Mark Zuckerberg Saturday night live

On Saturday Night live, the actual Mark Zuckerberg popped up in the show’s iconic opening speech together with Jesse Eisenberg, who played the Facebook creator in the Oscar-nominated film The Social Network.

It’s sarcastic that Eisenberg, who played a great role in trashing Zuckerberg’s status, is now part of an effort that makes Zuckerberg more pleasant. That’s pretty significant, considering that Facebook might one day rest on that kind of outside support if and when the corporation offers its shares to the public.

As the star of the film, Eisenberg played a very dark and sinister Zuckerberg in the possibly fictionalized account of the founding of Facebook. Thru the Saturday Night Live monotonous, he was disturbed by humorist Andy Samberg, who ran out in a Zuckerberg like a hoodie. Samberg said that he felt bad as Eisenberg got nominated for an Academy Award for Top Actor and added, as Zuckerberg, “What did I get?” Eisenberg replied, “Well, wasn’t Facebook just appreciated at $50 billion?”  Samberg booms, “All hail the Zuck.”

The artists have done a decent job mimicking Zuckerberg’s outfit and some of his behaviors. But it was much more amusing to see the real Zuck, as a kind of send-up of him, show them how they should actually do the scene. The camera cuts to Zuckerberg himself, saying that he required going out there because “those guys are geeks” and that he’s fun because he designed “poking.” As the pair talked around how they play Zuckerberg, the actual Zuckerberg joined the duo on stage.

Samberg declared the condition “awk-berg” and exited the stage. Eisenberg said he liked Zuckerberg’s conference on 60 Minutes. Eisenberg asked him if he had seen the film and Zuckerberg said yes. He said it was “remarkable,” and Eisenberg said, “I’ll take that.” They then presented the next gig and high-fived each other.

It wasn’t much of a joking routine. In fact, Zuckerberg has been amusing on 60 Minutes, when he said that the filmmakers got the T-shirts right that Eisenberg’s personality wears. “I think I own each one of those T-shirts,” he said. Zuckerberg was really far more poised than Eisenberg, who appeared, or at least was acting, like a nervous wreck. The whole thing observed very much prepared.

Zuckerberg, earlier Facebook president Sean Parker, & others have laughed off the movie for making their lives far sexier than the truth was. But Zuckerberg’s current approach to the film, which has won a lot of tributes, is probably the right one. Zuckerberg fares greatest in the press when he shows a sense of humor about his nerdy self and attempts to be charming in a humble way.

There’s also a commercial reason for this on Zuckerberg’s part. If the community views him as likable, that could carry over to a promising view of Facebook as a brand. And if Zuckerberg is pleasant, then Facebook may have a relaxed time winning advertisers and investors. Possibly we are over thinking a humble guest appearance on a TV show. But Zuckerberg can simply afford the finest public relations advice and you have to trust his handlers are rational about these things.