TRENDING: Fey defends Palin impersonation
April 5th, 2011
08:34 AM ET
7 years ago

TRENDING: Fey defends Palin impersonation

(CNN) – Comedienne Tina Fey might be most well known for her 2008 portrayal of Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live – an impersonation that, to the detriment of the McCain campaign, led many to confuse Fey with the real thing.

But now Fey is defending her role as Palin amid critics who say she unfairly exploited the Alaska governor.

"Some may argue that exploiting Governor Palin and her family helped bring attention to my low-rated TV show," writes Fey of 30 Rock, the NBC show that has struggled in the ratings despite critical acclaim.

Fey's comments appear in her new memoir, "Bossypants," an advance copy of which was obtained by USA Today.

"I am proud to say you are wrong," she continues. "My TV show still enjoys very low ratings. In fact, I think the Palin stuff may have hurt the TV show. Let's face it, between Alec Baldwin and me there is a certain fifty percent of the population who think we are pinko Commie monsters."

Despite appearing at Fey's side on Saturday Night Live shortly before the 2008 presidential election, Palin has since made clear she is no fan of the actress that many believe defined the former Alaska governor more than anyone else.

In a 2009 interview with conservative John Ziegler, Palin said of Fey, "I know that a lot of people are capitalizing on, oh I don't know, perhaps some exploiting that was done via me, my family, my administration – that's a little bit perplexing, but it also says a great deal about our society."

Filed under: Sarah Palin • Tina Fey
soundoff (222 Responses)
  1. Bob

    Once again, thin-skinned Palin is whining. SNL made fun of Obama, McCain, and many other politicians over the years, and you don't hear them crying about it. If Palin can't stand the heat, she should stay in Alaska. As she would say, "Man up," Palin! BTW, NOBODY exploited Palin's family more than she did - and still does.

    April 5, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  2. Casual

    But, Ms. Palin, you make such an easy target do you not? You are your own worst enemy. You give out so much ammo, I'm quite sure you leave these writers and comics drooling.

    You constanly hand out gems like this quote about running for President: "Oh ya sure, you know, I'd run if nobody else is gonna do it, ya sure, I'd run" now there is some smarts in that comment concerning the most important job in the world.

    Wow, I think this woman needs to go home and get reaquainted with her Tribe O' Children who she never takes of, how could she? All I see her her EVERYWHERE but home. The Family Values party token memeber and all, and she has the family values of an alligator, wait, alligators stay with their young, skip it, I need coffee.....

    April 5, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  3. rick

    .....but it also says a great deal about our society." No Sarah, it only says that you are a bird brain. I must say though, you are much better looking than Tina Fey. By the way, do you think if you looked like Janet Reno you would have been picked by John McCain or by whoever shoved you down his throat? Unlikely!!

    April 5, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  4. Rudy NYC

    I do not understand that 2009 quote. Mrs. Palin is very good at capitalizing on the moment. She has capitalized at the fame of others, for the better or for the worse. She has tried to capitalize on her position as a political star to do actual political damage to others in the political arena.

    Actually, I do understand the quote. I am not going to call it hypocritical despite what I wrote above. Had she made the comment and then went out and capitalized, then that is being hypocritical. One must precede the other in my book.

    No, there is another more basic explanation that is found at the core of so many humans. It is instinctive to judge the actions of others by what we ourselves would do in that same situation. Our brains learns by association. We tend to judge by association and drawing comparisons. Actions which are inevitibly based upon ourselves and our own past experiences.

    Intelligence tries to teach us to rise out of being subjective and be more objective. For some, this task is more challenging than it is for others.

    April 5, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  5. jack

    It was Palin's own actions,reactions,etc. that made her look foolish. Just like in business, if one does stupid things,someones going to come in and take advantage of those blunders. Tina Fey did just that and did it very well. Also, who was at fault, were her advisors for not telling her the truth, that Fey was dead on. Mcain and his advisors also blundered and Obama and the country did him in.

    April 5, 2011 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  6. south side

    What's a "Sarah Palin"? Was she on some kind of Reality Show on MTV?

    April 5, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  7. Jesse

    Sarah Palin didn't have a problem when she went on SNL and appeared in a segment NEXT TO TINA FEY'S PALIN CHARACTER.

    She never lets reality get in the way of her victimhood. Somebody help her – she can't get her other hand nailed up.

    April 5, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  8. Obama 2012

    Fey is brilliant. Palin is an idiot.

    April 5, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  9. T'sah from Virginia

    ET – this is where this story belongs!!! NOT on the TICKER!! Either one of them – Fey or Palin – belongs in the Political Ticker!!! FAILIN' PALIN is NOT running for president and is only a celebrity – just like FEY!!

    April 5, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  10. John L

    Incredibly lame to blame Fey for Palin's failure to achieve a broader base of support. Fey didn't deter Palin's more dedicated fans nor whip up her more dedicated "anti-fans". Fey simply did waht commedians do namely poke fun at the inconsistancies of life and public figures. Ah well, it is the beginning of the election years circus.

    April 5, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  11. ABM

    Tina was spot on! Any critic of her characterization is just a crybaby.

    April 5, 2011 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  12. Clwyd

    How can you exploit someone or something that is meaningless and mindless?

    April 5, 2011 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  13. mr.stogie

    ...but it also says a great deal about our society."

    Yeah, it says you are a moron...

    April 5, 2011 09:19 am at 9:19 am |
  14. Mark

    It is unfortunate that a couple of appearances by a comedienne on a late night comedy show was able to change the voting habits of the entire nation....or maybe the nation realized that she simply ain't all that. Or maybe the Republicans learned they picked the wrong running mate for a good candidate.

    April 5, 2011 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  15. Genius

    How can you "unfairly exploit" someone who has entered the public eye and put her dysfunctional family on a reality TV show? There's only one person being exploitative here, and it's not Tina Fey.

    April 5, 2011 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  16. Just Sayin

    Whats the big deal... this is no different than Chevy Chase lampooning Gerald Ford .... or any of the SNL players that have always lampooned presidents and vice presidents alike.

    April 5, 2011 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  17. mark crain

    You wonder why her ratings our still low; typical hollywood people don't get it that we do not want to hear their point of view on politics.

    April 5, 2011 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  18. Levin

    Oh PLEASE! Ms. Palin felt SO exploited that she appeared on the show along with Tina Fey, to show just HOW exploited she felt and how much that exposure hurt her and her poor family.

    April 5, 2011 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  19. bp

    This woman is crazy, what administration? oh yeah thats right she did have half of one until she quit, still lol

    April 5, 2011 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  20. Jay

    Defend? Hey if somebody stupid accepts the national spotlight and is utterly unfit, then it is absolutely deserved the ridicule that comes.

    Tina, you're beautiful and funny (and rich) and you expose Palin for the idiot that she is. Marry me please, please, please!!!

    April 5, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  21. Doug

    It does say a great deal about half our society that everyone of 'dem fully supported Sandra Berhard's comment about wanting Sarah Palin to be raped in NYC. Sorry, no such thing as a republican equievilent, not a single person on the right is as nasty.

    April 5, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  22. Wes B.

    A politician being spoofed on SNL. How dare they. Clearly they've gone out of their way to pick this ONE SINGLE POLITICIAN and make fun of her.

    I know they'd never do that to anyone else.

    April 5, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  23. Grundoon

    That Bailin' Palin ever garnered significan't suport, now thankfully dwindling, says a lot about our society. That statement is: See what happens when you sacrifice education funding? You get a populace that is dumb as dirt that supports this airhead.

    April 5, 2011 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  24. Dave

    Give me a break. Tina Fey is a successful comedian; Sarah Palin is a washed up, embittered former VP candidate who picks fights with everyone and never wins.

    Typical childish nonsense from right wing dingbats who have nothing better to do. Of course, right wing, tea party dingbats don't need comedians. They have republican presidential candidates. Now there is great comedy.

    April 5, 2011 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  25. JasonP

    Palin, you are such a whining little baby. Shut up you moron.

    April 5, 2011 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
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