On Oct. 11, 1975, viewers tuned in to NBC’s map out comedy collection Saturday Night Live for the an initial time. The Hollywood Reporter’s original review is below.

You are watching: First episode of saturday night live

NBC’s live late-night musical-comedy series, Saturday Night, gained off to a much less than auspicious begin with comic George Carlin as the opened night host. The 90 minute show, which replaced reruns of The Tonight present With Johnny Carson, was plagued throughout v a absence of interesting guests and innovative writing, help to store the debut at a lackluster pace.

Director Dave Wilson handled his technological chores come perfection — so fine in reality (no miscues, dead mikes or dropped currently in sight) the the live facet of the telecast was all yet lost together a result. Promos because that the present stating, “It’s live so anything can happen,” just served to make the reality that nothing ever did that much much more obvious.

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Rock musician Billy Preston, individual singer Janis Ian, and comedians Andy Kaufman and also Valri Bromfield tackled their guest spots through varying effectiveness. In much too quick comedy bits, Kaufman provided the show’s funniest moments with a spoof the the Mighty Mouse theme, if Bromfield’s talents were wasted on a monologue about an athletic coach. Preston, a musical magician top top the keyboard, impressed v his soulful “Fancy Lady.”

Earlier, his worn “Nothing indigenous Nothing” served mainly to wake up the audience. The social comment in Janis Ian’s haunting “At Seventeen” was shed as her sterile stage presence (more suitable in an intimate boite than a studio setting) commanded more attention 보다 her song. Monologues by Carlin linked the performances, and while separation, personal, instance lines to be humorous, the all at once effect to be not.

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The ultimate success that this collection will depend largely on producer Lorne Michaels’ mixture of guests and hosts, and his prompt upgrading the the comedy material being turned the end by his staff of ten writers. Prick Ebersol is executive producer for NBC, with lighting by Bob Davis and also music native the Howard shore orchestra.— Richard Hack, initially published top top Oct. 14, 1975.