In the aftermath of Season 39, we’ve had a bit of a shake-up. We already knew that Nasim Pedrad would be leaving to take a starring role in a new sitcom. But in addition, three of last year’s featured players – Brooks Wheelan, Noel Wells and John Milhiser – have been let go. Which, to me, is fine, because there were far too many people on stage vying for airtime. Even though I like all the departed performers, I’m happy to see the cast get reduced a bit to give those who are there a fairer chance.
However, its been announced that Lorne Michaels is already shopping around for new talent for next season to replace the exiting SNL cast members. NO! For frakk’s sake, there’s too many people already. Part of the reason that the three features who got fired never made a mark is because it simply wasn’t possible for all 19 players to get decent airtime. Its been this way for years, but this year seemed the worst.
However, I have come up with two solutions to this problem, two ways for the show to have its main cast carry the show, but develop new talent at the same time. My first suggestion is to keep the 90 minute format but have the main cast and writers create the first 60 minutes and the newbies take charge of the last 30. My other idea is to, rather than the pattern on 3 weeks on, 1 week off, have the newbies – cast, writers, directors, everything – produce a live show on that fourth week. So three weeks of main cast, established writers, and a fourth week of a live show where new writers and new players can flex their wings and show off what they bring to the show. The reward for them is that, in time, as main cast positions open up, these folks can get promoted.
Honestly, I lean towards the second model of three shows with main staff followed by one show with newbies. I’d be just as excited (maybe more) to see what the newbies would do to challenge the establishment. I think it’d be a worthy experiment.