Think all the way back to March. Quarantine was just getting started and a little docuseries called Tiger King was all the rage on Netflix. Around the same time, Saturday Night Live was airing its 45th season on NBC and as such, it was taking full advantage of the ongoing cultural phenomenon. On the live sketch comedy show, SNL newcomer Chloe Fineman was charged with impersonating Tiger King's Carole Baskin to critical acclaim. It was a hit with most people, in fact, other than Baskin herself.
In a new interview on Dennis Quaid's The Pet Show podcast, Baskin joked she could just "slap" Fineman for the portrayal.
“I could just slap that woman! [Laughs]," Baskin said on the podcast, which hit the airwaves Tuesday. "This whole, 'My kitty, meow, meow, kitty, meow, and then she would just say these really weird words all in a row. That all became popular, I guess, in popular culture and people wanted me to talk like that on the Cameos. And I’m like, ‘I have no idea how to talk like that. That is not how I speak.”
She added, “That’s been the weird thing on Cameo, every...well, I shouldn’t say everybody, but so many people want me to sing. And I’m like, “I was not the person pretending to sing in that show. That was somebody else pretending to sing. I didn’t even pretend to sing. I don’t sing.’ And yet, that became, ‘she sings’ and I don’t know how that connection was made.”
Baskin, of course, was one of the leads of Tiger King as she owns and operates Big Cat Rescue, a business she markets as a sanctuary and safe haven for big cats shopped around to the roadside zoos featured heavily in the docuseries. As unveiled in the series, Baskin was the one Joe Exotic tried hiring a hitman to kill, the reason he's currently serving a 22-year federal prison sentence.
The whole situation has already spawned two separate television shows, one starring Nic Cage and the other starring Fineman's SNL colleague Kate McKinnon. As of Tuesday, McKinnon's series has been ordered to series by NBC and Peacock. It's unclear when that series will be ready for release. It's currently being developed by Shameless alum Etan Frankel under the name of Joe Exotic.
Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness is now streaming on Netflix.