NBC Reclaims 'Saturday Night' Video

By Mike Musgrove
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, February 18, 2006

Don't go looking for the "Lazy Sunday" video from "Saturday Night Live" at YouTube.com any more -- it's Ghost like Swayze.

To put that in plain English, a popular clip from the long-running NBC program has been pulled off the Web site that helped spur the show's latest pop culture splash.

In December, "Saturday Night Live" aired a video featuring performers Chris Parnell and Andy Samberg, striding the streets of New York City on a Sunday afternoon quest to see the movie "The Chronicles of Narnia." Accompanied by a gangsta rap beat, the two plot their course on an Internet map service and pick up snacks while waving around a fistful of $10 bills. It's a comically non-epic tale, told with crazy rhymes and lame movie references such as the one about Patrick Swayze's "Ghost."

The video quickly became a hit among Web surfers who missed it on TV but were able to see the two-minute bit at YouTube.com, a site that lets Web surfers post streaming videos for free and includes some adult content.

Since then, the clip has been downloaded over 5 million times at YouTube.com and has inspired a wave of knockoff videos and T-shirts. The clip became a hit download at Apple's iTunes music and video store. In short, "Lazy Sunday" gave SNL a quick burst of hipster credibility the show hasn't enjoyed much of lately.

This is where the lawyers come in. Earlier this week, NBC asked YouTube.com to take the video down. Web surfers wanting to see the clip yet again will have to go to NBC.com, where the network has posted a copy.

Bloggers -- the ones who made the video a hit in the first place -- are grumbling that "Lazy Sunday" now doesn't play on non-Windows computers. Fortunately, NBC's lawyers evidently don't know about Google Video yet. Whoops.

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