With 2024 underway and the presidential race in full swing, it's time for Saturday Night Live to return to doing what it loves best: mocking former President Donald J. Trump.
In its first new broadcast of the year, hosted by Jacob Elordi and featuring musical guest Renee Rapp, SNL kicked off with a sketch featuring Trump's resident impressionist, James Austin Johnson. She mocked Trump's offhand remarks outside the lower Manhattan courtroom where he is again on trial facing charges of defaming writer E. Jane Carroll, after an earlier jury ruling in May that Trump defamed and sexually assaulted her.
After a brief introduction by Chloe Fineman, who played Alina Haba, Trump's lawyer, (“I'm new at this, and I'm learning,” she said), Johnson entered as Trump and quickly performed his legal representation.
“You're great on TV,” Johnson told Feinman, adding: “He's probably the worst lawyer I've ever had, which is a huge accomplishment. Look at this team, this is the bottom of the barrel, people, this is who said yes. I'm “In the running for president, that's the best I can get. Sounds like a red flag, doesn't it?”
Johnson addressed the rest of his lawyers and said: “By the way, you will not be getting paid.”
He promised to abide by a gag order that prevented him from discussing the current libel trial. “So I'm not going to say the judge is an idiot, or where he lives or what kind of crappy car he drives,” Johnson said. I didn't know they still made Wagoneers.
Johnson celebrated his first-place finish in the Iowa caucuses by taking jabs at rivals like Ron DeSantis (“Ron Destopped,” he said. “It just works. We’re going with Ron Destopped”) and Vivek Ramaswamy (“The one who dropped out,” he said.) “I entered the race and agreed to live in my suit pocket. I love my little Ratatouille.”)
He continued to compare himself to President Biden, his potential rival in this year's election. “He smells little girls’ hair,” Johnson said. “I'm different, of course, I do much worse. Have you ever seen that video of me dancing with Epstein? Boy, is that some dark energy.”
Johnson expected that he would prevail because of his loyal voters, and said: “We just need them to survive until November.” “Survive until November. Just pull that lever and drop dead.”
Whatever the case, Johnson expects 2024 to be an exciting year for him. “I either go to prison, or become president, or frankly, Cleansing“Maybe three,” he said. “Let’s turn the room.”
Celebrity cult of the week
Awards season has already produced several viral videos for Celebrities talk to each other in conversations Inaudible on camera. So who better to explain what they're saying than a pair of professional lip readers, played by Elordi and Bowen Yang? Well, maybe everyone else – the two were truly awful, yet funny, mistaking a romantic heart-to-heart between Timothée Chalamet and Kylie Jenner and Obvious joke from Jennifer Lawrence. Appropriately, for a comedy piece about spoken language and its meaning, no written words can do justice to the goofy voice Elordi adopts when he tries to read the lips of Travis Kelce, a tight end who is a friend of Kansas City Chiefs and Taylor Swift.
Fly in the friendly skies of the week
There is no silver lining in this month's episode in which the door plug on an Alaska Airlines flight exploded shortly after takeoff. But that didn't stop “SNL” from looking for a positive spin in this fake Alaska Airlines ad, which reveals the company's new (fake) slogan: “You didn't die, you got a great story.” The phony ad also suggests Alaska was the carrier in an episode in which an off-duty pilot was accused of trying to cut engines on a flight in October and charged with more than 80 counts of attempted murder. As the flight attendant, played by Kenan Thompson, says: “We are now very proud to say that this is our second worst flight.”
This week's weekend update jokes
On the Weekend Update desk, Colin Jost and Michael Che continued to talk about the 2024 presidential election.
Well guys, it's 2024. But is it? [His screen showed photographs of Trump and Biden] I don't know about you, but when I think about 2020, I never think we have to take that year back. And if you're feeling confused, you're not the only one. At a rally on Thursday, President Biden said he was confused when he claimed he had just taken a photo with a woman who wasn't even there. Then the next day, Donald Trump repeatedly conflated Nikki Haley with Nancy Pelosi. Guys, I don't know if we should have this election. I'm honestly starting to feel like I'm mistreating my elders. I don't even blame them, I blame us because we allowed it. It reminds me of those bum fight videos, where they make two homeless guys fight over money. Now we look at it and wonder, how did we as a society allow this to happen? So I think the best solution is to tell Trump and Biden that they won. And we are very proud of them. And they can rest now.
In the Iowa caucuses on Monday, Ron DeSantis beat Nikki Haley to take second place. [His screen showed a photograph of DeSantis smiling awkwardly.] Well, that should put – whatever this is – on his face.
Office Weekend Update part of the week
Separate from Friday's news of Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina endorsing Trump at a rally in New Hampshire, Devon Walker impersonated Scott, in an attempt to justify his endorsement. After making fun of Scott's voice (“My voice sounds like Bill Clinton was actually black,” Walker said. “I sound like a princess.”) And the Frog. “I look like Forrest Gump doing an impression of Ja Rule.” Walker explained that he did not see color: “When I looked at all the people at the Trump rally, I didn't see a single color.” He also stressed that the question of whether Hailey was born in America is not as a ‘racist dog whistle.’ Walker then took out what he said was a ‘racist dog whistle’ and blew on it, apparently to no effect — until Jost, grumbling in annoyance, asked, “What’s that noise?”
“Travel junkie. Coffee lover. Incurable social media evangelist. Zombie maven.”