When Paula Abdul introduced the much-anticipated scandal-deflating sketch about her dalliance with Idol contestant Corey Clark at the start of SNL last Saturday, she said, “What you’re about to see is a reenactment of some events of this week’s biggest news story. All the facts have been changed to get laughs at my expense. I hope you enjoy it.” She might as well have said, “It’s not that funny,” because saying something is going to be funny is humor’s kiss of death. According to the TV columnist at the Washington Post, probably the only person who found the tame sketch amusing was Corey Clark, who had appeared earlier that night on Fox News Channel’s At Large with Geraldo Rivera, and then had gone with Rivera to a nearby bar for beers and to watch his former mentor on SNL while At Large cameras recorded his reaction for airing the next night.
“That was funny as hell,” Clark said. “That was funny. That was funny as hell. Good job, Paula! That was amazing. That was better than being spoofed on Jay Leno . . . and she was cool, she was cool.”
Page Six says Abdul was scheduled to appear in three sketches, but agreed only to the opening number. Apparently, there had been nervous sobbing hours before airing. “Abdul, who appeared stiff and uncomfortable during the sketch, was said to have been upset with the way it turned out,” reports the tab. “‘She was not happy with it,’ one Abdul pal told us yesterday.”