Right from Saturday Night Live‘s introduction to the highly anticipated performance of Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump, it was game on.
The opening sketch, a parody of Monday’s U.S. presidential debate, saw Baldwin/Trump introduced as “the man to blame for the bottom half of all his kids’ faces” by comedian Michael Che, playing moderator Lester Holt.
Baldwin walked out to cheers with a perfectly frowning face and remarkably similar features to Trump.
Kate McKinnon, who does an equally comical version of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, pretended to pull the obviously prepared buzz term “Trumped-up, trickle-down” from the top of her head when asked about the American economy.
The sketch took excerpts from the debate earlier this week and embellished both sides, but SNL’s politics were clear.
The broken microphone
“Hey Jazz Man,” Baldwin/Trump called out to Che/Holt as he took the floor to discuss economics. “I’ve got a very presidential answer for this: Our jobs are fleeing this country. They’re going to Mexico. They’re going to Jina.”
The word “Jina” became a running joke, poking fun at the way Trump pronounces the word China.
After being told there’s still 88 minutes left in the debate, Baldwin/Trump, who was getting ready to leave, quipped: “My microphone is broken. She broke it. With Obama. She and Obama stole it. They took it to Kenya. They took my microphone to Kenya and they broke it and now it’s broken.”
Trump had complained he had microphone issues during Monday’s presidential debate.
Clinton wasn’t immune from being a target — McKinnon made fun of the fact that Clinton was trying to be “relatable” by talking about her drape-making father. She also reproduced the Clinton shoulder-shimmy. But the show didn’t hold back when it came to Trump.
Answering a question about temperament, Baldwin/Trump said he had the best temperament and Clinton, the worst.
“She’s always screaming, constantly lying. Her hair is crazy, her face is orange except around the eyes where it’s white. And when she stops talking her mouth looks like a tiny little butthole.”
Clinton’s fixed smile
McKinnon, who also included Clinton’s over-laughter and consistent smiling at points in the parody, asked: “Can America vote right now?”
Baldwin will play Trump for the remainder of the race during SNL’s 42nd season. Americans are just over a month away from the presidential election, which will be held Nov. 8.
“I get it, you hate me,” McKinnon/Clinton said in her closing statement to the audience. “You hate my voice and you hate my face. But if you never want to see my face again, elect me president and I swear to God I will lock myself in the Oval Office and not come out for four years.”
The show was hosted by Australian actress Margot Robbie, with Canadian musician The Weeknd as musical guest.