Vintage Photos of Madonna Hosting “Saturday Night Live” in 1985

Madonna was riding high in 1985. Her second album, Like A Virgin, had produced a string of hits; she starred in the movie Desperately Seeking Susan; the song Crazy for You from the movie Vision Quest became her second #1 hit; TIME Magazine had her on its cover in May; and in August (on her 27th birthday) she married actor Sean Penn. And a scandal only added to her “buzz” when Playboy published nude photos of her (from her past) in its September issue.

With all that was going on in her fledgling career it was a no-brainer for Saturday Night Live to have her host the first show of the 1985 season on Nov. 9. Surprisingly, she wasn’t called upon to sing – that honor went to the group Simple Minds (she’d get the chance in January 1993). One of the skits had her portraying Princess Diana visiting the Reagans with Prince Charles (played by Jon Lovitz).

On November 9th, 1985, Madonna hosted the 11th season premiere of Saturday Night Live. The episode not only marked her first ever appearance on the show, but is also the only episode she has ever hosted to date.
She also did a Latin style cover of A-ha’s “Take On Me,” with background vocals provided by Jon Lovitz, Damon Wayans, and Robert Smigel.
Working as an assistant to Penn & Teller, during the duos guest performance.
Getting some early practice on perfecting her faux British accent while playing Princess Di in the sketch “Nancy Reagan Meets Charles & Di.”
During the opening monologue she poked fun at her recent wedding to Sean Penn.
Giving off some “La Isla Bonita” vibes as ‘Marika’ in the sketch “El Spectaculare De Marika.”
But more importantly, she shared the stage with Robert Downey Jr.!
Terry Sweeney as ‘Clint Weston’ and Madonna as ‘Melinda Zumont’ in the sketch “Pinklisting,” which was social commentary on the growing paranoia of AIDS in Hollywood.
Channeling Marilyn Monroe in the “National Inquirer Theatre” sketch, with Anthony Michael Hall as Bobby Kennedy, and Randy Quaid as John F. Kennedy.
The sketch was a parody of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and featured Jon Lovitz as Prince Charles, Randy Quaid as Ronald Reagan, and Terry Sweeney as Nancy Reagan.
Taking her final bows during the closing credits with SNL cast members: (L-R) Jon Lovitz, Danitra Vance, Nora Dunn, Terry Sweeney, Randy Quaid, Joan Cusack, Dennis Miller, Anthony Michael Hall, and Robert Downey Jr.

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