Cracked made a list of the worst Saturday Night Live characters. We always found Hans and Franz’s pouffy muscles endearing, but they ranked a No. 4. Maybe we just liked the clapping part in the "We’re going to pump (clap) you up!"
Who made No. 1?
Every generation has its own "fat, funny guy." And since ours was Chris Farley, some of us can’t quite see the genius behind John Belushi (though this might also be due to his brother, Jim, forever linking the Belushi name to jokes about how husbands never do laundry and forget about their wives whenever "the big game" is on). Yes, the guy was gifted. We’re just saying we don’t spontaneously wet our pants every time he appears on TV the way our parents do.
Witness one of Belushi’ more famous characters, The Samurai, from his heyday on SNL. Here’ the premise for The Samurai sketch: The Samurai finds himself in a job that is inappropriate for a person with a samurai’ skill set. Things are chopped, gibberish is screamed and suicide is attempted – over and over again.
Regardless of John’ place in the annals of American comedy, you must admit he paved the way for a whole line of one-note recurring characters that came after him. It can be said, in fact, that every single recurring character on SNL can directly trace their origins to a specific Samurai Futaba episode. Before there was Rob Schneider’ "You Like-a the Juice" Guy, there was "Samurai Delicatessen." Before Cheri Oteri put on her Judge Judy wig, there was "Samurai Divorce Court." Even The Ladies Man’ seemingly inherent funkiness was in actuality handed down from "Samurai Night Fever." That’ why he makes the top spot, because none of the other characters on this list would have been possible without Belushi and his cohorts on the original SNL cast…and we don’t mean that in a good way.
Follow Gillian Reagan via RSS.