11/06/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

SNL Ratings Ride Continues As Political Sketches Lift Show 42%

NBC's "Saturday Night Live" drew another crush of viewers this weekend, with approximately 10 million tuning in to watch comedian Tina Fey's latest sendup of GOP vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

That rating, based on preliminary data from Nielsen Media Research, is 42% higher than the same show last year and 23% higher than last week's episode.

Interest was fueled by last Thursday night's vice-presidential debate, which drew 69.9 million viewers to become the most-watched VP matchup ever.

The debate, in which Gov. Palin faced off against Democratic vice-presidential candidate Joe Biden for the first and only time during the campaign, provided considerable fodder for Ms. Fey and her fellow writers.

Ms. Fey dramatized Gov. Palin's folksy expressions, general evasiveness and habit of winking at the camera. They also took aim at Sen. Biden's backhanded compliments of Republican presidential candidate John McCain, his frequent smiling and his hair.

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