Comedian Alec Baldwin returned to Saturday Night Live last night to reprise his role as Donald Trump, the first time he has done so since the reality TV show star officially became president.
But it was actress Melissa McCarthy who stole the show, dropping into SNL with an ill-fitting suit to play Sean Spicer, Trump’s aggressive press secretary whose briefings have been marked by their combative tone with reporters.
"Before we begin, I know that myself and the press have gotten off to a rocky start," McCarthy's Spicer said to open the skit. "When I say ‘rocky start’, I mean it in the sense of Rocky the movie because I came out here to punch you."
The "Ghostbusters" and "Bridemaids" star mocked Spicer’s recent problems with the truth, saying that when the news was announced that Trump would nominate Judge Neil M. Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, “The crowd greeted him with a standing ovation, which lasted a full 15 minutes. And you can check the tape on that. Everyone was smiling. Everyone was happy.”
“Those are the facts forever,” McCarthy’s Spicer continued.
After accidentally reading her own email password at the podium (Spicer appeared to tweet out a password last week), McCarthy fought with a New York Times reporter Glenn Thrush (played by cast member Bobby Moynihan) over the use of the term “ban” to describe Trump’s controversial immigration order that prohibited travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States.
“You just said that,” McCarthy’s Spicer told the reporter after booing him from the podium. “He’s quoting you. It’s your words. He’s using your words, when you use the words and he uses them back, it’s circular using of the word and that’s from you.”
In the show’s cold open, Baldwin and SNL’s writers crammed an many jokes about the unbelievably-busy news week as the 6-minute skit would allow.
There were digs at the made-up “Bowling Green massacre,” Trump’s apparent obsession with ratings on the Arnold Schwarzenegger-hosted “The Apprentice” and references to his reportedly combative call with Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull, who reminded him that President Obama promised to take in 1,200 Australian refugees.
“No refugees,” Baldwin’s angry Trump shot back. “America first, Australia sucks. Your reef is failing. Prepare to go to war.”
Son-in-law Jared Kushner’s absence while observing Shabbat, which some observers have linked to Trump’s media troubles after his inauguration, was also mocked.
“While the Jews are away, the goys will play,” Baldwin’s Trump said to a grim reaper standing in for Steve Bannon, his influential and controversial advisor and the former head of the conservative website Breitbart.
Baldwin’s Trump ended the skit at a kiddie desk in the Oval Office while giving “President Bannon” back his seat.
“This is so much fun, I love it,” Baldwin’s Trump said as he played with a children’s toy.
As of Sunday morning, neither Trump nor Spicer have weighed in on the show. In the past, Trump has blasted the show as “unwatchable” and “totally biased” and has said Baldwin's impersonation of him “just can’t get any worse.”