commercials never get old: "With a watch, you'll never have to stop a stranger on the street to ask him, 'Are you my dad?' "

42. Don Novello

Don Novello
Fred Hermansky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1978-1980; 1985-1986
Although primarily a writer, he knocked it out of the park as Father Guido Sarducci — the rock critic for the Vatican newspaper, chain-smoking through homilies about the Last Brunch. The ultimate hip priest, Father Guido might have been the inspiration for Pope Francis.

41. Taran Killam

Taran Killam
John Lamparski/WireImage
Era: 2010-present
His stock is still rising — the past few seasons would have been dreary without him. His 1860s newspaper critic Jebidiah Atkinson gives scathing reviews to everything from Lincoln's "Gettysburg Address" ("Four snores and seven yawns ago") to A Charlie Brown Christmas: "No one wants to watch neurotic children trudging in the snow to smooth jazz." Amen. Not one of SNL's countless Jesus jokes can hang with Jebidiah's review of the Bible's nativity story. "Let's see — a guy travels across the country with his family to find out the hotel is closed? I liked it more when it was called National Lampoon's Vacation."

40. Molly Shannon

Molly Shannon
Edie Baskin
Era: 1995-2001
Docked a dozen or so notches for Mary Katherine Gallagher — the most dreaded recurring character since Julia Sweeney donned the Pat wig. But Shannon stood out in nearly everything else she did. She was a welcome sign of life, keeping the faith through some of SNL's most feeble seasons. Especially as the other half of "Delicious Dish" — there's something so sad in the way she confesses to spicing up her soda water with a little ice. "Actually, I don't know if you've noticed: There are many different kinds of ice." And something so disturbing in her Angelina Jolie impression: "I am so in love with you right now!"

39. Cecily Strong

Cecily Strong
Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2012-present
Bring her back to "Update," OK? Dropping her to keep Colin Jost was a lose-lose move. Her greatest hit: "One time I got banged in the Statue of Liberty's head. I felt like I was hearing all of America's thoughts. And America was thinking, 'More Manual Blondicks, si-vous-please!'"

38. Don Pardo

Don Pardo
Al Levine/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1975-1981; 1982-2014
Oh, Don Pardo — you beautiful, velvet-voiced, credits-announcing, "Weird Al" cameo-making, old-school showbiz-evoking bastard. We never saw your face, yet we loved every word you said. R.I.P.

37. Kate McKinnon

Kate McKinnon
Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2012-present
The brightest light in recent years. Her cop show with Aidy Bryant, Dyke and Fats, needs a spinoff movie. It takes a sick enthusiasm to bring off her vicious portrayal of starving Russian peasant Olya Povlatsky: "Our only exports are homophobia and snow."

36. Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon
Dimitrios Kambouris/WireImage
Era: 1998-2004
The Tonight Show is where Fallon was always meant to be — sketch comedy was never his métier, especially since he never shed his rookie habit of snickering on camera. But he killed with his lovingly detailed rock-star impersonations, from "The Barry Gibb Talk Show" to his Guinness-swilling Van Morrison.

35. Chris Parnell

Chris Parnell
Mark Mainz/Getty
Era: 1998-2006
Never a show pony, but a workhorse. Next time you watch the "more cowbell" sketch, keep your eye on Parnell. Without his deadpan ballast, it's just Christopher Walken reading cue cards at four giggly boys. Dude did a lot of that, which is why he went on to greatness on 30 Rock and Archer.

34. Dennis Miller

Dennis Miller
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1991
The Eighties, man — Elton John married a woman and Dennis Miller was funny. It'll be tough explaining either fact to future generations. But let history record that when the Berlin Wall came down, Miller had the right cheap smirk at the right time, comparing the event to "Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis getting back together. I haven't really enjoyed any of their previous collaborations, and I'm not sure I need to see their new stuff."

33. Ana Gasteyer

Ana Gasteyer
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1996-2002
The host of NPR's "Delicious Dish" ("Schweddy Balls") carved out her own distinct niche — "Rob Schneider except taller and funnier and female" doesn't quite cover it — and she could get laughs with a nasty look. Her "Martha Stewart celebrates St. Patrick's Day" sketch is to die for, especially the way Stewart utters the words "You must be Irish, because my penis is Dublin."

32. Tim Kazurinsky

Tim Kazurinsky
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1981-1984
One of the most under-appreciated players ever, from the much-scorned early-Eighties cast. The Kaz had a virtuoso collection of nervous twitches, especially as sweaty little Dr. Jack Badofsky, the absolute master of terrible puns. It was a treat to hear the audience boo and groan whenever Dr. Jack lectured on diseases like influenza — if you catch it from the Mississippi River, you've got "Huckleberry Finn-fluenza," if "you sneeze your head off, that's Anne Boleyn-fluenza," while "coal miners' daughters are susceptible to Loretta Lynn-fluenza." Or gonorrhea: "If the New York Post finds out you've got it, everyone in the city's gono-rrhead all about it!"

29-31. The Ringers: Martin Short, Billy Crystal and Christopher Guest

Martin Short, Billy Crystal and Christopher Guest
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty (3)
Era: 1984-1985
SNL took the Steinbrenner approach of bringing in these three free agents as hired guns — they walked in and took over the team for a year. Crystal finally became a superstar with his Fernando bit and his "I hate when that happens" routine with Guest. Short reprised some of his broader SCTV bits. It wasn't a career peak for any of them, but it kept a weak franchise ticking for one last season, before Michaels ended his five-year absence.

28. Seth Meyers

Seth Myers
Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2001-2014
The longest-serving "Update" host — and the most tactful at walking a fine line between wiseass and well-mannered. His trademark niceness was never a drawback — it served him well in terms of schmoozing with guest commentators, which Meyers did better than any "Update" guy ever. He unleashed his bitchy side in the "Really?!?" segments with Poehler, whether he was ranting about birth-control laws or the Keebler elves' drug habit.

27. David Spade

David Spade
Edie Baskin
Era: 1990-1996
Spade invented the "Hey, Jackson Browne — 1973 called, they want their hair back" joke template. He doesn't get enough credit for that. He puttered in the background for years, waving good night every week with that "maybe next time" sad-puppy look, before he found greatness with his "Hollywood Minute" segment. So bitchy and (the key) so pointless. Best and meanest line: "Aaaaw, Ric Ocasek — why the long face?"

26. Jan Hooks

Jan Hooks
Edie Baskin
Era: 1986-1991
One of the virtuosos — Hooks could play 18th-century aristocrats (on "Tales of Ribaldry") or a truck-stop waitress canoodling with Willie Nelson. It was rare in the 1980s to see a Southern woman on TV played by an authentic Southern woman, which is only one of the reasons the world grieved when Hooks died last fall. One fondly remembered moment: her sincere wince of pain during the "good nights" when Christopher Walken announced Atlanta had just lost the 1992 World Series. Sing on, Candy Sweeney.

25. Jason Sudeikis

Jason Sudeikis
Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2005-2013
The only devil who could rival Lovitz, mostly because Sudeikis turned the devil into such a regular guy. Sudeikis was the cornfed sports dude who seemed affable on the surface, playing lots of husbands and dads. But it didn't take much to unlock his freaky side — the metalhead in Jon Bovi, Mr. A-Hole, the dancer in the red tracksuit or his unhinged Joe Biden.

24. Laraine Newman

Laraine Newman
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1975-1980
The most underrated member of the original cast. As the California girl of the bunch, not to mention the second-youngest (after Aykroyd), she now seems ahead of her time — from her pioneering Valley Girl (probably the first time "bitchin' bod" was uttered on national TV) to her oft-disturbing vampire-chick goth characters. Her most brilliant moment: playing Manson girl Squeaky Fromme in an ad for potholders made of human hair — Newman stares a hole in the camera as she commands, "You better buy them, you little piggies. I'm not kidding." It was terrifying, and not in a cute way.

23. Fred Armisen

Fred Armisen
Dana Edelsson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2002-2013
Should you dock Armisen points for being even more brilliant on Portlandia? Nah. Only Armisen could thrive so long on SNL in so many different kinds of roles while retaining his own punk-drummer weirdness. Who else could play both Lou Reed and Liberace?

22. Andy Samberg

Andy Samberg
Vera Anderson/WireImage
Era: 2005-2012
"Lazy Sunday" basically invented YouTube — most people in 2005 found out the site existed by frantically clicking around trying to rewatch Samberg and Chris Parnell mack on cupcakes. (Ironic, given how SNL is stricter than Prince when it comes to policing YouTube.) Despite Samberg's boyish energy, he had real staying power — let's just say the list of stars who were funny on SNL and then went on to star in funny sitcoms is a very short list, and Samberg is near the top.

21. Chris Rock

Chris Rock
The Life Picture Collection/Getty
Era: 1990-1993
Rock always had a hard time getting on the air — there was a classic In Living Color sketch about Rock getting thrown out by NBC security who refuse to believe he's a cast member. But make no mistake: Even back then, Rock was hungrier and faster than anyone else. Whenever he got a sketch (barely once a month, usually in the final 15 minutes), he blew the rest of the episode away, with his militant Nat X ("What's the matter, Whitney — you can't get a black bodyguard?") or his B-boy Onski from "I'm Chillin'." Nobody in the history of the show inspired more Monday-morning "Who the hell was that guy?" conversations. If he never worked a day after SNL, we'd all still know his name.

20. Al Franken

Al Franken
Edie Baskin
Era: 1975-1980; 1985-1995
What a country — the punk who wrote the "Roman Vomitorium" sketch is now a senator from Minnesota. (Alas, not alongside the late, great Sen. John Blutarsky.) Franken had two totally distinct runs on SNL. In the Seventies, he and partner Tom Davis were the gangly goofballs who resembled the kids in the audience, the ones Belushi dismissed as "the angel-dust crowd." Then he surprised everyone by coming back in the Nineties as self-help guru Stuart Smalley, one of SNL's most beloved and original recurring characters, at a time when 12-step-speak was still very much in the closet.
Greatest hit: Stuart Smalley meets Michael Jordan (he calls him Michael J., to protect his anonymity) and tells him, "Denial ain't just a river in Egypt."

19. Jon Lovitz

Jon Lovitz
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1985-1990
During the final credits of the horrific 1985-1986 season, Michaels watches as Yankees manager Billy Martin sets fire to the dressing room. The only cast member Michaels pulls from the room is Lovitz. Good move. Lovitz didn't have the widest range, but he didn't need one – he knew exactly what he was good at: playing slimeballs, from his Master Thespian to his "yeah, that's the ticket" liar to the bewigged perv from "Tales of Ribaldry." Lovitz had the creepiest eyebrows in SNL history. Acting!
Greatest hit: Mephistopheles goes on The People's Court so he can command the viewers at home to worship him.

18. Maya Rudolph

Maya Rudolph
Jamie McCarthy/WireImage
Era: 2000-2007
Rudolph was always dauntingly versatile, yet loose and cool. She was the only comedian worthy of doing Beyoncé, back in the Destiny's Child days — Britannica from Gemini's Twin was a cartoon diva, but also a real-thing diva. Rudolph did finely shaded characters but could also aim for the cheap seats with her over-the-top Donatella Versace tantrums. Cue the rampage music.
Greatest hit: Her Donatella children's specials remain the stuff of nightmares. What could be more terrifying than Donatella singing kiddie songs? ("Imagine all the happy children when they hear me and John Galliano sing that tired-ass teapot song!")

17. Adam Sandler

Adam Sandler
Ron Galella Ltd./WireImage
Era: 1990-1995
The ultimate "love him or hate him" guy. Sorry — Operaman alone would make him rank high on this list. Sandler was the first to get a Boston-Irish accent right on national TV ("Get into the faaah left lane, then take the Mass Pike west and you'll see a wicked-huge Radio Shack"), which made him a local hero, even if it set off a very unfortunate comedy trend. Weirdly forgotten historical footnote: Everybody assumed Sandler was gay, because his first memorable bit was about coming out to his family on Thanksgiving. That made him seem edgier than he turned out to be.
Greatest hit: "The Chanukah Song," a major cultural event. Seriously, nobody had any idea Shatner was Jewish.

16. Rachel Dratch

Rachel Dratch
Carlo Allegri/Getty
Era: 1999-2006
If you tuned in to SNL on May 1st, 2004, you saw Dratch as Harry Potter, quaking under the spell of Lindsay Lohan's cleavage — then, a few minutes later, as Debbie Downer at Disney World. One of the best nights any SNL player has ever had. Dratch had no ego — just the will to try anything. Her Sheldon on "Wake Up Wakefield!" was an agonizing portrayal of adolescent overtrying, and only Dratch could make it so soulfully funny.
Greatest hit: Debbie Downer was unstoppable, kind of like feline AIDS. Which is the number-one killer of domestic cats!

15. Chris Farley

Chris Farley
Edie Baskin
Era: 1990-1995
Reach for a bottle of Schmitts Gay and pour some on the floor for this guy. Farley made his act look like impulsive slapstick, but all you have to do is look at all the failed Farley imitators to see how intricate it was. For all his Chippendales antics, he had an easily overlooked finesse, especially when he was playing uptight mansplainers — like the strangely poignant "Medieval Scalders" sketch, where he mentors his son Macaulay Culkin: "You'd be surprised how many different things you can heat up and pour
on people."
Greatest hit: "Matt Foley, Motivational Speaker" — "You're gonna be doing a lot of doobie rolling when you're living in a van down by the river!"

14. Kristen Wiig

Kristen Wiig
John Lamparski/WireImage
Era: 2005-2012
One of a kind. You could argue she ran too many characters into the ground — Gilly again? — but she had a knack for high-strung basket cases, from her flirting expert Rebecca Larue ("I'm just really hearing you") to "Cougar Den" host Toni Ward. When Lana Del Rey showed up, she seemed like a real-life Kristen Wiig character. Wiig got the most sentimental send-off of any cast member ever, complete with Mick Jagger singing "She's a Rainbow," and she earned it.
Greatest hit: Mindy Grayson, a washed-out theater queen who still dreams of her Broadway glory in smash failures like And Sarah Made a Sound ("the story of a mute girl who desperately wanted to say the word 'jazz' ") and Sassy Slacks of 1963.

13. Bill Hader

Bill Hader
Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 2005-2013
The unquestioned MVP by his last few seasons — a master shape-shifter who put real humanity into his characters. His weaselly newscaster Herb Welch or club kid Stefon would have fallen flat without Hader's affectionate touch. He was the most crucial utility player since Hartman — a glue guy who never needed to be the center of attention, just serving any kind of role.
Greatest hit: Stefon raves about New York's hottest clubs ("Built from the bucket list of a dying pervert, this Battery Park bitch parade is now managed by overweight game-show host Fat Sajak") and promotes a fundraiser for Doctors Without Boners.

12. Will Ferrell

Will Ferrell
Edie Baskin
Era: 1995-2002
Ferrell's SNL strategy was basically the opposite of Chevy Chase's: Stick around for years, make your mark as a team player, make everyone around you funnier, and (this is the really weird part) get a hundred times funnier after you leave. Indeed, the hardest thing about appreciating Ferrell's SNL tenure is that none of us knew the glories of Anchorman and Talladega Nights were yet to come. Great Odin's raven!
Greatest hit: Banging the cowbell to "(Don't Fear) The Reaper," his beard and belly jiggling to the music.

11. Dana Carvey

Dana Carvey
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1986-1993
Carvey was the greatest impersonations guy in SNL history — his impressions were usually darker and more compelling characters than the originals. His Ross Perot was way more than a parody of a politician — Carvey turned the character into an American archetype worthy of Randy Newman, sneering "Here's the deal, see" in the voice of every boss or principal you ever despised. When people try to imitate Johnny Carson or George H.W. Bush (or Lorne Michaels), they're usually just doing Carvey's impression.
Greatest hit: Perot behind the wheel, taking Phil Hartman's Admiral Stockdale for a final joyride. "That was world-class."

10. Chevy Chase

Chevy Chase
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1975-1977
Strange as it sounds, Chase might be the most under-rated SNL player. True, he stuck around for only one full season, but so did Farrah on Charlie's Angels — it took him only one season to define the franchise. Of all the original cast members, Chase was the one guy who got how TV worked — the others were theater types. So if you check out the first episode, which is 80 percent unwatchable, Chase is the only one who knows how to stare right into the camera without flinching. He looks like a coldhearted bastard surrounded by a bunch of needy kids. But without that deadpan arrogance, the whole SNL style of humor would fall flat. (By the 12th episode, his castmates are doing jokes about how much they all hate him.) He was famous for his stumbling Gerald Ford impersonation, but he was even sharper and more merciless as Ronald Reagan, the only killer Reagan SNL ever had. Alternate-history question: If Chase had stayed on SNL, would he have sunk Reagan the way he sank Ford?
Greatest hit: Chase reports an item about the Peanuts bird Woodstock. He's getting replaced by "a bird named Altamont, who will beat the other birds to death with a pool cue." The audience gasps. They're horrified. Chase loves it. And this is 1975. The whole Saturday Night Live story in 10 seconds.

9. Gilda Radner

Gilda Radner
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1975-1980
The most beloved of the original cast — in the years between Mary Tyler Moore and Seinfeld's Elaine, Radner was the prototype for the brainy city girl with a bundle of neuroses. She looked frail, but she was a live wire whether she was playing bratty kids, pushy talk-show hosts or old ladies like Emily Litella, who spoke out on "endangered feces," "natural racehorses" and the "deaf penalty." Like so many other SNL legends, she died way too young and remains missed.
Greatest hit: Lisa Loopner, patron saint of nerdy girls everywhere.

8. Amy Poehler

Amy Poehler
Stephen Lovekin/WireImage
Era: 2001-2008
She got more amazing every year. She could do warmth, yet was always buzzing with a real don't-mess-with-me hostility never far from the surface. The ultimate pro — the way she read and responded to the people around her raised everybody's game. She revived the ancient concept that the "Weekend Update" anchor should also raise hell the rest of the show. Poehler and Fey have more chemistry than any SNL duo since the Blues Brothers. It's a tragedy if they don't host every awards show from now on.
Greatest hit: Betty Caruso on "Bronx Beat," an urban mom grousing about her husband, the weather and everything else. ("You know what word I hate? 'Hemoglobin!' ") You can see that caustic edge in the way she sneers when Maya Rudolph starts to cry: "Here we go with the waterworks!"

7. Phil Hartman

Phil Hartman
Ron Galella/Getty
Era: 1986-1994
The grown-up in the room. In the credits, he's not hanging on the street like most of the others; he's relaxing at a swank lounge with a blonde. (Hard to watch, now that we know the blonde was the real-life cokehead wife who killed him in 1998.) He was nicknamed "the Glue" for holding the show together. Chris Farley's motivational-speaker rant never could have worked without Hartman as the cool dad in chinos, keeping a straight face. No role was too small for him. He was a master at playing bitter old men; his Sinatra made Piscopo's look like a cream puff. ("I got chunks of guys like you in my stool!") But his speciality was charming assholes, from the Colon Blow ad to Bill Clinton. Oh, that smug smile when he tells the Secret Service, "There's gonna be a whole bunch of things we don't tell Mrs. Clinton."
Greatest hit: "Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer," where he sums up the classic pitch of the all-American con man: "Your world frightens and confuses me. . . . But there is one thing I do know."

6. Bill Murray

Bill Murray
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1977-1980
He was the cast's first "new guy," which probably gave him that underdog's mean streak. More than anyone, he embodied SNL's this-could-be-you realness; he looked like a random Seventies burnout who happened to bluff his way to the stage — he made it seem like anyone could do it. Nobody's ever been so good at making audiences feel like they were funny, which in many ways is the essence of SNL.
Greatest hit: Nick the Lounge Singer, who treats every dismal gig like it could finally be his chance to shine. Whether he's in the Zephyr Room at Lake Minnehonka or the Powder Room on Meatloaf Mountain, he croons his heart out: "The first couple on the floor will also get their picture on the cover of next week's Breezy Point Lodge Bulletin, so, ladies and gentlemen — it's dancing time!"

5. Dan Aykroyd

Dan Aykroyd
Edie Baskin
Era: 1975-1979
Of the original greats, Aykroyd is the least imitated — just because nobody else can do what he did. His seriousness, his biker-intellectual intensity — he could grab your attention just standing onstage for the "good nights" and asking if anyone could sell him fuel tanks for his '71 Harley. The classic sketch where he's a grumpy mechanic telling his daughter Gilda a bedtime story about doing a wheel alignment — only Aykroyd could make that so touching as well as funny. He had a real empathy for American hucksters and sleazebags – what makes the "Bass-o-Matic" sketch isn't the joke (a fish in a blender, big deal), it's Aykroyd's demented grin.
Greatest hit: President Jimmy Carter, talking down a kid from a bad acid trip. "Remember, you're a living organism on this planet and you're very safe. You've just taken a heavy drug. Relax, stay inside and listen to some music — do you have any Allman Brothers?" If the actual President Carter could have governed like that, the 1970s might have turned out differently.

4. Mike Myers

Mike Myers
Edie Baskin
Era: 1989-1995
Myers has kept a low profile since his Austin Powers days, so at this point he seems curiously obscure. But more than anyone, he epitomized the manic, art-damaged energy that revitalized comedy in the early Nineties. Like his British idols Peter Sellers and Peter Cook, he threw himself into his characters with madcap enthusiasm — metalhead Wayne, middle-aged yenta Linda Richman, monkey-stroking German aesthete Dieter. He missed the first few episodes in 1992 because he was working on the Wayne's World 2 screenplay; it turned into a nationwide vigil praying for Myers to return. The only word to sum up his genius is "asphinctersayswhat?"
Greatest hit: Linda Richman hosting "Coffee Talk," getting verklempt over Barbra Streisand's legs. Like buttah.

3. Tina Fey

Tina Fey
Jim Spellman/WireImage
Era: 2000-2006
You could argue that most of her onscreen contribution was "Weekend Update," but Fey did a lot more than salvage "Update" from a decade-long losing streak — it swiftly became the highlight of the show, as the entire franchise remade itself around the wry, sardonic, not-afraid-of-her-brain Fey style. She slapped SNL out of its late-Nineties coma. Suddenly the skits were full of ass-kicking women, just because Fey proved how much they could get away with. And her 2008 return as Sarah Palin might be the most brilliant move SNL ever made. Talk about a hot streak — it was a moment when all America spent the week waiting to see what Fey would come up with on Saturday.
Greatest hit: "I can see Russia from my house!" almost made it worth having Palin around.

2. Eddie Murphy

Eddie Murphy
NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty
Era: 1980-1984
It's customary (and accurate) to say Eddie Murphy is the only reason SNL survived the five-year wilderness without Lorne Michaels. Nobody had seen anything like him. He stood out from anyone else on TV, mostly by being so young — he was the first post-boomer comedy star, a kid born in the Sixties and down with the Eighties. He mocked SNL's racial hang-ups (which isn't to say he made them go away). Murphy could make any moment memorable — the shooting of Buckwheat, the boiling of Larry the Lobster, the C-I-L-L-ing of his landlord. But he was funny just standing still, as in the classic Tootsie sketch that basically consisted of Gary Kroeger putting makeup on Murphy. He knew how to stare into a TV camera like he owned it.
Greatest hit: His 1981 "Kill My Landlord" poem remains a heartwarming piece of verse. "Dark and lonely on the summer night/Kill my landlord, kill my landlord/Watchdog barking — do he bite?"

1. John Belushi

John Belushi
Edie Baskin
Era: 1975-1979
Nobody embodied the highs and lows of Saturday Night Live like Belushi. He was the first rock & roll star of comedy — a touch of John Lennon soul behind all that Keith Richards pirate bravado. All the extremes were there in his weird physique — a wrestler's body with a dancer's feet, a palooka face with a showgirl's eyelashes. He was the first to make a cocaine joke on SNL (sixth episode — Beethoven takes a hit from the snuffbox and turns into Ray Charles), as well as the first to make the host (Buck Henry) gush blood after accidentally slashing him in the head with his samurai sword. There was always something boyishly vulnerable in his madness, whether he was doing the slow burn (Captain Kirk, George Wallace) or exploding (his horrifying Sam Peckinpah). Belushi was the "live" in Saturday Night Live, the one who made the show happen on the edge. We should have gotten a lot more years with him than we did. But no.
Greatest hit: "Samurai Hitman," where Belushi proves he doesn't need words — just a robe and a sword — to turn a one-joke premise into a savage comic ballet.

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