Who would have predicted Betty White as a ratings powerhouse?
A strong turnout by some of the show’s funniest ladies – Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Ana Gasteyer, Maya Rudolph, Rachel Dratch, and Molly Shannon – was a nice tribute to the veteran comedienne.
And White herself was just fetching – fetchingly funny. The 88-year-old actress “was a hit,” declared the San Francisco Chronicle. “If the material Saturday night was not always stellar and was, at times, totally earthbound, it was funny often enough, and sometimes when it wasn’t funny, the show was incidentally touching,” said the LA Times.
Calling White “the oddest comet in our crowded celebrity sky,” NY Daily News TV critic David Hinckley said she “did nothing to diminish her stature.”
A brief historical note: White became the oldest person to host SNL, but she’s not the first octogenarian to step into that spot. In 1977, 80-year-old Miskel Spillman won an “Anyone Can Host” contest and appeared in a skit where she smoked pot with John Belushi, and another golden oldie, Ruth Gordon, also graced the show in the ’70s.
Watch these funny highlights from Saturday: