Live from New York it's Sarah Palin, well Tina Fey

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Barack Obama canceled his appearance on Saturday Night Live in the wake of Hurricane Ike, but Sarah Palin was still there - played by former SNL star Tina Fey.

Fey's reviews for playing the Republican nominee for Vice President are almost as good as Palin's accolades following her GOP convention speech.

Well-received

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"Tina Fay dazzles," says the Orlando Sentinel's TV Guy.

The Hartford Courant's TV guy, Roger Catlin, agrees:

"She nailed it in a way that few other people could do -- from that strange Northern accent to the way she looked out of the side of her eyes to that weird thing she does with her mouth that I hadn't even noticed before.

"Brilliant" says Rachel Sklar at the Huffington Post:

"Fey, the "30 Rock" creator and former SNL star, returned triumphantly to the show last night to play Palin in a brilliant impersonation, knocking it out of the park..."

Lines of the night?

A frustrated Hillary Clinton (played by Amy Poehler) on the topic of foreign affairs said, "...diplomacy should be the cornerstone of any foreign policy.

Fey, as Palin, deadpanned, "And I can see Russia from my house."

On the issue of global warming, Poehler said she believed it was "caused by man."

Responding with a near-perfect imitation of Palin's accent, Fey said, "And I believe it's just God huggin' us closer."

More pitbulls

Later, Fey and Poehler lampooned the most well-known joke of the campaign.

Palin: It reminds me of a joke we tell in Alaska...

Clinton: Oh boy.

Palin: What's the difference...

Clinton: Lipstick.

Palin: ...between a hockey mom

Clinton: Lipstick.

Palin: ...and a pitbull?

Clinton: Lipstick.

Palin: Lipstick.

Clinton: There ya' go.

The "real" Sarah Palin?

The reaction from the McCain-Palin team? Reporters on Palin's campaign plane say they were told Palin and staff watched the live episode.

There were howls of laughter from the sizable press corps covering Palin's first foray on the campaign trail without her running mate as a chaperone.
But, from the front of the plane, silence. The flight attendants assured us Palin and her entourage were watching. What she thought, though, is anybody's guess.

McCain spokesperson Ben Porritt didn't offer much this morning except, "A little comic relief is always a good thing."

Although the clip exists on YouTube, it keeps getting taken down. So, how about going directly to NBC.com? I think NBC would prefer that. Here's the link.

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