In a recent episode of the Fly on the Wall podcast, comedian David Spade, renowned for his wit, shared an amusing anecdote from his time at Saturday Night Live (SNL). The story takes us back to a November 1991 episode hosted by Macaulay Culkin, with the enigmatic David Bowie and his band Tin Machine as the musical guests.
Spade, co-hosting the podcast with Dana Carvey, delved into a sketch he had penned, revealing his ingenuity. In the sketch, Spade envisioned himself playing a snobbish receptionist who exudes an air of superiority. However, his plan took an unexpected twist when he received a message to contact Bowie at his hotel. Astonishingly, Bowie had taken a keen interest in the sketch and wanted to be a part of it.
As reported by Hollywood Reporter – Describing the surreal conversation, Spade said, “I called him and he answers and it’s f*cking Bowie.” The rock legend found the sketch hilarious and astonishingly relatable, as it mirrored the characters he encountered in his life. Bowie proposed a swap of roles, suggesting he play the receptionist and Spade take on his persona. His reasoning? Bowie thought being himself in the sketch was a tad dull for the audience, considering his ubiquitous image. The singer argued that the real punchline was Spade as Bowie, the receptionist.
Despite the honor and Bowie’s earnest request, Spade revealed he had to decline. His motive was rooted in the hope that the character would become a recurring feature. The comedian, ever in pursuit of comedic gold, couldn’t help but entertain the possibility.
Bowie’s persistence shone through, as he contemplated the scenario, even mentioning, “What if the sketch never gets on [the show]?” Reflecting on Bowie’s acute understanding of the SNL landscape, Spade humorously mused, “God, how do you know this show this well?”
In the end, the sketch didn’t make it to the show. And the ripple effect was tangible; not only did Spade’s sketch fail to make the cut, but he also found himself missing from other sketches throughout the episode. In his own words, Spade lamented, “The rest of the week I wasn’t in the show and I was like, ‘Fuck.'”
However, the exchange left no bad blood between the two talents. Bowie, known for his grace, approached Spade during the goodbyes, expressing his understanding. The exchange was emblematic of Bowie’s humility and ability to acknowledge his response, as he said, “Hey, sorry, man…I get what was going on and I shouldn’t have been, like, a little chilly about it.”