In the new Netflix series, Pretend It’s a City, longtime friends and collaborators Martin Scorsese and Fran Lebowitz chat and kvetch and complain about New York City. Well, mostly it’s Lebowitz sharing her caustic wit and many ruminations on what’s wrong with people, busted with the world, and what she misses most about her beloved Manhattan while the famed director sits by her side laughing and egging her on.
In a new bit during Saturday Night Live‘s “Weekend Update,” Bowen Yang channels his best irascible Lebowitz — frizzy mop of hair, men’s tailored blazer — while Kyle Mooney’s impression of Scorsese is hilarious as he guffaws at her every word.
“I’ve been so bored at home, I was about to get married to my cufflinks,” Yang begins before Michael Che explains: “I love the series, because it’s just the two of you sitting and talking and Marty just losing his mind.”
Cue Mooney: Losing his shit, mouth agape, heaving a horsey laugh as he pound the desk with both hands.
Yang doubles down on Lebowitz’s love of smoking cigarettes (explaining that she goes to the taxi line at JFK airport because it’s the only place that still lets you smoke) and they all nearly break due to Mooney’s continued shrieks and snorts.
“Remember when everyone in New York had a machete?” Yang continues. “It used to be you would go on the subway and you would go on the subway and you’d see a man’s machete or his penis and now everyone is looking at their phones. You know why? Because there’s nothing to look at? Kids are so short nowadays. You know why? You can’t smoke in bars anymore. Gender doesn’t exist anymore. You know why? Ed Koch died.”
At this point Mooney’s Marty loses his mind and peels off his bushy caterpillar eyebrows. Once he falls out of his chair and lands on the floor, they decide it’s time to go.
But as Yang told all Fran’s many young admirers: “Be something useful. Be a piece of melon wrapped in prosciutto.”