48. Nixon's Final Days
Original Airdate: May 8th, 1976
The first season of SNL featured this darkly hilarious depiction of Nixon's final days in the White House. Played by a perfectly glowering Dan Aykroyd, the Watergate-besieged president drunkenly talks to a picture of Abe Lincoln on the wall ("Abe, you were lucky. They shot you") and demands John Belushi's Henry Kissinger to join him in prayer ("Don't you want to pray, you Christ-killer?"). The sketch was written by future U.S. Senator Al Franken and the late Tom Davis and goes well beyond easy political satire into something far deeper: "Tom was very, very oriented towards human feelings and very sensitive," Aykroyd told Rolling Stone when Davis died in 2012. "So, when they wrote the Nixon piece, which was lifted right off the pages of history, it's a little sentimental, it's a little sad. When Nixon goes to his knees you almost feel sorry for him, because he's at the bottom."