With Saturday Night Live consistently going to the ever-deep Donald Trump well, and Alec Baldwin wondering if his portrayal of the President is making him too “cuddly,” we went into the third episode of SNL season 43 wondering if they’d switch it up a bit after last week’s Jason Aldean appearance which honored the victims of the Las Vegas massacre. They didn’t.
At a rally at “Harrass-burg,” Pennsylvania, Trump addresses his piece by piece deconstruction of the Obama administrations legacy, from undercutting Obamacare, to “ripping out all the vegetables in Michelle Obama’s garden.” Then the NFL protests were addressed.
Mike Pence is shown briefly at a Pacers game with “Mother,” then he quickly, at the behest of Trump, leaves when a single player protests. Trump says Pence’s Colts season tickets are getting donated to Puerto Rico, the winners just have to fly themselves to Indianapolis because at some point, “they need to do something for themselves.”
Eventually, the “rally” basically turns into a stand-up routine playing to his crowd. Trump goes down the checklist of every little thing that matters to his followers, like whether a Starbucks cup says “happy holidays” or “Merry Christmas” in October, rather than the systematic oppression of black Americans or the ever-widening inequality gap. If anything, it seemed like a more believable, somewhat exaggerated version of Trump.
It must be tough for Baldwin and SNL. He’s playing a man who has far more surprises on any given morning than something Emmy-winning writers can consistently come up with. The actual Donald Trump is moving the bar on what’s realistic, it must be difficult to play and near impossible to write.