NEW YORK — Tracy Morgan made his first extensive TV performance on “Saturday Night Live” this weekend, 16 months after he was nearly killed in a car accident.
“I’m back, it feels so good to be here,” said Morgan at the start of his opening monologue.
Morgan came out on stage at NBC’s Studio 8H, a place he called “home,” on Saturday night to a standing ovation. He was ready to address his near-fatal accident, squashing the concerns people had about his ability to host after he sustained severe injuries from the crash.
“People were wondering, ‘Can he speak? Does he have 100 percent mental capacity?’” Morgan said.
“But the truth is, I never did. I might actually be a few points higher now,” he said jokingly.
Morgan was riding in a limousine with three other people in June 2014 when the car was struck by a Walmart tractor-trailer on the New Jersey Turnpike. He suffered multiple broken bones and a brain injury that left him in a coma for several days. Two others were injured and Morgan’s friend, James McNair, was killed in the crash.
Morgan thanked fans for supporting him this past year, but a special shout out went to his comedy family, which included “30 Rock” cast members Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Jane Krakowski and Jack McBrayer.
And like true family, they came out on Saturday to perform skits with Morgan.
“From the heart, and this part is no joke, we’re so happy you’re okay, and we’re even happier you’re ready to make people laugh again,” Fey said.
Morgan made two other TV appearances prior to hosting SNL. He said in his first interview on NBC’s “Today” show after his accident in June that he still experiences headaches, nosebleeds and forgetfulness, side affects from his injuries.