Saturday Night Live (season 1) - Episodes

Episodes

Episode
Number
Date Host Musical Guest Remarks
1 October 11, 1975 George Carlin Billy Preston
Janis Ian
  • The cold open was John Belushi as a foreign man learning English being taught by SNL writer Michael O'Donoghue. Following this skit, Chevy Chase appeared with a head set on and bellowed the very first Live From New York, It's Saturday Night!
  • George Carlin had no involvement in sketches (at his request), and this was the only episode where the host did so. He only appeared to do stand-up, introduce the musical guests, and the good night segment. Carlin wanted to wear a t-shirt, but the network wanted him to wear a suit. So, Carlin wore a jacket and vest over his t-shirt, and did the show while supposedly high on drugs.
  • Carlin performed three monologues, including "Baseball-Football," a bit less-than complimentary to the former; ironically, NBC President Herbert Schlosser watched the episode along with Major League Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn (NBC was airing the World Series, which had begun that day) – and the fact that the "straitlaced, very proper" Kuhn had laughed at a few of the sketches was, to him, the first indication that, with this new show, the network might be on to something.
  • Billy Crystal was to appear, but his stand-up segment was cut when the dress rehearsal ran long.
  • Kaufman's segment, which consisted of him playing the Mighty Mouse theme on a record player, survived editing cuts.
  • On June 28, 2008, NBC cancelled a re-airing of the season 33 episode hosted by Ellen Page to air this episode following Carlin's death.
  • Valri Bromfield made a guest appearance.
  • Billy Preston performed "Nothing from Nothing" and "Fancy Lady."
  • Janis Ian performed "At Seventeen" and "In the Winter."
  • First appearance of the Bees.
  • Featured the Albert Brooks film, "The Impossible Truth," which Brooks himself appeared in.
  • Paul Simon appeared to announce that he would host next week's show.
  • Dan Aykroyd wrote the "Trojan Horse Home Security" sketch.
  • Andrew Duncan played the announcer in the "Triple-Trac" sketch while Al Franken played the caveman.
  • Features The Land of Gorch segment with Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Rhonda Hansome, and Alice Tweedy performing.
  • Jacqueline Carlin appeared as the mom in the "New Dad Insurance" sketch and as the woman with a book in the "Academy of Better Careers" sketch.
  • Wendy Craig was the salesman in the "Academy of Better Careers" sketch.
  • Richard Belzer (the show's warm-up comedian), writer Tom Davis, and talent coordinator Neil Levy played jurors in the "Courtroom" sketch.
  • Belzer, Davis, Levy, Franken, Craig, Franken, Tom Schiller, Akira Yoshimura, and Franken were extras.
2 October 18, 1975 Paul Simon Randy Newman
Phoebe Snow
Art Garfunkel
Jessy Dixon Singers
  • This episode contained an all-time record 11 musical performances. The Not Ready for Prime Time Players appeared only as the Bees, in a sketch in which they broke character when Paul Simon told them their piece had been cut. Chevy Chase appeared only in the cold opening and on Weekend Update.
  • Connie Hawkins and Marv Albert appeared on Weekend Update.
  • Jerry Rubin appeared in the "Up Against the Wallpaper" sketch.
  • Bill Bradley appeared in the goodnights.
  • Most of the sketches were cut in order to extend Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel's musical set. They performed "The Boxer," "Scarborough Fair" and their then-new single "My Little Town."
  • Paul Simon performed "Still Crazy After All These Years," "Marie" and "American Tune" solo, and performed "Loves Me Like a Rock" with the Jessy Dixon Singers and "Gone at Last" with Phoebe Snow.
  • Art Garfunkel performed "I Only Have Eyes for You."
  • Randy Newman performed "Sail Away."
  • Phoebe Snow performed the "No Regrets."
  • George Coe and Michael O'Donoghue were removed from the opening credits.
  • Featured director Albert Brooks's film – failed Candid Camera stunts and home movies.
  • Featured a sketch from "The Land of Gorch."
3 October 25, 1975 Rob Reiner
  • Reiner is the first host to appear in full sketches with the regular cast.
  • Future cast member Denny Dillon appeared as a "special guest" with Mark Hampton in a sketch as nuns running a parish talent show.
  • The bit players are Anne Beatts, Tom Davis, Al Franken, Alan Zweibel, and Neil Levy.
  • Jacqueline Carlin has a bit part as a swimmer in the "Golden Needles" sketch.
  • Tom Schiller appears as the priest in the "Wrigley's Gum" sketch and as one of the Bees.
  • Rob Reiner's then-wife Penny Marshall appears in the "Fashion Show," "Hoe-Down," and "the Bees" sketches.
  • Comedian Andy Kaufman makes a cameo appearance.
  • The Lockers make a guest appearance.
  • The first appearance of "The News for the Hard of Hearing."
  • George Coe is not listed in the opening credits.
  • Features "The Land of Gorch" sketch with Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Alice Tweedy, and Richard Hunt performing.
  • There was no billed musical guest for this episode. At host Reiner's request, John Belushi did his impersonation of Joe Cocker while performing "With a Little Help from My Friends" (which originated during Belushi's stint in National Lampoon's Lemmings).
  • Features director Albert Brooks's film – heart surgery.
  • The show ended without a goodbye from the host or final credits. Credits were not created until the episode was rerun in 1978.
4 November 8, 1975 Candice Bergen Esther Phillips
  • Candice Bergen is the first woman to host the show.
  • Chevy Chase debuts his Gerald Ford impression.
  • Andrew Duncan makes a cameo appearance.
  • First appearance of the Landshark.
  • The bit players are Neil Levy, Tom Davis, and Al Franken.
  • Jacqueline Carlin makes a cameo appearance.
  • Chevy Chase proclaims for the first time on Weekend Update, "I'm Chevy Chase... and you're not."
  • Andy Kaufman debuts his Foreign Man character on the show.
  • Esther Phillips performed the songs "What a Diff'rence a Day Made" and "I Can Stand a Little Rain."
  • Features Albert Brooks's film – upcoming season.
  • Jim Henson, Jerry Nelson, and Frank Oz performing their Muppet characters in "The Land of Gorch".
  • The cast joins the host on stage for the Good nights segment for the first time. This would be a tradition that would continue throughout the show.
5 November 15, 1975 Robert Klein ABBA
Loudon Wainwright III
  • Laraine Newman debuts her character Sherry.
  • ABBA makes two appearances, singing "S.O.S." on board the sinking "Titanic," and lip-synch their second number, "Waterloo." Captions informed the audience that "It's not their fault. The tapes didn't arrive from Sweden."
  • Loudon Wainwright III performed the songs "Bicentennial" and "Unrequited to the Nth Degree."
  • Host Robert Klein performed the song "I Can't Stop My Leg" with the Saturday Night Live Band. Klein co-wrote the sketch with Howard Shore and Paul Shaffer.
  • First appearance of Emily Litella.
  • The bit players are Anne Beatts, Alan Zweibel and Neil Levy.
  • Al Franken and Tom Davis play the pong players.
  • Michael O'Donoghue appears as an extra.
  • The audience hears Lorne Michaels's voice in one the sketches.
  • John Belushi writes one of the sketches.
  • George Coe makes a guest appearance.
  • Gilda Radner co-writes a sketch with Alan Zweibel.
  • Features a sketch from "The Land of Gorch" with Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Jerry Nelson, Richard Hunt, Alice Tweedy, and Fran Brill performing.
6 November 22, 1975 Lily Tomlin Tomlin with Howard Shore & the All Nurse Band
  • Lily Tomlin is the first host to interact with The Muppets where she sings "I Got You Babe" with Scred from "The Land of Gorch." She is also technically the first to host and be in the musical act, but the show was listed without a musical act. She performed the songs "St. James Infirmary Blues" and "Bee Bop."
7 December 13, 1975 Richard Pryor Gil Scott-Heron
  • This episode had the first seven-second delay for "SNL."
  • In the cold open, the actors break character when Chevy Chase discovered that Garrett Morris, after Richard Pryor's suggested it to him, intended to do "The Fall of the Week" and say "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!" After arguing, Chase agrees and instructs Morris on how to do the pratfall.
  • Richard Pryor was the first African-American to host "SNL."
  • Paul Mooney wrote some of Pryor's routines, including the "Racist Word Association Interview."
  • The West Coast airing of this episode bleeped out Richard Pryor saying "ass" during one of his stand-up routines. It has since been shown intact.
  • Garrett Morris says "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!" in this episode. It is one of only two Season One episodes in which the line is said by someone other than Chevy Chase.
  • Pryor's ex-wife Shelley Pryor makes a cameo appearance.
  • Pryor's long-time girlfriend, actress-talk show host Kathrine McKee made a brief guest appearance with Pryor.
  • Gil Scott-Heron performed the songs "Johannesburg" and "A Lovely Day."
  • Thalmus Rasulala played one of the priests, along with Pryor, in the "Exorcist II" sketch.
  • The first appearance of Samurai Futaba.
  • This features Albert Brooks's film, – sick.
  • This episode features a new sketch from "The Land of Gorch."
  • The episode introduces the recurring catchphrase "Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead" during Weekend Update.
8 December 20, 1975 Candice Bergen Martha Reeves
The Stylistics
  • Candice Bergen became the first person to host the show a second time and the first to host more than once in the same season.
  • Maggie Kuhn made a cameo appearance.
  • Martha Reeves performed the songs "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" and "Silver Bells."
  • Candice Begen appears in "The Land of Gorch" sketch where she attends King Ploobis' Christmas party while the guests that he had invited are attending the Killer Bees' Christmas party.
  • The Stylistics performed the song "You Make Me Feel Brand New."
  • Candice Bergen performed the song "Winter Wonderland" with the cast (in which Garrett Morris sang the lead).
  • The "Homeward Bound" short film from this episode was included in the prime-time special "SNL: Just Shorts."
9 January 10, 1976 Elliott Gould Anne Murray
  • The first of Gould's six hosting stints.
  • The last episode to feature a film by Albert Brooks - audience test screenings.
  • Paula Kahn made a cameo appearance.
  • Anne Murray performed the songs "The Call" and "Boogie with You."
  • Lorne Michaels makes his first appearance on the show.
  • Future SNL cast member and writer (and future U.S. Senator) Al Franken makes an appearance along with future writer and occasional performer Tom Davis.
  • Jim Henson, Alice Tweedy, Jerry Nelson, and Frank Oz perform their characters in "The Land of Gorch."
  • Features the Interior Demolitionists sketch.
  • This episode was submitted for the Emmy Award Consideration and won SNL their first Emmy in 1977
10 January 17, 1976 Buck Henry Bill Withers
Toni Basil
  • The first appearance of The Blues Brothers, in the Bees costumes, the first and last time the costumes would be used in the act. They performed "I'm a King Bee" with Howard Shore and His All-Bee Band.
  • At Henry's insistence, there was another Saturday Night Live Samurai sketch: "Samurai Delicatessen", making Samurai Futaba a recurring character. It also marked the first appearance of Henry's character Mr. Dantley in "Samurai Delicatessen".
  • The first of Henry's 10 hosting stints.
  • Alice Tweedy and Jerry Nelson perform their characters in "The Land of Gorch."
  • Bill Withers performed the "Ain't No Sunshine."
  • Toni Basil performed the "Wham."
11 January 24, 1976 Peter Cook
Dudley Moore
Neil Sedaka
  • Don Pardo reads the names of the regular cast members during the opening credits for the first time.
  • Cook and Moore are the first British performers to host and the first co-hosts.
  • Scred from "The Land of Gorch" comes out in a bee costume hoping to be in their sketch, only to be told by Gilda Radner that the sketch was cancelled. Scred joins Gilda into introducing Neil Sedaka.
  • Neil Sedaka performed the songs "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do" and "Lonely Nights."
12 January 31, 1976 Dick Cavett Jimmy Cliff
  • Humorist Marshall Efron and Al Alen Petersen made cameo appearances.
  • Jimmy Cliff performed the songs "The Harder They Come," "Many Rivers to Cross" and "Wahjahka Man."
  • This was the second show to end without credits, as the show ran long with only the two bumpers appearing on the show before it ended. The ending was replaced with the closing credits from Cavett's second show in the following years.
13 February 14, 1976 Peter Boyle Al Jarreau
  • The Shapiro Sisters dance and lip-sync the song "This Will Be." One of the sisters, Jenny, also appears in a sketch.
  • Al Jarreau performs the songs "We Got By" and "Somebody's Watching You."
  • Steven Spielberg makes an appearance in the audience while Peter Boyle sings a love song to his "wife".
14 February 21, 1976 Desi Arnaz Desi Arnaz & Desi Arnaz Jr.
  • Though he is not the first host to perform musically on the show, Arnaz is the first host to be simultaneously credited as musical guest. Arnaz and his son performed the songs "Cuban Pete" and "Babalu."
  • Actor Taylor Mead made a filmed cameo appearance.
15 February 28, 1976 Jill Clayburgh Leon Redbone
The Singing Idlers
  • A cappella group The Idlers and comedian Andy Kaufman made cameo appearances. Host Jill Clayburgh also appeared with these guests.
  • This is Kaufman's fourth appearance
  • Photographer and video artist William Wegman appears with his dog in Gary Weis's filmed piece.
  • Leon Redbone performed the songs "Ain't Misbehavin'" and "Big Time Woman."
  • When the characters of "The Land of Gorch" are attending the Grammy Awards, Chevy Chase ends up acting out the sketch.
  • The first appearance of Mister Bill in response to the show's request for home movies.
  • Lorne Michaels makes his second appearance in a sketch, imploring Chevy to once again start the show with a pratfall.
16 March 13, 1976 Anthony Perkins Betty Carter
  • This is the first episode to feature pictures of the cast in the opening credits.
  • Betty Carter performed the songs "Music Maestro, Please / Swing Brother Swing" and "I Can't Help It."
  • King Ploobis and Scred from "The Land of Gorch" approach Anthony Perkins for help to get their sketch back on the air.
17 April 17, 1976 Ron Nessen Patti Smith Group
  • Ron Nessen, press secretary for President Gerald Ford, is the first political figure to host the show. Ford himself appears in a filmed segment during the cold opening where he opens the show with "Live from New York, it's Saturday Night!" after Chevy Chase's signature pratfall.
  • Future cast member Billy Crystal appears on the show for the first time, performing a monologue.
  • First appearance of Dan Aykroyd as talk show host Tom Snyder.
  • Patti Smith Group performed the song "Gloria" and "My Generation."
18 April 24, 1976 Raquel Welch Phoebe Snow
John Sebastian
  • Lorne Michaels appears on air, offering the Beatles $3,000 to perform three songs.
  • This episode was originally supposed to have a sketch called "Planet of the Enormous Hooters," where a woman (Raquel Welch) gets banned from a planet of women who all have enormous breasts, but the sketch was cut after dress rehearsal. A version of the sketch would finally be used on the season 14 episode hosted by Dolly Parton.
  • Raquel Welch performed the song "Superstar" with John Belushi as Joe Cocker, as well as "It Ain't Necessarily So."
  • The characters from "The Land of Gorch" face facts that they aren't welcome on the show anymore.
  • Phoebe Snow performed the songs "All Over" and "Two-Fisted Love."
  • John Sebastian performed the song "Welcome Back" with John Belushi as Joe Cocker.
19 May 8, 1976 Madeline Kahn Carly Simon
  • Scred and The Mighty Favog cut a deal with Chevy Chase to have Lorne Michaels renew their sketch in exchange that The Mighty Favog gets The Beatles to appear on the show.
  • Carly Simon performed the songs "Half a Chance / You're So Vain" in a pre-taped segment with Chevy Chase playing cowbell.

NOTE: Paul McCartney and John Lennon reportedly were watching the segment with Scred and The Mighty Favog on the day it aired and considered going to Rockefeller Center to surprise the audience, but decided to stay in their apartment.

20 May 15, 1976 Dyan Cannon Leon and Mary Russell
  • Leon and Mary Russell performed the songs "Satisfy You" and "Daylight," the latter of which featured John Belushi as Joe Cocker.
  • Leon Russell would not appear on SNL again for almost 35 years, an unofficial show record.
21 May 22, 1976 Buck Henry Gordon Lightfoot
  • Lorne Michaels appears again, offering the Beatles $3,200 and free hotel accommodations to perform three songs.
  • Gordon Lightfoot performed the songs "Summertime Dream" and "Spanish Moss." A third song ("Sundown") is interrupted by John Belushi's Samurai.
22 May 29, 1976 Elliott Gould Leon Redbone
Harlan Collins & Joyce Everson
  • Leon Redbone performed the songs "Shine On, Harvest Moon" and "Walking Stick."
  • Harlan Collins & Joyce Everson performed "Heaven Only Knows."
  • The sketch called The Last Voyage of the Starship Enterprise written by Michael O'Donoghue, a parody of the Star Trek TV series involving the crew trying to deal with the show's cancellation in 1968 became an instant cult classic among Star Trek fans and science fiction fans in general.
  • Akira Yoshimura and Doris Powell appeared in the The Last Voyage of the Starship Enterprise.
23 July 24, 1976 Louise Lasser Preservation Hall Jazz Band
  • Louise Lasser nearly backed out of hosting at the last minute, and agreed to remain only when producers threatened to have a cast member read all of her lines while wearing a wig; she did continue to insist on filming several segments in advance, and that she only appear by herself or with Chevy Chase. (The episode is perhaps most memorable for her opening monologue, where she pretends to have a bout of stage fright and lock herself in her dressing room.) Lasser became the first person to be banned from the show.
  • Actor Michael Sarrazin made a filmed cameo appearance.
  • Preservation Hall Jazz Band performed the song "Panama."
  • The first live broadcast in SNL history to air in July.
24 July 31, 1976 Kris Kristofferson Rita Coolidge
  • Rita Coolidge performed the songs "Hula Hoop" and "Eddie the Eunuch."
  • Host Kris Kristofferson performed the aforementioned guest vocal and performed the song "I've Got a Life of My Own."
  • Kristofferson later admitted that he was drunk during the live show.
  • The second (and last) live broadcast in SNL history to air in July.

Read more about this topic:  Saturday Night Live (season 1)

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