My Working Mom Hero: Tina Fey.

By Tracy Evans

 

Tina Fey is finally a household name. It’s about time. I’ve been treating myself to Fey’s talent for years, now you can too. Since the beginning of her career, 38-year-old Fey has been under the radar even though she was breaking new ground in television left and right. So it’s thrilling to now see her basking in the spotlight. Last month this working mom became the media’s “it girl” after she stole the show as Sarah Palin in the Saturday Night Live season opener. Just two weeks after that she was the belle of the Emmy’s winning three statues for her work on the critically acclaimed NBC sitcom 30 Rock. She followed that off with another spectacular SNL spoof of newscaster Katie Couric’s interview with Sarah Palin. Fey is on a well-deserved winning streak. Not bad for a self-described geek from Philadelphia.

 

Even Republicans with a sense of humor appreciate Fey’s impersonation of their V.P. Nominee. Sure the media’s obsession with Palin helped both SNL skits draw big ratings but there’s more to it that: Tina nailed the impression. So much so, viewers have since watched the season opener skit on-line millions of times over since the SNL season opener aired three weeks ago – making it an instant classic.

 

Fey started out as a player in the comedy troupe Second City in Chicago. Actually she failed at her first try-out but the second time was the charm. She was later scouted by Saturday Night Live as a writer. Not only did she join the show she was later promoted to head writer. That’s right, she was first female head writer in the history of SNL. Her career skyrocketed when she managed to make the tricky switch from behind the scenes staffer to on-camera personality. Just getting your boss to give you a shot on-air is difficult but actually pulling it off is a whole different story. Kudos for SNL boss Lorne Michaels for giving her a chance. The risk paid off big time. Fey managed to make the SNL Weekend Update news anchor skit funny again. Thanks to her writing and on-camera pairing with funnyman Jimmy Fallon, the fake anchor match is considered by many to be the best news duo in the show’s history. After Fallon left the show, Fey’s best bud Amy Poehler joined her at the anchor desk. The first female news team in Weekend Update history. Not an easy feat in the male-dominated world of comedy.

 

littlekingdom
10.27.13

Awesome article, everyone just adores Tina fey. She has got her persona dignified as working mother. Truly she can be called a hero who struggled a bit to make it large for herself & her family.

Azucar
10.14.08

Look, I love Tina Fey, I have since before she became head writer.

However, I think your article glosses over some of the harder facts of Fey's storied rise--it hasn't been all peaches and cream.

For instance Loren didn't "give her a chance" to go on the air, he told her he'd consider putting her on the air ONLY if she lost at least 30 pounds. How would you react if your boss told you that to get the next promotion you'd have to lose weight?

All SNL performers are contractually obligated to possibly star in an NBC sitcom with Loren Michaels as an executive producer, they don't have a choice. It's a testament to Tina's boundless talent that 30 Rock has been such a critical darling, but make no mistake, she was contractually obligated to make a show.

Since we're all about celebrating working moms, let's make sure we're also talking about the hard choices Tina has had to make as a mirror of the trade-offs the rest of us must face as well.

anneh
10.14.08

Great article! I've been a fan of hers for a long time too and it is great to see her getting the attention she deserves. Thanks for highlighting a great woman.