Alec Baldwin set a “Saturday Night Live” hosting record Saturday night, with a little help from the “SNL” season 1 vet that he surpassed – Steve Martin.
Baldwin hosted “SNL” for the 16th time. In his monologue that opened the 37th season of the show, he expressed confidence that Martin wouldn’t overtake him again.
“When you think about it, time is on my side. What is Steve, 100? So no matter how many times he hosts, I’ll catch up,” said Baldwin, who is about a decade younger. He said he and Martin are friends and noted, “when I hosted the Oscars, Steve was a big help.”
Then Martin bounded on stage, wearing a brown suite with a mustard-yellow shirt and light brown tie. “Well, aren’t we proud of ourselves,” he told Baldwin, who wore a dark suit with a light purple shirt and dark purple tie himself.
Martin claimed that he was just passing the studio in full makeup, and knew Baldwin was about to break his record.
“I wanted to make sure you were doing it without steroids or performance-enhancing drugs,” Martin said.
“Oh, that’s ridiculous. I’m hosting it completely steroid-free,” the "30 Rock" star replied, before assenting to a drug test with Martin’s medical team, led by his “expert on drug use,” Seth Rogen.
After Baldwin left and returned with a urine sample, Martin took it and drank it, analyzing its chemical composition, including “Cialis for daily use.”
Then Martin genuinely congratulated Baldwin – launching “Saturday Night Live” on its 37th season.
Just beforehand, the 2011-2012 premiere began with a faux but on-target GOP presidential debate. Baldwin played Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
“I believe Social Security is a Ponzi scheme. I believe we need to build a fence to keep the illegals out,” he said, but should any illegal immigrants pass through into the U.S., “we should pay for their education.”
Mitt Romney (Fred Armisen) said he’s not a perfect candidate – “but next to Rick Perry, I’m a perfect candidate.” He compared himself to all the other contenders, saying, “Next to John Huntsman it gets tricky because we’re both Mormons and have similar haircuts.”
Herman Cain (Kenan Thompson) plugged his pizza credentials – “If you vote for me America, I promise you that I will deliver” – before Baldwin attempted “to attack Mitt Romney as a flip flopper,” but gradually slumped down onto his podium, head on his arms, snoring.
The show also featured a morose “All My Children” wrap party, where Baldwin appeared as Susan Lucci’s husband.
British indie-rock innovators Radiohead played “Lotus Flower," the first single of the band's most recent album "The King of Limbs." The band later played "Staircase," with two matching bald-headed drummers backing a gyrating Thom Yorke.