The clever writers at ”Saturday Night Live” found a way to get Janet Jackson to make fun of her Super Bowl ”wardrobe malfunction” without actually making fun of herself. In Saturday’s opening sketch, host and musical guest Jackson portrayed National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, about to testify at last week’s 9/11 hearings, and encouraged by Vice President Dick Cheney (Darrell Hammond), to ”flash a boob” to distract attention from the political grilling. A flustered Rice replies that the hearing is an inappropriate forum for such lewd behavior, unlike, say, ”national sporting championships.” Nonetheless, under fire at the hearing, Rice pops out a breast, heavily pixelated by NBC cameras. (Just for the record, the studio audience saw only Jackson’s pink brassiere. ”She was definitely wearing a bra,” an NBC spokesman told the New York Daily News. ”We want to make that very clear.”
Jackson also spoofed herself with an alleged home movie designed to portray the Jackson family as ”normal,” showing a little girl in a wading pool whose bikini strap falls off. (Jackson called it a ”swimsuit malfunction.”) There was also a sketch parodying early Jackson acting showcase ”Good Times,” and a sketch apparently meant to thumb its nose at the FCC’s post-Super Bowl crackdown on indecency, in which a group of vineyard employees (including Jackson) repeatedly boast of their prowess as ”cork soakers.” Alas, no sketch pairing Jackson with Amy Poehler’s vicious caricature of brother Michael. Still, early estimates from NBC suggest that Jackson’s appearance gave ”SNL” its highest rating in 13 months.
Maybe Jackson could play Rice again in another upcoming dramatization of the Bush administration’s counterterrorism response. According to the New York Times, former White House counter-terrorism advisor (and 9/11 hearings star witness) Richard Clarke has sold to Sony Pictures the film rights to his current bestseller, ”Against All Enemies.” Former Sony chief John Calley will produce the movie. (In the 1970s, as an exec at Warner Bros., Calley oversaw the adaptation of ”All the President’s Men,” another ”what did the president know and when did he know it?” book.) ”You could shoot the first 56 pages [depicting the events in the White House situation room on Sept. 11] and have an extraordinary half of a movie, then it goes on to more enthralling stuff,” Calley told the Times. ”If we were able to do ‘All the President’s Men’ with people meeting in garages and whispering in parks, then certainly with someone sitting at a table in the White House we could have a remarkable event.”