Well, this one is bound to hit you straight in the feels if you’re the type of person who can’t read a name like “Andy Samberg” without immediately hearing a booming voice in your head say “aaaaan-DEEEEE SAAAAM-buuuurg.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, an NBC spokesperson has confirmed that legendary Saturday Night Live announcer Don Pardo has flown up to heaven at the age of 96. No! I mean….nnnoooooooOOOOOOOOOOOooooo!
Don was the voice of SNL since it premiered in 1975 and only missed one season (1981-82), but he lent his voice to a million other NBC programs before that. Don started working for NBC in 1944 when it was still on radio, then moved to television when that was invented. Don Pardo was the original voice of The Price is Right, the announcer for game shows Three on a Match, Winning Streak, and Jackpot!, and was the original voice of Jeopardy!, which he parodied in “Weird Al” Yankovic’s “I Lost on Jeopardy“. He tried to retire once in 2004, but SNL wouldn’t let him go and would fly him from his home in Arizona to New York once a week. Eventually he started recording from home, because fuck you Lorne Michaels, Don Pardo doesn’t want to get out of his sweatpants and slippers.
Damn, this one hits me hard because I seriously say everything in Don Pardo’s voice. I’ve caught myself in the grocery store reading cereal boxes like Don Pardo (“hhhhon-EEEEE NUT CHEEEER-iiii-oooos”). He could make anything sound extremely important.
And this would be the part where I say “Rest in peace, Don Pardo”, but you know that’s not going to happen. I bet the second he got to heaven, God pulled him aside, handed him a mic and a set of earphones, and put him to work announcing everyone’s names as they arrive at the pearly gates.