Seth Meyers shed no tears for Norm Macdonald on Tuesday night, but not because he wasn’t devastated by the tragic news of his fellow “Weekend Update” anchor’s sudden passing at the age of 61 after a long and secret cancer fight.
As the Late Night host put it, Macdonald wouldn’t have wanted to hear anything “sentimental,” but Meyers did spend several minutes remembering some of the funniest things the late comedian ever said.
Among them was the first time Meyers met Macdonald backstage at Saturday Night Live in 2001, when Meyers was just a young cast member on the show. When someone asked Macdonald how his newfound fatherhood was going, he replied, “It’s going great. Still no abductions.”
Macdonald, who by many accounts was the all-time best anchor in SNL’s 46-year history, was also responsible for Meyers’ all-time favorite “Weekend Update” joke. Reporting that the richest girl in the world had just celebrated her 10th birthday, Macdonald asked, “What’s it like to be the richest girl in the world? Well, to give you some idea, at the party they had two cakes.”
Meyers channeled Macdonald’s signature deadpan delivery when he shared that punchline and readily admitted that when he first started anchoring “Weekend Update” in 2006, he had to “beat Norm’s delivery” out of him so that he wasn’t just doing a poor imitation of the comedian. The kicker came when Macdonald revealed that his son was watching SNL back then and told him, “You talk like Seth Meyers.”
But, of course, Macdonald got the last laugh, telling Meyers, “Oh no, my son doesn’t know how time works.”
“He was the gold standard and he will continue to be the gold standard,” Meyers concluded.
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