| Comedy |

Remembering Gilda Radner

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

"I don't get what you see in Gilda Radner," I was surprised to hear my friend say. He was one of my first friends in college, and we had connected because we could both recite classic Saturday Night Live lines by rote. Still, he had his favorites (usually Mike Myers and Dan Ackroyd), I had mine (Gilda Radner and frequent SNL guest Madeline Kahn).

Looking back, I realize I couldn't tell him why I thought she was funny; to me, it was obvious in her overblown characters like Roseann Roseannadanna, Baba Wawa and the hyperactive Brownie Scout. Her enthusiasm, versatility and complete lack of self-consciousness are what caused her to stand out against her other female co-stars, the straight-laced Jane Curtin and perpetually dazed Laraine Newman.

But what I saw in Gilda Radner was the future: Molly Shannon's overly enthusiastic Mary Catherine Gallagher, Tina Fey's farcical interpretation of Sarah Palin, and even Myers' Philip, The Hyper-Hypo kid. And it was my friend's loss that he didn't see it too.

Radner died 22 years ago today, and while many have picked up where she left off, I still haven't seen anyone better. Here are some of here most memorable comedic moments.

Roseanne Roseannadanna

Roseanne grosses out Jane for the last time.

The Judy Miller Show Because at some point, every little girl ends up marrying her teddy bear.

Emily Litella The hard-of-hearing librarian disses Jane.

Barbara Walters Interviews Marlene Dietrich Gilda + Madeline = No wrong.

The Way We Were as Lisa Loopner

No one can do simultaneous poignancy and hilarity quite like Gilda.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.