If you didn't watch the Weekend Update: Summer Edition broadcast last night -- or didn't watch the video of Tina Fey's return to SNL that has been making its way around the Internet today -- here is it below. And even if you did see it, it's just a hoot. Basically, it's Tina Fey ranting about politics while gorging on sheet cake for 3-1/2 minutes.
Fey was a surprise guest -- much to the delight of the live audience -- because she's a graduate of the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, where the rally took place over the weekend, so ostensibly she was there to comment. And she starts off fine and straight-forward, if upset about it all. And then it all takes a u-turn, and she gives co-host Colin Jost a lesson in dealing with your anger by "sheet-caking."
(Fun too is watching her masterfully maneuver the cake with her fork like a pro, to get the biggest portions of cake, which suggests pretty clearly that this is not just a first-time sketch for TV, but she's someone who has probably sheet-caked before in her life at moments of angst...)
It's pretty hard not to love Tiny Fey for her relentless normalcy and self-effacement, while rising above it to wonderful levels. I have no doubt there are people who can't stand her. After all, there are people who don't like pizza and puppies. And no doubt there are people who hate her take-down of white supremacists, Nazis and hate mongers. But political as this is -- and it's very political -- it is still first and foremost a comedy routine. And it's one thing to hate (or love) the words, but another to be able to step back and revel in the comedy. And this just ratchets Tina Fey joy up a few notches -- pigging out on sheet cake for 3-1/2 minutes on national television while taking down all that's mean and nasty in what can only be described by one of today's cliches: an epic rant.
But to be clear, it's not the rant that makes this. Anyone can rant. But doing it while stuffing your face with sheet cake, that's high art. Or low art. Or just a plain goofy joy.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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