Picks and Pans Review: Live! from New York! Bees!

updated 03/07/1994 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/07/1994 AT 01:00 AM EST

In its Oct. 11 premiere, NBC's Saturday Night Live didn't exactly scream, "This show will redefine American comedy!" Producer Lorne Michaels remembers that a skit featuring his young, unsung cast in bee costumes didn't get much of a response from the studio audience. "It was a touch conceptual," he admits. But the bees lived to hum again, as a recurring sketch, and over the years a dozen stars have buzzed off from the SNL hive, including Chevy Chase, Eddie Murphy, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Dana Carvey and the late, lamented John Belushi, who initially hated the bee thing. "He just felt it was undignified," says Michaels, 49. "And he was probably correct."


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