Looking Back at '08: Poehler v. Palin Maternity
Among, you know, other things, 2008 will be remembered as the year that Saturday Night Live became relevant (and funny) again. Ms. Tina Fey, obviously, has been coronated as the savior (just see January's Vanity Fair cover). Her spot-on impersonations of Sarah Palin may very well go down as the apex of SNL political satire. But Palin, of course, was the comedic gift that just kept on giving. Fey's genius aside, we shouldn't forget that much of what was so hilarious (and scary) about the sketches were that most of them were Palin's words verbatim.
Getting less worship is Amy Poehler, whose belly grew alongside the election's momentum. There was just a little bump when she told journalists to "grow some balls" in the Hillary/Palin skit. By the time she sat side by side with the real Sarah Palin and did her “Palin Rap”, she was big as a house and days away from going into labor.
Like Stephen Colbert, who was the only member of the media to have the balls to ridicule George Bush to his face, Poehler sang the gamut of Palin’s imbecilic mots, lies and spurious slanders right across the table from the VP candidate. And like Bush, Palin didn't seem to get that she wasn't being ribbed or roasted, she was being field-dressed (and then roasted -- like a lip-sticked pig on a spicket.)
Poehler’s strength, power and midnight energy at 9-months pregnant is, to me, a role model of (dare I say it?) the empowering integration of brain and uterus. Palin's trotting out of her soccer momminess as VP experience was faux feminism and cynical political theater.
Poehelr's full-term pregnant rap performance mocked the hollowness of the Palin campaign. (“When I say ‘Obama’ you say ‘Ayers’). By this late stage in her pregnancy and in the election season, the Republican campaign was going belly up; Poehler and her ginormous tummy embodied the culmination of the ballooning Obama glee and the birthing of a new nation.
So happy birthday baby Archie and peace to all in 2009. And let’s hope they find something funny to say about Obama, but let it be funny ha ha and not funny total bummer.