That was a traumatic moment for many Americans. 9/11 put Sinead's actions in this clip somewhat in perspective.
It's been 20 years since she did this. I remember the outrage. I have a feeling that if this were to be done today, the response might be more of a "meh" in the U.S.
THANK YOU, OP!
That was even more tense than I imagined it being.
OP, that's been available for ages.
I still remember when they came back from break, they had a darkened theater with the host explaining that something happen, they apologize, and it won't be seen again. It might have been done for the rerun. I can't remember, but you would have thought someone shot someone in the studio.
Personally at the time my response was Hell YEAH! Listen to her people.
She was ahead of her time.
Yes R6, and she suffered for it...
Ex-Pope Sidious is probably the most-mocked Pope in the history of the Church.
I wonder if it was taped in an empty theater, because you don't hear anyone cough, clap or boo. Then they came back from break and apologized, pretending it was all a shock- to excuse themselves from responsibility?
Lorne being a Jew would have no reason to be offended. And perhaps a condition of her agreeing to do the show (she was very popular then) was her request to do the song?
No, everyone was just stunned. It was one of those times you literally couldn't believe what you had just seen, whether you approved or condemned.
I love Sinead. And she was right!
I lost respect for SNL when they didn't back her up, and haven't really ever felt the same about it since.
Madonna mocked it months later on SNL.
They didn't apologize that night. O'Connor was even onstage at the end though some say Tim Robbins (the host) didn't acknowledge her.
The week after, Joe Pesci said he would have slapped her in his opening monologue and had the picture taped up.
Then a few weeks after that, Jan Hooks cameo'd as O'Connor in a couple of skits, one being "Sinead O'Connor's Good-Time Jamboree" where she had a green bow on her head, got booed, cried and Kris Kristofferson walked her off (like at the Dylan concert.) Then they had Hooks as Sinead trying to explain why she did it, making no sense and saying it was the devil.
They should put the whole damn thing on DVD and then invite her back. It's been 21 years. She was right.
People may have been shocked in the auditorium but the production people were told not to light the applause sign so they weren't even sure if it was over yet.
I watched "Mea Maxima Culpa:The Silence of the Holy Church" on HBO over the weekend. I thought about Sinead's SNL moment when they were talking about how much church attendance in Ireland has dropped, since so many molestation cases have come forward in the last decade.
Father Murphy molesting over 200 boys during his reign over the School for the Deaf in Boston is just a staggering statistic.
I agree with R6, Sinead's act of defiance against the church was prescient.
And hey, she was absolutely right.
Who does Joe Pesci think he is? This is a person who plays psychotic criminals for a living.
Well, Pesci said something along the lines of, "I woulda slapped herrrrr..." and the audience cheered wildly.
Michaels must have ordered the "applause" sign lit for that part.
Joe Pesci is out to get Edward James Olmos for allegedly making inappropriate sexual gestures against his daughter (whom he had with Lorraine Braco). I wonder if he's changed his tune now that he knows the popes' roles in covering for kiddie fuckers.
She was vilified (as per usual with women) and she was absolutely fucking right.
I remember Madonna commented around that time that it sure is risky to challenge people's belief system in that way. And I was like, bitch please.
At that time people still were under the thumb of the Christian Church and a lot of celebrities made money off their Christian family value image. Of course any threat or challenging opinion by a man or woman was vilified.
That's Harvey Keitel R19, not Joe Pesci.
And I remember reading that when Madonna mocked it, she tore up a photo of Joey Buttafuoco when apparently his young daughter was in the audience that night.
Did anyone including the SNL creator issue an apology about how they treated O'Connor after the incident?
No matter how nuts she is now and will be, O'Connor will always have my respect. She said what needed to be said, even if it wasn't the most diplomatic way to do it.
Already posted--she was fucking right.
As soon as she did it, I started jumping up and down and cheering for her.
Popes are evil front men for an evil multinational corporation.
[quote]That's Harvey Keitel [R19], not Joe Pesci.
That's right! I always confuse the two.
How is that possible, r28? Have we ever seen Joe Pesci's cock (please, let the answer be no).
I remember watching Sinead doing this live on TV and thinking how cool it was. I was blown away by all the backlash.
Madonna was just pissed that Sinead had caused a real scandal and not a manufactured one like Madonna was trying to do with the release of SEX a few weeks later.
Like others said, Sinead was right, and time has proven that. I watched this live that night and I admired how brave she was.
It was a different world in '92 - there was still a reverence for the Catholic Church and religion in general that is not as strong today, as older generations have died off or gone senile and younger generations have become more enlightened. Not to mention all the pedophile scandals that the Catholic Church has had.
If Lady Gaga ripped up a picture of the Pope on SNL in 2013, it wouldn't be much of a controversy. But back in '92, it was a total shitstorm and Sinead O'Connor was pretty much over as a result.
Madonna can't have liked that Sinead was talking about genuine physical and emotional damage inflicted on a population over centuries, not Madonna's petty concerns.
[quote]Madonna was just pissed that Sinead had caused a real scandal and not a manufactured one like Madonna was trying to do with the release of SEX a few weeks later.
I don't get all this hatred for the Catholic Church. I'm not Catholic so I don't get how Sinead has all these crazy reactions to it. Or anyone else. I'm not Catholic, I don't GAFF.
Sinead and Madonna are both dramaqueens about it.
R34, read a good history of the Catholic church in Ireland. Either that or quit posting when you don't know a damn thing about the subject. All you do is prove you're stupid.
Sinead is often eccentric, and has had personal issues. She's certainly been in tabloids for unconventional behavior.
And although I love her music, I get that some people don't.
But she's always had my respect because she's been very consistent about this issue.
She's been talking about this for years, not just once to get attention. She may not always do things in a socially acceptable way, but you can't say she doesn't care.
I don't remember this from when the program broadcast, but I just now noticed that she is holding a red, yellow and green African banner. I wondered if she was trying to send a message about the thousands of young African women, thought to be virgins, who were raped.
Local priests and Catholic church hierarchy were found to be a well-represented contingent among assailants. They could not risk exposure to HIV, so they chose the youngest and most vulnerable victims with the full blessing (don't even try to challenge me on this one) and protection of the Holy See.
At that time (early nineties) I remember reading reports of incidents of African priests or bishops selectively raping nuns because they believed their victims' virginity and purity would protect them against HIV. Except the dumb fucks were already scheduled to die. In one instance, the rapist/priest told the Catholic funeral for the nun he had infected and murdered.
Just so typically, fucking ignoramus Catholic using any slim justification for shitting on his fellow humans.
I remember seeing it live as well and thinking, "THAT was amazing!" And I knew there would be a shit storm right around the corner.
1992 was a fun year for SNL. Nirvana making out with one another during the closing credits, Roseanne, Madonna and Barbra all coming together for "Coffee Talk" and the O'Connor controversy.
I'm totally with R35 on this, Ireland had/still has a huge issue with the Catholic Church running a majority of the nation's school and the abuses aren't just sexual. O'Connor herself faced a lot of physical and psychological abuse as a girl until her father got her out. In some cases the school could even keep parents from seeing their own children. The actual photo she ripped up was the one her mother hung on the wall of her childhood home. I read a good article on this lately, just wish I could remember where.
Women who have had abortions hate religion. They can't deal with their guilt. It's that simple.
R41 feeds on the feces of Bernadette Ratzinger and other old Vatican queens.
R38 you realize how Catholics and other Christian missionaries perpetuate poverty in Africa by preaching against birth control.
Why are the numbers all screwed up in this thread?
r41, you are a fucking freeper shitstain.
As well as a liar
Its been written about in a few books, but SNL had thought she was going sing "War" and rip up or show a photo of a child at the end. That's why they were ready to do the closeup, etc.
They had no idea. And from what I've read it sounds like Lorne was fine with it.
Sinead O'Connor was right though, but it was a very different time.
[quote]Joe Pesci said he would have slapped her in his opening monologue and had the picture taped up.
Well, she would've had enough time to run as he was setting up the ladder to do it.
I loved her then and I love her now! She was absolutely correct.
She is from Ireland. The Catholic church has always had a stanglehold on that country.
Lorne Michaels would probably never admit in the end that history has vindicated O'Connor. Which is odd since her actions in that episode made that one of the most infamous and long-lasting spontaneous moments that people will remember about SNL.
She needs to go back on.
She does need to go back on. It would be great for her reappearance to be a surprise.
She was a singer with REAL guts who didn't create controversy just for the hell of it, but because she actually believed in what she said.
Ironically, old cunt Madonna had the nerve to critisize Sinead when she did this (probably jealous she didn't come up with it first).
Indeed, R52. In fact, O'Connor said she was surprised because she thought that the stories of the abuse had reached the US. While I applauded her gesture (due to the Church's stance on women and homosexuality), when she gave the reason , at the time, I was like, "What is this abuse she is talking about?"
Now we know.
And, as the abuse stories reached a fever pitch, Church attendance in Ireland has declined. In the 80s and 90s, seminaries in Ireland were so full that they were exporting priests to the US. Not anymore.
The kid-fucking really screwed the Catholic Church. Nobody except a few very old people take them seriously anymore.
Tim Robbins was the host that night, and he refused to shake her hand or even look at her during the closing credits. He was raised Catholic, but so what, I thought he was a liberal? He stood on the opposite end of the stage away from the bad lady who had criticized his ultraconservative religion. What a douche.
Here's the actual clip of Sinead tearing up the picture.
I saw it when it originally aired..I'm that old.. I applauded her. I hate organized religion especially ones that make more money than the God they claim to be channeling..fuck the Pope
I saw it on tv at the time and it seemed like common sense. I was surprised when I went to school the next day and found out it was kind of a big deal. I didn't have a churchy family though.
[quote]The week after, Joe Pesci said he would have slapped her in his opening monologue and had the picture taped up.
Joe is an old Italian Republican asshole with short man syndrome who's angry at the world for being short and ugly.
...and for having a micropenis.
Sinead O'Connor, setting trends for 20 years
Lucille Ball was going to rip up the pope's picture on her TV show, but Gary Morton talked her out of it.
R38 The flag in her performance is the flag of Ethopia. Rastafarians uses it as a symbol of their faith. She was also singing "War" by Bob Marley in that clip. That song is actaully a speech given by Hallie Salssie (the Jesus of the Rasta religon).
R31, Lady Gaga would never do anything as "radical" as rip a picture of the pope, however less scandalous it moght be today than it was in 1992. Gaga never does anything radical or controversial, she's all about marketing and selling.
Gaga can't even sing like Sinead or hold an audience captive while singing a capella for 3 minutes.
Frank Sinatra said at the time that he would "kick her ass if she was a man." As if!
Madonna HATED Sinead cause she was the only person more controversial than her and no doubt cause she had the talent to back it up. I think as early as 89 during LAP when Sinead first emerged and hadn't hit the mainstream she said she was "as sexy as Venetian Blinds".
The SNL part isn't on youtube as it was cut from reruns and looks hard to find anywhere. But she couldn't get through one performance without making a cunt of herself.
This was a rough time for her, in the backlash years her controversies suddenly became tired, rather than interesting like before. She also looked like shit, as early as then the Old Donna jibes started. Cue surgery and she had to go down the Celine Evita route then the fake Earth Mother but with better music of ROL to get back on track.
Right-wingers like to gloat that Sinead ruined her career, but they don't get that politics was far more important to her than being a pop singer anyway. She's satisfied making a modest living and speaking out on issues important to her.
Being around back in the day, female and a fan of both Madonna and Sinead, I really don't recall this great hatred Madge had for O'Connor. And Madonna's reaction has been widely distorted, not least by slightly unhinged people like r66. All she said was something like I think there is a better way she (Sinead) could make her point and that SNL sketch. It's not as though Madge was Sinead's worse critic.
Agreed, R69. The closest comparison is Norah Jones. I'm not a big Jones fan but I respect her, and she really never wanted to be a big star (nor did Sinead), just to make music and do her own thing.
Sinead's last several albums have been quite amazing.
Her voice is amazing. Listen to her version of "Raglan Road" sometime. She has such a beautiful voice.
Sinead was brave at the time and not just in hindsight - true bravery, like Manning and WikiLeaks.
I am from a (liberal American) Catholic family who disliked the Pope, knew well what the Church was up to, and my family respected her for her action on Saturday Night Live.
I hate the cliche, but she spoke truth to power, and few do that.
God, Madonna looks inconsequential in comparison.
[quote]I really don't recall this great hatred Madge had for O'Connor
Well then perhaps you should stfu and leave the discussion to "unhinged" people who actually know what they're talking about.
Why even bring Madonna into this discussion?
Why is Madonna "inconsquential" because Sinead ripped a pic of the pope? These comparisons are truly stupid and have nothing to do with any of the issues now or at the time.
And, it's not as though DL hasn't expended enough of its own energy attacking Sinead.
"Madonna's slutty Heidi look in the Erotica era..."
Jesus Christ, for the last time I was playing a CHARACTER: Dita Parlo!
Fuck Madonna. There are 9647826 threads for her ass.
This is SINEAD's thread.
Yes, let's blame Madonna because a few idiots want to bring her into every thread about a female performer just so they can bash her in their trite way.
It's more accurate to say that "this is a thread about Sinead", it's not actually "Sinead's thread". Although, as I pointed out before, most DL threads in which Sinead is mentioned tend to involve nasty attacks on her, so it's nice to have one that is a little praiseworthy.
R74, where's the evidence then? And, how do you classify someone as "people who actually know what they're talking about"? Does being around at the time, being a fan of both women and paying attention to what was going on classify one as "actually knowing what they're talking about"? Since you claim you do, tell us about it.
Her new album is amazing. I am surprised it hasn't been played more.
Sinead was right. She deserves apology
I was just a kid in 1992, 12 years old, but I totally remember this. I remember being bored!
Now, it was chilling. I fucking love her voice and her intensity is just palpable. Amazing. I'm gonna go buy some of her back albums...
(and to the guy upthread, I totally remember Nirvana making out with each other and my little gay self thinking "hmmm")
R79 you yourself said “I don’t recall any hatred between the two”, so what do you expect me to say back? How does being a fan but not remembering the details count for anything. And if you throw words like unhinged about, you surely don’t expect a nice response.
If you want the specifics then I already mentioned the “sexy as venetian blinds” quote. Now I didn’t pluck that out of thin air and that was when she only came on the scene circa Mandinka. So clearly she wasn’t fond of her from the off.
You are quite correct about the presenting her ideas better quote but that was the thought out PR statement. Do you think she’d parody Sinead’s very brave statement for the sake of it? And don’t you see the sheer hilarious hypocrisy of her of all people taking someone to task for blasphemy?
Finally, it was all around in the media at the time – that SNL-like show The Edge had a sketch with Julie Brown saying “top this Sinead!”. It says in Madonna fans bible Encyclopedia Madonnica that she hates Sinead. There was also a scene cut from Truth or Dare with her making disparaging comments about Sinead.
For her part Sinead has been nothing but nice about Madonna, picking Live to Tell as a favourite song but she did quite rightly mention why would someone known for sticking up for women tear one down for not being sexy with that venetian blinds comment.
Perhaps “hate” was a strong word, but she definitely wasn’t too fond of her back then. Now I imagine she respects her a lot in hindsight. As for making this thread all about Madonna then yes I agree, I checked to see if someone mentioned the Joey Buttafucko parodying incident – it was relevant in that sense, but it should be about Sinead.
I was really stunned at how vicious and vociferous the backlash was about Sinead.
But in retrospect, most of mainstream America only knew her for "Nothing Compares 2 U" - still a masterpiece of a song. Most of them knew little about her - aside from her shaved head - and so it was easy to shun her and forget.
Her music aside from "Nothing Compares" was otherwise indie/alternative - I don't think she ever wanted to be Madonna, or wanted the kind of fame and album sales that we often cite in these threads as a sign of success. She just wanted to have enough success and enough fans to make a living, which I think is happening now.
I adore Sinead and HIGHLY recommend that you see her perform live if you get the chance. She's absolutely mesmerizing.
I recall at the time, Lorne was asked for his reaction to the photo rip and he said, "It's like inviting someone to your house for a party and catching them pissing in your houseplants." I got the impression that he wasn't upset about the anti-religion stuff as much as he was about being duped on his own show. I think he was more embarrassed than outraged.
I had tickets to her concert last year before she cancelled them due to illness (she is bipolar and apparently had a bad reaction to new meds).
Glad she is better now and her Facebook page is suggesting new tour dates will be announced soon.
An interview from Friday.
LOVE the story about her and Prince (starting around 9:00)