‘SNL’ opts for opening bit on Trump instead of Harvey Weinstein
Alec Baldwin returned once again as Donald Trump to open “Saturday Night Live,” this time to take on several of the president’s critics of the week.
Heading into Saturday night, many expected the sketch show to open with its take on the Harvey Weinstein sexual assault scandal that has engulfed Hollywood and the media since last Thursday. The show, however, opted for an opening take on Trump’s week instead.
To open the show, Baldwin walked out thanking the people of “Harass-burg” Pennsylvania during a rally where he spoke about Mike Pence leaving Sunday’s NFL game over player protests and said his tickets would be donated to two lucky fans in Puerto Rico. “They will just have to fly themselves to Indiana because at some point they will have to start doing things themselves,” said Trump.
Trump had lashed out at hurricane-devastated Puerto Rico on Thursday, insisting in tweets that the federal government can’t keep sending help “forever” and suggesting the U.S. territory was to blame for its financial struggles. The island has been reeling since Hurricane Maria struck three weeks ago, leaving death and destruction in an unparalleled humanitarian crisis.
San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz, with whom Trump has had a running war of words, tweeted that the president’s comments were “unbecoming” to a commander-in-chief and “seem more to come from a ‘Hater in Chief.'”
Baldwin as Trump also took on Rex Tillerson. In a Forbes magazine interview published Tuesday, Trump once again called the “moron” story — which claimed Tillerson had referred to the president as such in July — “fake news.” But he said that if the allegation was true, then he and Tillerson should compare IQ scores, suggesting that he would have the higher score.
On the show on Saturday, Baldwin said, “What a dumb dumb dumb-aroonie. Talk about the pot calling the kettle Mexican. I have a huge IQ. I took an IQ test and it came back positive, very positive.”
During his rant, he even commented on Eminem and his “bet” network rap, telling him to “watch his back,” referring to a moment during the 2017 BET Hip Hop Awards, when Eminem performed an explosive freestyle against the president, calling him a “racist grandpa” and asking fans to “decide who you like more”: him or Trump.
Trump was criticized in the media for lashing out at the aforementioned targets during a series of Twitter posts throughout the week. “A kind of Trump Threat Deflation is setting in,” read an opinion piece in The Washington Post titled “Thrashing around in a rage, Trump unleashes a new volley of threats.”
Kumail Nanjiani hosted the episode, which featured Pink as the musical guest.
Watch the cold open below.
This story originally appeared on The Hollywood Reporter
[Screenshot via NBC]