Friday, September 29, 2017

Funniest Female SNL Alumni

Funniest Female SNL Alumnae

There is nothing particularly entertaining about this list, but it got me to thinking about something: there has never been an SNL alumna who became a film star on the level of Chase, Belushi, Farrell, Murphy, Murray, Myers, Sandler and Farley. In terms of film success, I don't know if any alumna even belong in the second tier with the likes of Spade, Schneider and Ackroyd.

Tina Fey is a big star and a huge talent, but (1) she is not a film star and (2) she was basically the head writer on SNL, not a sketch performer. Her biggest on-camera job on the show was the Weekend Update. Her impressive gifts as a comic actress didn't emerge until 30 Rock, and it was that show rather than SNL which made her a bona fide TV superstar.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus is also a monster TV star. In terms of pure success, Tina and Julia (as well as Seth Myers) are up there with the others listed above, but they are TV stars, not film icons.

Can Kate McKinnon break through in films? I think she may be the most talented female performer in the history of the show. She will do anything for a laugh, and she can make you cry as well, so it's possible for her to go nova, but I'll be surprised if it actually happens. I think she's going to end up as more of a niche performer like Phil Hartman or Bill Hader.


  1. I dunno. I think Wiig has done pretty respectably at the box office, despite Ghostbusters. She hit the box office numbers with Bridesmaids. In fact, she might have the highest grossing SNL alum debut starring vehicle of any of them. McKinnon has a chance, but not as a lead. Which is fine by me, she will continue to deliver stellar character work and probably has the best chance of hitting an Oscar nod for supporting down the line. Thogh, just by personal preference, I think that Maya Rudolph is the most talented female to come out of SNL. And she's married to Paul Thomas Anderson!

  2. I don't think many people, if any, think "I have to see the new Kristen Wiig movie," as so many once did with Belushi, Murray, Murphy and others, and as some still do with Adam Sandler. At the very best, she could be in the second tier with Dan Ackroyd.

    That is not to detract from her performing, which is fine. She was even good in her dramatic lead in Welcome to Me, but she's not a break-out star.

    I've always been lukewarm about Maya, but I sure loved her mom's work!