If you’ve ever so much as turned on a television (even a an old-fashioned boob tube, with dials on it and rabbit ears), you remember Saturday Night Live, the homestead of so many of the greats of contemporary comedy—the iconic sketch show born back in 1975 that has been alive longer than most of the comedic actors who now appear on it.
SNL is now 40 years strong so it is no wonder that it has, quite literally, set the stage for an intensely long list of stars who got their first big shots in the spotlight. Among them have been, in no particular order: Jon Belushi, Chevy Chase, Gilda Radner, Dan Akroyd, Eddie Murphy and Bill Murray. Also, Mike Myers, Will Farrell, Adam Sandler, Jimmy Fallon, Chris Farley, Fred Armisen and Bill Hader. Martin Short and Tina Fey. Hell, even Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Elliot passed through.
Now you can own the book that is clearly the course catalog of contemporary American comics. Written and edited by Alison Castle (NYU and Columbia University graduate as well as recurring Taschen film-and-photography editor) Saturday Night Live: the Book serves as the show’s encyclopedic reference, with over 2,300 images, a complete reference guide by season detailing cast and guests, and an interview with executive producer Lorne Michaels. A must-have for anyone serious about comedy. Hardcover, 500 pages, and comes with ribbon bookmarks for $50.
More looks at this library of laughter after the Jump…