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Oil leaking in the first cylinder? on 1997 Saturn SL2

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I currently drive a '97 Saturn Sl2 that has a far share of character. I have been able to drive my car fine, when I went to drive it home my car would not start. I had a friend look at it, thinking it was the spark plugs, so he goes to take the first one out of the first cylinder. When he went to do this, there was oil all over the spark plug and his ratchet. The other 3 were clean as a whistle. What could the problem (or problems?) be?
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The valve cover gaskets leak like crazy on the Spark Plugs on Saturns, very common problem. You need a new Valve Cover gasket with new spark plug seals. But this won't fix why your car won't start.
I tried starting it again today, and I wasn't able to. It did sound really rough as well. Would the oil leaking cause my car to misfire and not start? If I were to clean the first cylinder, replace that spark plug, would that get it started?