Bob Odenkirk still has a recording of Jeremy Irons yelling at him over bad Saturday Night Live monologue
One man's tirade is another man's treasure, apparently.
Bob Odenkirk, who wrote for Saturday Night Live in the late '80s and early '90s, still cherishes the memory of being yelled at by Jeremy Irons when the actor hosted the iconic NBC sketch show in 1991.
"Rob Schneider and I had written this monologue, and it wasn't great," Odenkirk said Wednesday on The Howard Stern Show. "He was right. He was really mad. He was so mad."
He imitated the English performer's reaction, saying, "I can sing. I can dance. I can juggle. I am a Shakespearean-trained actor. And you have me doing this?!"
Someone else might've tried to block out being harangued by the Oscar-winning actor, but Odenkirk told Stern that he actually secretly recorded the moment and cherishes it to this day.
"I had a little recorder, and I taped it because I loved it so much," he said, smiling. "And he was right, God bless him. It wasn't a great monologue, but he's a trooper."
"I played it for many people," Odenkirk revealed. "I don't know where it is now. It's at the bottom of a bin somewhere. It exists."
When Stern asked the Better Call Saul actor if he takes "pride" in being "yelled at by some of the best," Odenkirk responded with an enthusiastic "Yes!"
Odenkirk said the earful he got from Irons was worse than when he and colleague Conan O'Brien were chewed out by another SNL host, George Steinbrenner, who emceed the sketch show in 1990. In 2019, O'Brien told Stern about the Yankees owner getting mad over a monologue (we're sensing a pattern here).
The comedian, who wrote for SNL around the same time as Odenkirk, said no one "had thought of the monologue" that week and it was the duo's job to finally pitch something to Steinbrenner. Not only did he hate it the first time, but the second time too, after Lorne Michaels told them to bring it up again.
"Odenkirk and I s--- ourselves and disappeared from the room," he recalled. "We literally went right through the wall like ghosts, and I don't think we spoke for a week."
Recently, Odenkirk admitted to being "such a prick" during his SNL days.
"I was so opinionated. I was a very opinionated comedy writer," he said on PeopleTV's Couch Surfing. Looking back, Odenkirk said he was "kind of sad" about his behavior then.
"I wish I wasn't such a stuck up young man. I wish I was a sweeter fellow because I had a great opportunity there," he said. "I made the most of it. I learned a lot about comedy writing and I made some great friends for life at that show, but I still wish I'd just handled it better, but don't you always wish that about your young self?"
Still, Odenkirk had success on the show; he won an Emmy for writing and co-created the iconic Matt Foley, Chris Farley's motivational speaker character who lived in a van down by the river.
The original late-night comedy sketch show from the one and only Lorne Michaels.