Newswire: SNL to start making real commercials to run alongside the fake ones

After years of producing fake commercials for products both real and imagined (R.I.P. Bathroom Monkey), it sounds like Saturday Night Live is about to get into the ad game in earnest. Variety reports that tonight’s episode of the long-running sketch show will feature a new twist on the show’s normal marketing strategy: a totally real, non-spoof commercial for Verizon, written by Colin Jost and featuring cast member Kenan Thompson.

Late-night TV has seen an increase in paid product placement over the last few years, with hosts like Seth Meyers, James Corden, and Jimmy Fallon integrating the art of straight-facedly hocking crap into their standard TV duties. Still, it’s something of a leap to see a show that’s devoted so much time and energy to mocking ad techniques over the decades throw its newly refreshed weight behind the concept. (Even if the show’s resurgent …

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