Original or Extra Crispy: the Definitive Rankings of SNL’s Best Cast Ever.

Original or Extra Crispy: the Definitive Rankings of SNL’s Best Cast Ever.

And Now For Something Completely Different ? PART 2

A comprehensive overview of TV?s longest-running comedy show, using advanced analytics.

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[Part 2 of a series to determine the greatest age of TV comedy.]

THE LOCKDOWN, DAY 40: After wandering through the wilderness of life without sports, we?ve got to find something to argue about.

You know you need this if you have:

  • Already lost track of the day (Roy)
  • Become disoriented by spending every waking hour playing a Sims-style virtual reality game (Roy), or
  • Worry about being overcome by a Jack Nicholson-style murderous rage because there?s no ice cream in the house (Roy)

Here?s a quick summary of the game I created in order to deal with my own sports withdrawal symptoms.

Just What You?ve Been Waiting For? the One True Rating System to Determine Comedy?s Golden Age

Best. Season. Ever?


Before we can rank the greatest seasons of TV comedy, we need to rank the greatest casts of SNL, a show that has been with us since 1975.

I have to admit I didn?t comprehend the depth of the SNL rabbit hole going in, so it took forever to finish this article.

The good news is, by the time you finish reading it, we may be out of quarantine.

And it?s not like you have someplace to be, right?

TL;DR? The magic of interactive storytelling gives you a choice.

You can either join me for the next 15 minutes or jump past all the statistical analysis and get to the results.

The following internal links will take you to the results you want to see, even if it means you will miss all the jokes I worked so hard to write.

The All-Time All-SNL Team

(I get it. You want to skip the methodology and see the Top 15 cast members based on their complete careers)

A hilarious Simpsons clip

(Wow. You must be the busiest person in self-quarantine to skip the rankings. At least you?ll see a funny reference about one SNL cast member.)

The all-time SNL cast rankings by year

(You really wanted to cut to the chase, didn?t you?)

The best SNL cast of all time

(You just wanted to see if you had a reason to troll me in the comments, with no interest in the scientific method)


To rate the best casts from SNL history, I used five metrics, with a rating scale of 1?10, to add up the scores and divide by five to come up with a final rating because everyone prefers round numbers like 7.27531.

Since SNL is a team effort, like basketball, these ratings break down the superstars, starters, bench, coaches (writing staff) and front office (producer).

  1. How do the superstars of the Not Ready For Primetime repertory players rate in terms of their overall careers in the comedy star pantheon? Eddie Murphy is the Michael Jordan of SNL cast history, since he was the biggest standup comedian in the world in his prime and also became a box office superstar. He gets a 10, and we?ll measure everyone else against him.
  2. How do the starters fit together? Does the superstar make the players around him/her better? How deep is the starting lineup? How many starters go on to become the lead on other TV shows or films?
  3. How good is the bench on the show? Those featured players who kill it in their sketches but never get top billing on the show. Superstars like Ben Stiller made brief appearances on SNL
  4. How talented was the writing staff? Did the key creatives maintain their comedic powers in future endeavors?
  5. Who was the producer of the show? This one is already determined: Lorne Michaels (10), Dick Ebersol (7), Jean Doumanian (1)

Selection Years: 1975?2011

It?s difficult to rate the cast members of the most recent ten years because they haven?t had a chance to develop their careers as much as previous generations.

When it comes to ranking the best players of all time, NBA fanatics use far more specific thought experiments than simply comparing statistics, asking questions like:

?Who would you take if you were going to start a franchise??

?Who makes their teammates better??

?Who is the most complete player??

?If you could clone players, would a team of X be better than a team of Y??

?Who had the longest period of sustained excellence??

?Who is the greatest at coming through in the clutch??

To measure our superstars, they need to be at the top of the SNL cast member rankings, have an outstanding career after SNL, AND be team players.

Cast Member Ranking System

I aggregated ranking articles and weighted them as follows:

Rolling Stone: this magazine has been with us for the entirety of SNL?s run on TV, and their journalistic standards would require a much wider level of input than the opinion of one blogger. ? 1 Vote

Fan polls: Ranker.com used fan voting, so it skews over time, as younger voters go to the site who have less and less contact or memory of the original cast. This was evident when the latest rankings put John Belushi at #10.

Business Insider?s 2015 article used Ranker ratings at the time to help determine their rankings and the current ratings. I averaged the two lists to get a single ranking ? 1 Vote

IMDB and TV Guide are respected brands, but the rankings were created by individuals, so they had less weight than the rankings above. I found two more rankings lists and averaged the four of them to get a single ranking ? 1 Vote

Grantland ran a bracket contest back in 2014, decided by the twitter-verse, and is shown below.

Image for posthttp://grantland.com/snl/

Because it pitted members from the same era against each other, Gilda Radner and Chevy Chase were eliminated before the Sweet 16.

With few exceptions, 13 of the Grantland?s Sweet Sixteen, plus Radner and Chase appear in the top 15 cast members in every ranking list I found.

Here are the final rankings, based on weighted averages.

Image for postThe weighted ranking system.

If we divide the top 15 into three groups of five, the following patterns emerge:

  1. Each group of five remains the same, regardless of whether we use a weighted, unweighted, or Olympic style (drop the highest and lowest ratings for each performer) rating system.
  2. Murphy had the #1 rating, regardless of system, and was never rated lower than #4.
  3. There was minimal movement within each group. The biggest rating variation was for Will Ferrell (#5 weighted ranking, #3 unweighted ranking, #2 Olympic Scoring) and Chris Farley (Tied for #9 weighted ranking, #7 unweighted ranking, #6 Olympic Scoring).
  4. The IMDB blogger created the list with the least statistical deviance, as there were no instances where they completely missed the rating of a performer.
  5. Rolling Stone (Fey at #3 and Ferrell at #12), Ranker (Belushi at #10 and Farley at #4) and TV Guide (Poehler at #3, Murray at #13 and Aykroyd at #15) had some of the worst rating mistakes.

Success beyond SNL

I used several sources to rate each superstar?s total career, including success in TV and film, Emmy and Oscar consideration, writing and directing credits.

Also important is The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, which recognizes performers for their lifetime achievement in comedy.

In the appendix at the end, you?ll find links to the rankings lists and the post-SNL success metrics described above.

Here?s a chart showing the biggest stars that ever appeared on SNL, based on 2014 dollars.

Image for postFrom ?Who Really Had the Best Movie Career After ?SNL??

The 538.com article also measured aggregates of rotten tomato TV and film ratings to measure the quality of work done by cast members.

After balancing the cast member ratings with post-SNL achievements, I assigned final ratings for each superstar as follows:

The all-time All-SNL Teams

1st Team: Murphy (10), Murray (9.5), Belushi (9.25), Ferrell (9), Aykroyd (9)

2nd Team: Hartman (8.75), Fey (8.5), Farley (8.25), Myers (7.75), Radner (7.75),

3rd Team: Carvey (7.25), Poehler (7.25), Hader (7), Wiig (7), Chase (7)

Best Cast Year Selection

I determined the best years by the presence of the superstars.

When Phil Hartman (ranked #2 all-time on Grantland?s SNL at 40 Bracket Challenge) left the show, the only way a future cast could compete was if they added another superstar like Will Ferrell (winner of Grantland?s SNL at 40 Bracket Challenge).


On the other hand, the absence of a cast member could affect the cast?s rating.

Chevy Chase is generally known as a jerk, leading to articles like ?He?s Not Chevy, He?s an Asshole: A History of Chevy Chase?s Horrific Behavior.?

Chase had strained relationships with his co-workers and a rivalry with John Belushi in particular that went back to their National Lampoon days.

He even got into a fistfight with Bill Murray in 1978 when he came back to host SNL.

For this reason, I took the Bill Murray SNL cast over the Chevy Chase cast, even though the rest of the cast was the same. (Also, Murray had a better film career, grossing $1.5 billion more than Chase.)

In the same way, you need to watch this video to understand how dispensable one particular cast member could be.

Watch Saturday Night Live Highlight: Weekend Update Segment ? Dennis? Oath ? NBC.com

Watch Saturday Night Live highlight ?Weekend Update Segment ? Dennis? Oath? on NBC.com


Even when Dennis Miller was young and hip, he was a rarely acquired taste, scientifically documented by Professor Frink:

While the cast from 1990?1995 was fantastic, any season without Dennis Miller had to get the edge.

And now, on to the rankings.

Live from Los Angeles, it?s the all-time SNL cast rankings by season!

#5. 1983?1984

Superstars: Eddie Murphy (10)

Murphy shows the vocal chops he?ll use at the end of Coming to America. Piscopo

Murphy?s reign as the GOAT of SNL foreshadowed his movie career. Nobody had the confidence, energy, and presence of the youngster who saved the show from cancellation.

But he did have his share of rough moments.

Murphy had the highest highs as a standup comedian and leading actor (24 Hours, Trading Places, Beverly Hills Cop, Coming to America, Bowfinger, and Shrek) but damn he was in a lot of stinkers. He was ranked #2 all-time on SNL by Rolling Stone and made the Final Four in Grantland?s SNL at 40 bracket. He is one of only seven people associated with SNL to win the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. ? 10

Starters: Julia Louis-Dreyfus is the most decorated TV actor in history with 11 Emmys, and one of only six SNL cast members to win the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, so she should have superstar status. But she didn?t even register as an SNL cast member (#45 in Rolling Stone, #49 in IMDB, and #44 on Ranker). It?s almost like saying you would want to build a baseball franchise by drafting Michael Jordan as your first player.

Joe Piscopo and Ted Kazurinksky were solid role players, and the additions of Jim Belushi and Brad Hall provided upgrades over the disastrous 1980?1982 seasons ? 7

Bench: Brian Doyle-Murray, the only featured player the previous season, was dropped from the show. There was no bench ? 0

Writers: Murphy, Piscopo, Belushi, Mary Gross, Kazurinsky were all part of a writing team nominated for an Emmy ? 8

Producer: Dick Ebersol ? 7

Final rating: 6.4

#4. 2008?2009

Superstars: Bill Hader (7), Kristen Wiig (7)

Nice ensemble piece. And yes, we Californians all speak like this? and only talk about traffic?

Because of their relative youth, Hader and Wiig could rise in the ratings as their careers progress.

Bill Hader made the Final Four of the Grantland SNL Bracket, but he?s a 3rd team All-SNL selection (#11 in Rolling Stone, #13 overall). He has gone on to act, write and direct an excellent HBO comedy, Barry, earning two wins for best lead actor in a comedy series, and two Emmy nominations for directing, writing and best comedy series. And his role in Superbad as Officer Slater was unforgettable. He?s on a path to join Dan Aykroyd and Tina Fey as the top actor-writers in the rankings.

Kristen Wiig played so many quirky characters on SNL (#13 in Rolling Stone, #14 in IMDB, #14 Business Insider), that led to quirky lead roles in movies such as Paul, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, and Bridesmaids. As a lead actress, she had high average Tomatometer ratings both as a cast member and in her films and is one of the few SNL cast members to earn an Oscar Nomination. With her voice acting chops and ability to play scene-stealing character roles, she could climb the rankings on the Will Ferrell-Phil Hartman career path.? Average =7

Starters: Record-setting depth, as Hader, Wiig, Poehler, Meyers, Forte, Armisen, Samberg and Sudeikis all went on to leading roles in other TV shows and movies. As individuals, they didn?t have the same ceiling as the casts with the highest-rated superstars, but the sheer number of quality starters can?t be overlooked ? 10

Bench: Bobby Moynihan, Abby Elliott, Nasim Pedrad, Casey Wilson. ? 6

Writers: John Mulaney, Colin Jost, Jorma Taccone, and Lorne Michaels nominated for an Emmy for best writing ? 8

Producer: Lorne Michaels ? 10

Final rating: 8.2

#3. 2001?2002

Will Ferrell is hilarious in five-minute doses

Superstars: Will Ferrell (9), Tina Fey (8.5), Amy Poehler (7.25)

Even though Will Ferrell won the Grantland SNL Bracket and was voted #1 on a couple of lists, his disappointing Rolling Stone ranking (#12) and uneven movie career have to drop him below Murray. Ferrell has created unforgettable movie characters: Mugatu in Zoolander, Mustafa in Austin Powers, Ricky Bobby, Ron Burgundy, and Jackie Moon, but the only movie he has ever carried as the lead was Stranger Than Fiction, which has the highest IMDB rating (7.6) of any Ferrell live-action film. His long career as a lead actor has allowed his films to gross $1 billion more than Aykroyd, so I had to wedge him between Belushi and Aykroyd.

Tina Fey carved out an incredible career as an SNL cast member (#3 in Rolling Stone, #8 overall), and an Emmy for outstanding SNL host (paired with Amy Poehler). As a producer, writer and lead actress for 30 Rock, she won 8 Emmys for lead actress, writing and best series. She has another 35 nominations for acting, writing or best series for her work on SNL, 30 Rock, the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and hosting three consecutive Golden Globe Awards shows.

She has above average Tomatometer ratings as an actress and has earned additional praise as a writer and showrunner for the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. She is one of six SNL cast members to win The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. The lack of a monster film in her resume is why Aykroyd edges her out.

Amy Poehler (#8 in Rolling Stone, tied for #11 overall) achieved post-SNL success as the leading actress in the hit show ?Parks and Recreation.? She won an Emmy with Tina Fey when they came back to SNL as hosts and has received nine other nominations. She starred in one feature film and had the voice acting lead in Inside Out. She pursued other roles in the industry, including directing, writing and producing. ? Average = 8.25

Starters: Great depth and chemistry, as the superstars made other cast members better, including Tracy Morgan, Maya Rudolph, Jimmy Fallon, Rachel Dratch, Ana Gasteyer, Horatio Sanz, Chirs Parnell, Chris Kattan, and Darrell Hammond. Seven cast members went on to star in TV series or films. ? 9.5

Bench: Seth Meyers (eventually a starter, #28 in Rolling Stone, #46 in IMDB), Jeff Richards and Dean Edwards. ? 7

Writers: Tina Fey, Louis C.K., Robert Smigel, Charles Grandy, Michael Schur, and Lorne Michaels won an Emmy for best writing ? 9

Producer: Lorne Michaels ? 10

Final rating: 8.75

#2. 1992?1993

Phil Hartman?s brilliance will shine on forever.

Superstars: Phil Hartman (8.75), Chris Farley (8.25), Mike Myers (7.75), Carvey (7.25)

Phil Hartman (ranked #7 by Rolling Stone, #4 overall) upset Eddie Murphy to reach the Finals of the Grantland SNL bracket game and a 1st team All-SNL member. He was both the glue of the show, adding his professional presence to every sketch, and could play the lead, using his multifaceted voice for impersonations and to create memorable characters. He won an Emmy for his performances on SNL. After he left the show, Hartman did voice-over work on The Simpsons and starred in Newsradio, garnering another Emmy nomination, but his career was tragically cut short.

The rule of three is a foundation for all writing, and especially humor. Unfortunately, it doesn?t apply to movies (The Godfather III, and The Matrix Revolutions), and nobody ever mentioned that fact to Mike Myers.

Myers (ranked #4 by Rolling Stone, #7 overall) might have been on the Mount Rushmore of SNL comedy had he not been the master of overkill. He created memorable SNL characters and three film franchises (Wayne?s World, Austin Powers, and Shrek), made boatloads of money, and then vanished from the scene after 2002.

Because his work on SNL doesn?t hold up as well as Phil Hartman, and his films never received the same critical acclaim as those of Dan Aykroyd, he dropped just below them.

Chris Farley (ranked #15 by Rolling Stone, tied for #9 overall) and his brand of awkward and impulsive physical comedy made him a fan favorite and led to a number of popular films, including Tommy Boy, Black Sheep, and Beverly Hills Ninja. His tragic death shortened his career

Dana Carvey (ranked #11 by Rolling Stone, tied for #11 overall) was best known for his impressions on SNL, earning him an Emmy for best performance in a Variety or Music Program, and a total of six Emmy nominations. He turned down the lead for the Michael Bay movie ?Bulletproof Hearts? because he felt overwhelmed as a new father. (That movie was renamed Bad Boys and recast with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence.) Like Myers, he withdrew from the public scene, preferring to spend time with his family and do some stand-up comedy at lucrative corporate dates. His relative lack of success post-SNL dropped his rating a little. ? Average = 8

Starters: This SNL cast was the equivalent of 2012 Oklahoma City Thunder ? they didn?t properly value and use potential superstar Chris Rock (ranked #21 by Rolling Stone, #32 by IMDB, and #18 by Business Insider). He was frustrated during his time on the show, and eventually fired, but went on to become one of the best stand-up comedians in the world, winning four Emmys and fifteen other nominations for his comedy specials and hosting the Oscars, plus three Grammys for his comedy albums. If Rock had been utilized properly, this would be the only team with FIVE Top 15 players.

Kevin Nealon and Rob Schneider were also solid starters to go along with the Big 3. ? 8.5

Bench: The greatest bench in history with Adam Sandler, David Spade, Tim Meadows, Al Franken, and Robert Smigel ? 10

Writers: Franken and Davis, Meadows, Sandler, Spade, Smigel, and Lorne Michaels were nominated for an Emmy for best writing ? 8

Producer: Lorne Michaels ? 10

Final rating: 8.9

And the winner is?

#1. 1978?1979

Superstars: Bill Murray (9.5), John Belushi (9.25), Dan Aykroyd (9), Gilda Radner (7.75)

The Blues Brothers, one of SNL?s most iconic actsBill Murray and Gilda Radner shine as Aykroyd and Belushi play it straight

This is the holy trinity of 1970s comedy and the greatest Big 4 in SNL history when you add Gilda Radner. If we average the three different cast member ranking systems I tried (see below), all three comedians are 1st Team All-SNL and on the Mount Rushmore of SNL.

If Eddie Murphy is the Michael Jordan of SNL, Bill Murray is Kareem Abdul Jabbar, with sustained excellence in his long career. As an SNL cast member, he had the lowest ranking of this group (#6 in Rolling Stone, #6 overall). But Murray?s career includes three of the top 10 best-reviewed films with a former SNL player in the lead: Groundhog Day, Ghostbusters, and Lost in Translation. In addition, he had huge comedy hits with Caddie Shack and Stripes, Totsie, Scrooged and What About Bob?

In 1977, Murray won an Emmy for writing on SNL, another for best supporting actor in the TV mini-series Olive Kitteridge. In 2004, he received an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. In 2016, he was awarded the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. In 2017, he co-wrote and acted in A Murray Christmas, which was nominated for best TV movie. That kind of longevity and acting range had to put him ahead of some higher-rated cast members.

Belushi (ranked #1 by Rolling Stone, #2 overall) might be the most iconic SNL cast member, but got knocked out by Bill Murray in the Grantland SNL bracket game, which pitted cast members from the same generation against each other. Belushi?s movie Animal House is the greatest college comedy of all time ranked as the #4 comedy overall by Rolling Stone and was the movie that changed comedy. His partnership with Dan Aykroyd as the Blues Brothers made him a star in music and in films. His tragic death cut short an amazing career.

Aykroyd (ranked #5 by Rolling Stone, #3 in weighted rating and #4 in Olympic scoring) lost to Murphy in the Grantland SNL Bracket. He joined Belushi to create the Blue Brothers, the comedic musical duo that spawned three albums and a movie. Aykroyd was a co-writer and actor in movies like The Blues Brothers, Ghostbusters and Dragnet. He was nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in Driving Miss Daisy and was praised for his roles in Trading Places, Tommy Boy, Grosse Pointe Blank and The Curse of the Jade Scorpion. There?s no way he can be ranked below his fellow Blues Brother. Aykroyd range as a comedian went from understated and dry to the comedy of the absurd. In one show, Guest host Eric Idle of Monty Python said that Aykroyd?s ability to write and act out characters flawlessly made him the only member of the SNL cast capable of being a Python.

Gilda Radner made the All-SNL Second Team (#9 by Rolling Stone, #9 overall) and is the fourth superstar of this group. She created some of the most memorable characters in the show?s history, including Roseanne Roseannadanna, Emily Latella, and Lisa Loopner, and was one of only a handful of cast members to win an Emmy for acting on SNL. Those characters were integral to her successful one-woman show on Broadway. She also won a Grammy for ?Best Spoken Word Or Non-Musical Recording?. If her life hadn?t been tragically cut short, she might have climbed the Mount Rushmore of SNL to join her three colleagues. ? Average = 8.875

Starters: Jane Curtin (#47 by Rolling Stone, #35 by IMDB, and #20 by Ranker) is overlooked and underrated because she played the straight woman opposite Belushi and Aykroyd. Her deadpan delivery was so good, she took over Weekend Update after Chevy Chase left the show. After SNL, she won two Emmys for best leading actress in a comedy show and had two other nominations, starred in 1993 film, The Coneheads, and had a leading role in 3rd Rock from the Sun.

Garrett Morris (Closed Captioning) and Laraine Newman (the Conehead daughter) also made solid comedy contributions. ? 9

Bench: Al Franken (eventual starter, #20 in Rolling Stone, and #44 IMDB) and Tom Davis ? 7.125

Writers: Aykroyd, Franken and Davis, Brian Doyle-Muray, and Lorne Michaels were part of a team that won two Emmys in a row for best writing and their fourth straight Emmy nomination by the 1979 season. ? 10

Producer: Lorne Michaels ? 10

Final rating: 9


1. Ranking Sources

Rolling Stone: John Belushi, Murphy, Fey, Myers, Aykroyd, Murray, Hartman, Poehler, Radner, Chase, Carvey, Ferrell, Hader, Wiig, Farley, Dratch, Sandler, Rudolph, Lovitz, Franken, Rock, Samberg, Armisen, Newman, Sudeikis, Hooks, Spade, Meyers, Short, Crystal

Business Insider: Murray, John Belushi, Murphy, Hartman, Ferrell, Aykroyd, Farley, Fey, Myers, Carvey, Radner, Sandler, Poehler, Wiig, Chase, Fallon, Hader, Rock, Short, Lovitz, Macdonald, Crystal, Spade, Sudeikis, Hammond

(Note: This 2015 article celebrating the 40th anniversary of SNL, used Ranker.com rankings at the time to help determine their ratings)

Ranker: Ferrell, Murphy, Aykroyd, Farley, Murray, Hartman, Hader, Carvey, John Belushi, Radner, Myers, Fey, Poehler, Wiig, Sandler, McKinnon, Rock, Spade, Samberg, Curtin, Shannon, Chase, Rudolph, McDonald, Short, Lovitz, Thompson, Crystal, Sudeikis, Meadows, Morgan, Hammond, Fallon, Schneider, Oteri, Dratch, Nealon, Armisen, Strong, Newman, Morris, Forte, Gasteyer, Louis-Dreyfus, Bayer, Miller, Moynihan, Hooks, Parnell, Kattan

(Current Ranker ratings as of 4/17/20)

IMDB: Murphy, Ferrell, Murray, John Belushi, Hartman, Aykroyd, Farley, Myers, Carvey, Fey, Radner, Poehler, Sandler, Chase, Hammond, Wiig, Meadows, Lovitz, Hooks, MacDonald, Dratch, Samberg, Hader, Morgan, Short, Rudolph, Parnell, Kattan, Shannon, Fallon

TV Guide: Ferrell, Hartman, Poehler, Murphy, Farley, Myers, Radner, Belushi, Wiig, Shannon, Carvey, Chase, Fey, Murray, Dratch, Rudolph, Hooks, Hader, Rock, Gasteyer, Aykroyd, Hammond, Oteri, Sandler, Curtin, Samberg, Nealon, Dunn, Sudeikis, Hutsell, Thompson, McKinnon

Goliath: Murphy, John Belushi, Aykroyd, Myers, Farley, Radner, Ferrell, Fey, Murray, Hartman, Chase, Carvey, Oteri, Crystal, Shannon, Hooks, Piscopo, Curtin, Sandler, Hammond

Paste: Murphy, Ferrell, Hartman, John Belushi, Aykroyd, Radner, Carvey, Poehler, Fey, Hader, Farley, Murray, Morgan, Lovitz, Samberg, Wiig, Myers, Hooks, Forte, MacDonald, Chase, Curtin, Thompson, Hammond, Miller

Bonus Points

Final rankings were then adjusted for performers who were recognized by their peers in the industry.

In order of importance:

The Oscars

Only four cast members have been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor/Actress:

Dan Aykroyd (Driving Miss Daisy, 1989)

Bill Murray (Lost in Translation, 2003)

Eddie Murphy (Dreamgirls, 2007)

Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids, 2011)

The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor

Only six cast members have won this honor, in addition to 2004 winner Lorne Michaels:

Tiny Fey (2010), Will Ferrell (2011), Eddie Murphy (2015), Bill Murray (2016)

Billy Crystal (2007) and Julia Louis-Dreyfus (2018) were ranked too low to be considered for an All-SNL Team

The Emmy

Only five people have garnered Emmy consideration for writing or acting in series outside of SNL (All-SNL Team member in bold):

Julia Louis-Dreyfus (11 wins, 24 nominations)

Chevy Chase (3 wins, 5 nominations) Hall of Fame 2017

Bill Hader (2 wins, 6 nominations)

Jane Curtin (2 wins, 5 nominations) Hall of Fame 2017

Tina Fey (1 win, 7 nominations)

Phil Hartman (1 win, 2 nominations)

Amy Poehler (1 win, 8 nominations)

The Grammy

Only four SNL cast members have won a Grammy for best comedy album or spoken word (All-SNL Team members in bold):

Chris Rock (3), Al Franken (2), Gilda Radner (1), Eddie Murphy (1)

Final Notes

I stayed as close to the weighted average ranking as much as possible. Here are the main exceptions:

  1. I put Murray ahead or Ferrell because of his appearance in highly rated films, and their wider range as actors.
  2. Belushi was rated above of Ferrell on both the weighted and unweighted average ratings, although Ferrell got two first-place votes to Belushi?s one.
  3. Chris Farley was rated higher than Mike Myers in five of the seven ranking lists, even though he was ranked lower on the weighted rankings.

If you got this far, thanks for reading, because this article almost feels as long as the show itself.

On the other hand, it?s only 100 words per year the show has been on the air.

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Here?s to stopping the virus: vote on November 3rd


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