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Norm Macdonald's most iconic 'Weekend Update' jokes honored in 'SNL' season premiere

Macdonald died earlier this year at age 61 after being diagnosed with cancer nearly 10 years ago.
/ Source: TODAY

On last night's season 47 premiere of "Saturday Night Live," the hosts of "Weekend Update," Michael Che and Colin Jost paid tribute to former cast member Norm Macdonald, who died last month at age 61. It was a bittersweet moment as the two introduced a clip featuring the former "Weekend Update" host's funniest moments.

Norm Macdonald during the 'Weekend Update' skit on April 12, 1997.Mary Ellen Matthews / NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via

Jost gave an emotional introduction, explaining that "Norm is the reason that I ever wanted to 'Weekend Update,' so tonight we thought we'd turn the last few jokes of 'Update' over to Norm."

In the clip, we see MacDonald introducing his segment as "the fake news." He goes on to expertly poke fun of the political and pop culture figures of the day, including former President Bill Clinton. He also jokes about a bizarre proposal for a floating airport and even tears into the OJ Simpson trial with a zinger about attorney Johnnie Cochran trying on Simpson's knit cap in the courtroom.

Macdonald, born in Quebec City, Canada, starred on "SNL" from 1993 to 1998 and is best remembered for anchoring "Weekend Update" and his celebrity impressions, especially those of Burt Reynolds in "Celebrity Jeopardy!" and Bob Dole, who tweeted his condolences when the comedian died.

MacDonald's death came after a nearly decadelong, private battle with cancer. His friend Lori Jo Hoekstra told TODAY in a statement at the time that the actor was "most proud of his comedy. He never wanted the diagnosis to affect the way the audience or any of his loved ones saw him."

"Norm was a pure comic. He once wrote that ‘a joke should catch someone by surprise, it should never pander.’ He certainly never pandered. Norm will be missed terribly.”

On last night's show, at the end of the laughter, Macdonald got to close out "Weekend Update" one final time. "And that's the way it is folks," he said. "Good night and good luck."

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