In a world with a 24-hour news cycle and the ability to update followers in 140 characters every few seconds, is there such a thing as "too soon?" Saturday Night Live might test the limits of those archaic words this weekend when one of its most-uproarious veterans, Maya Rudolph, hosts the venerable show. Rumor has it that SNL writers and producers are considering writing a sketch around one of Maya's most well-known celebrity impersonations, Whitney Houston.
With Whitney's funeral set for Saturday across the river from 30 Rock in Newark, the timing could be even more delicate.
But Michael Slezak at Deadline imagines a few sketches in which a "too soon" Whitney sketch might actually be tasteful:
1 | Whitney judges The Voice from heaven | Sure, NBC’s buzzy singing competition doesn’t feature any “bad” vocalists, but what about when you compare ‘em to the woman who was frequently referred to as “THE VOICE”? Who better to point guns of harsh truth at the wannabes tackling “I Will Always Love You” and “I Have Nothing” — and maybe bring a copyright-infringement suit against the show and network itself?
2 | Or alternately, Whitney descends from heaven to heckle Jennifer Lopez judging American Idol |Imagine one of the most celebrated power balladeers in music history having a laugh over the tinny-voiced dancer sitting in judgment of other singers? This one’s almost too easy.
(Head to Deadline to read Michale's two other suggestions for SNL writers.)
Despite the conjecture, a rep for the show refuses to expand on the possibility. “As you know, the show never comments on potential show content,” said the spokesperson. “As Maya impersonated Whitney, it’s a natural question, but one [to which] we do not have an answer.”
What do you think, Instincters? Is it too soon for SNL and Maya to produce a Whitney Houston sketch, even if done tastefully? Or could a tribute that inspires us to laugh (often said to be the best medicine) in a sensitive manner actually work?