Chris Kattan Is Touring, Answering All Unanswered Questions About Mango from ‘SNL’

‘Can you take the blue from the sky? Can you put the wind in your pocket? Can you catch a rainbow? No! Such is Mango!’
Chris Kattan Is Touring, Answering All Unanswered Questions About Mango from ‘SNL’

“Mango was so much fun to play,” says Chris Kattan of his breakout Saturday Night Live character. “The guest hosts loved doing sketches that involved Mango.” Well, most of the guest hosts anyway. You can’t blame Jennifer Lopez for getting her nose out of joint — who wants a backup dancer who’s a bigger diva than the star?

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Kattan is currently on the road, spinning tales about not only Mango but other SNL favorites such as Mr. Peepers and Azrael Abyss. Kattan has never been a stand-up comic, getting his comedy start in Los Angeles improv group The Groundlings. So instead of spouting one-liners, Kattan will “talk about my characters on SNL. I’ll interact with the audiences and tell stories about my experiences on the show. People really connected with the characters I played.”

Since we can’t make it to Spokane where Kattan is appearing this weekend, here are a few Mango starter questions that anyone in the audience is welcome to shout out: 

  • Does Kattan’s mother still think Mango is “too fruity”? 
  • Did Kattan’s Russian ex-girlfriend ever find out Mango was based on her, and if so, is Kattan on the run from the KGB?
  • How does Kattan feel about “Alexander Wang's Mango shorts landing at number two on Entertainment Weekly’s list of most ridiculous items from Saturday Night Live sold by Saks Fifth Avenue?

Strangely, given Mango’s popularity (he appeared on the show 16 times), the character was never given the big-screen treatment. Instead, Lorne Michaels decided to put Kattan in a Night at the Roxbury movie. It was an interesting choice, given that the characters rarely spoke on SNL. “We thought that Lorne would have produced a movie about the cheerleaders (another frequently recurring bit featuring Will Ferrell and Cheri Oteri), which was always a great sketch or something else instead of going with us,” Kattan told The Spokesman-Review. “But it worked out for everyone. Will and I were in the Groundlings together, and we had that chemistry.” 

Kattan also has opinions about recent rumors that Tina Fey will be taking over for Michaels after SNL celebrates its 50th anniversary. NBC has vehemently denied the rumors, meaning that they’re probably true. Put Kattan in the “Tina Fey isn’t taking over” camp, but not because he believes someone else is getting the job. “I’ve heard that rumor like everybody else has, but I doubt that Lorne Michaels is stepping down,” Kattan explained in the same Spokesman-Review interview. “Lorne is a very healthy guy with a brilliant brain. I just can’t see him leaving right now. SNL is his show, and he loves it.”

Sure, we get the theory. It’s plausible. But how do we know this isn’t a misdirection so that Mango can angle for the job? If anyone’s at Kattan’s show this weekend, feel free to ask.

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