Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

David Koechner Explains His Too-Short Stay on 'SNL'

David Koechner was able to do a lot in his first and only year on SNL so when he didn't come back for a second season, it was a surprise. (Though, it wasn't a terribly audible surprise, since it was the mid 90s and there really wasn't a venue such as this to complain about SNL). In a recent interview he explained what happened:

I said "no" to a couple of things on the show, which they don't like. And it was the first year that there was late night competition. My first year was the first year that MADtv came on the scene and Howard Stern was doing a late night show. So, ratings dipped a little bit. And there was a whole new cast. It was the first time in probably 20 years that the West Coast had an ability to strong arm Lorne. And Lorne had no interest in letting me go — he wanted to keep me. But there was a guy named Don Ohlmeyer out on NBC West Coast who wasn't a fan of mine and he wanted me off.

And what exactly did he say "no" to? He continued:

Well, they wanted one of my characters to do a talk show. And I was of the opinion that that's what was wrong with the show. "We've got too many talk shows! We need to do more scenes!"

The overuse of the talk show format is one of the most popular complaints levied on SNL so it’s interesting to see it be a point of conflict on the inside. Koechner is another on the list of brilliant comedians who just didn't work best with SNL's structure. Still, he seems to be doing alright on the outside, especially with next year's return of Champ Kind. Until then, watch one of his more memorable characters from SNL below:

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  • http://bjdwsm.wordpress.com Ben

    Has Don Ohlmeyer actually made a desicion that would have helped SNL?

  • http://twitter.com/ericoso Eric Cardoso

    Very related, from Deidre Ann Davis' interview with Charna Halpern:

    "I mean, Koechner. What a guy. When he was at Saturday Night Live, he called me one night and he said “Be sure to watch the show and stay ‘til the end.” And I go “Ok.” I watched the show and at the end he’s wearing an iO t-shirt which he took and he reversed because it’s iO on the back and he pointed and when they were all saying goodnight, he actually walked up to the camera and blocked everything out but the iO and I thought “He’s gonna get fired” and he eventually did. I don’t know if it’s because of that but I wouldn’t be surprised."


  • HardAsIs

    Sooo the same guy that fired Norm MacDonald fired Koechner? Anything else, Don? Want to fire Kristen Wiig before she can quit?