Saturday Night Live‘s Season 45 premiere couldn't have come at a busier time for presidential politics, and the show wasted no time jumping right into the essential news items of the week. Despite his supposed disgust about the idea of doing so, Alec Baldwin basically had no choice but to return to 30 Rock with his extra-large bottle of White Rain hair spray to reprise his role as the embattled Donald Trump because it's impeachment week, which means it's an all hands (and toupees) on deck-style situation at SNL.
In the night's cold open, Baldwin's Trump had to survey the potential damage of his Ukraine shakedown scandal and the resulting impeachment inquiry that's been launched against him. His first call was to Kate McKinnon‘s Rudy Giuliani, Trump's in-name personal lawyer who is also neck deep in the controversy and continues to dig a hole with his many wild media appearances.
“Rudy, I'm being impeached. It's the greatest presidential harassment of all time. I would know. I'm like the president of harassment,” NotTrump said.
“You gotta relax, Mr. Trump. You got nothing to worry about. Nobody's gonna find out about your illegal side-dealings with the Ukraine. Or how we tried to cover up those side-dealings. Or how we planned to cover up the cover up,” NotGiuliani replied … from the CNN sound stage. So much for protecting his attorney-client privilege (not to mention, the right to remain silent).
Then, the subject of impeachment took center at the next DNC Town Hall Debate, with McKinnon bringing back her version of Elizabeth Warren, who's “got the energy of a mom with five boys who all play different sports” alongside Larry David as Bernie Sanders, Woody Harrelson as Joe Biden, and Maya Rudolph as Kamala Harris.
The latter got the attention of her real-life counterpart with her repeated “that little girl was me” riff on Harris' first debate appearance of the season, and the Senator offered a pitch-perfect response.
That girl was me. pic.twitter.com/btmrzJnm6u
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) September 29, 2019
Andrew Yang also applauded Bowen Yang's impression of him during the debate segment and appeared to be ready for much, much more to come.
— Andrew Yang (@AndrewYang) September 29, 2019
The best part of the skit, though, didn't surround a front-runner, but rather Chloe Fineman's debut as long-shot candidate Marianne Williamson, who appeared as a sort of astral projection and declared, “Here's how I will impeach Donald Trump. I will trap his soul inside this crystal, which I should warn you is also a Yoni egg.” The wildest thing about this is that debate watchers probably wouldn't be surprised to hear those exact words from this candidate. It's not so much a parody as a promise.
The premiere also tackled the media's panel-style coverage of this historic development, with almost every commentator praising this moment of long-awaited action from the House of Representatives and the resulting sense that checks and balances are indeed still strong … except for Kenan Thompson‘s Quincy Maddox who declared, bluntly and often, “Ain't nothing gonna happen.” After everything that we've seen unfold in the news over the last two and a half years, it's not hard to empathize with that not-hot take.
When pressed by his co-panelists about the many elements of evidence mounting in this case, he responded, “Oh here come the transcripts! ‘Cause if there's one thing Americans love, it's reading.” And, after a spirited presentation of all the reasons this time will be different than the Mueller Report, well, Maddox remained unmoved.
And, of course, the “Weekend Update” team had something to say about this news, with Colin Jost announcing, “Now, Democrats are moving towards impeaching Trump, which should feel like a huge historic moment, but with Trump, even impeachment just feels silly … The movie Nixon was a serious film from Oliver Stone. The movie about Trump is going to be from the dudes who brought you American Pie.”
Michael Che, meanwhile, spoke for a lot of Americans who didn't pay quite enough attention to the impeachment section of civics class when he said, “When they said Trump was getting impeached, I thought great, Trump's fired! Let's get drunk! But they're like, no, he's just being impeached, but he ain't exactly ‘peached yet. It's still gonna take another year or so, and I'm like, damn. That sucks, let's get drunk.”
So, yep, SNL is back just in time to see where the impeachment train leads us all this fall, so strap in for a busy fall, y'all.
Saturday Night Live airs live at 11:30/10:30c on NBC.