For 37 seasons Saturday Night Live has been an NBC staple.  With that kind of longevity, it is hard to keep the material fresh and funny.  So, it’s such a treat when there are episodes where sketch after sketch you find yourself crying from laughter.  This season the shows hosted by Melissa McCarthy and Maya Rudolph filled that bill for me and were complete grand slams.  Thinking about these funny gals made me remember last year’s SNL reunion show on Oprah where original cast member Jane Curtin said that during her tenure (1975-1980) it was a misogynistic environment.

[John Belushi] said, ‘Women are just fundamentally not funny.’ You’d go to a table read, and if a woman writer had written a piece for John, he would not read it in his full voice. He would whisper it. He felt as though it was his duty to sabotage pieces that were written by women.

Speaking of sabotaging women — with the great birth control debate in the news the past couple of weeks, I loved how SNL addressed the issue in their popular bit, Really!?! with Seth and Amy.  I also loved how Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, Democrat of New York, called out the panel by asking the obvious question:

Where are the women? It’s outrageous that the Republicans would not allow a single individual representing the tens of millions of women who want and need insurance coverage for basic preventive health care services, including family planning.

If the House committee wanted to only address a panel of religious leaders why not include women?  Last time I checked there are plenty of female religious leaders that could have taken part.  So much for the expression “You’ve Really Come A Long Way, Baby.”  Oddly enough, the Virgina Slims ad campaign that brought that expression into our daily dialogue highlighted a photo in the background of how men oppressed women, while showing a colorful splashy photo of a happy model appearing in control of her life in the foreground.

Background copy says: In 1962, Mr. Lee Evans made it clear that he wore the pants in the family. But once a week, he didn't mind giving them to his wife.

Background copy says: In 1913, equal opportunity employer Richard Pittman gave women every opportunity to shine.

Looks like the background image and messages from those ads continue to be more appealing to some men and places women exactly where they want them to be — in the background.


One thought on “Really!?!

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