Hard to believe but it's been 30 years since Eddie Murphy last appeared on Saturday Night Live.
Murphy was 19 years old in 1980 when he joined SNL. The original 1970s cast, as well as series creator Lorne Michaels, had left the show which then went into a sudden ratings and creative collapse. NBC was threatening to cancel the show except that this featured player, this young black kid from Brooklyn, was so good that they kept it on for another year. Murphy totally revitalized the show and, thanks (or not) to him, SNL survives to this day. By 1984, Murphy had a huge movie career and had left SNL but he came back one last time, in December 1984, to host. This classic sketch, "White Like Me" was one of his last SNL efforts.
Since then, Murphy has kept far away from the show that made him famous. In the mid-1990s, when Murphy's career was at a low, then SNL cast member David Spade made a crack about Murphy's woes on Weekend Update ("Look kids! A falling star!). Deeply offended that the show that he had saved was making fun of him, Murphy vowed never again to appear on the show and he has kept good to his word. One day, I hope, he'll put his grudges aside and come back on SNL.