85. “Thank you, Don Novello.”

The episode:Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell,” ep. 703

The riff: Sincerely offered by Mike as an oddly Italian-sounding “warrior from hell” offers some advice to the movie’s hero, Deathstalker.

The explanation: Don Novello is an American comic, director and writer who is remembered as a writer for the early days of SNL, from seasons 3-5 and also 11. He was also a producer for “SCTV” in Canada. As a performer, he was known for the character of “Father Guido Sarducci” that he created, an odd, sunglasses-wearing Catholic priest who served in America as a gossip and rock music critic for The Roman Observer newspaper. The character in the movie has an odd way of speaking that is similar to Novello as Sarducci.

Novelty factor: I’d never heard of the guy before, I have to admit. After watching some of his Sarducci skits though, I think he’s rather hilarious. The “five minute university” sketch posted below is great, and just as relevant today as it was in 1980.

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2 thoughts on “85. “Thank you, Don Novello.”

  1. My favorite (or most memorable, anyway) was when the Pope visited the US. One of his “bits” on SNL was a game he was promoting: Find the Pope in the pizza.

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