The cast of Saturday Night Live got in the Easter spirit this week in the best way possible: by having Melissa McCarthy play press secretary Sean Spicer playing the Easter Bunny. McCarthy was reprising her role as the testy, mispronouncing, culturally insensitive “Spicey,” while Spicer was reprising his role as the Easter Bunny, which he played at White House Easter Egg Roll in 2008.
On this Easter Sunday, let us all pause and remember when Sean Spicer was the White House Easter Bunny in 2008. pic.twitter.com/OyhJspmOlZ
— Brian Klaas (@brianklaas) April 16, 2017
McCarthy was once again brilliant in her portrayal of the embattled, high-strung, often condescending press secretary, who fumbled over the names of foreign leaders and repeatedly told the press to shut up. This week, the “Spicey” character hit on Spicer’s recent, disturbing Holocaust misstatements, once by calling concentration camps “concentration clubs.” He also had a message for Easter, alluding to President Trump’s troubling, aggressive tweets to North Korea: “Eat as much candy as you want because this is probably our last Easter on earth!”
The sketch became more and more biting as it went on. At one point McCarthy (as Spicer) muses, “Why do you focus on every slur and lie I say?”
— Nathan'ette Burdine (@nbnylemagazine) April 16, 2017
Jimmy Fallon dons a bulletproof vest to play Jared Kushner
This was yet another week on Saturday Night Live in which non-cast members really shined as the sketch comedy show relentlessly lampooned the Trump administration. In addition to McCarthy taking on Spicer, the show’s cold open once again featured Alec Baldwin as Donald Trump, with a special appearance by host Jimmy Fallon.
Fallon has been criticized for being apolitical over the last year, shying away from open criticism on his show and even throwing softballs at Trump during an interview before the election. More recently, his show’s ratings have been falling while Stephen Colbert and the Late Show have found great success lampooning Trump. The Tonight Show has recently taken a stronger stance, and perhaps Fallon’s SNL appearance is another step toward taking stronger political stances with his comedy. Still, though Fallon appears in a sketch that is critical of Trump, and though he portrays Trump son-in-law and White House advisor Jared Kushner wearing a bulletproof vest, he is silent except for his “It’s Saturday night!” close to the cold open.
The rest of the sketch hits Trump, Vice President Pence, and White House chief strategist Steve Bannon hard. It begins with Trump reminiscing about his term so far, which has included aggression toward Syria and not much else. At one point, Pence reminds Trump how long they have to go, and Trump responds with, “Have you seen my tweets about North Korea? This could be all over by Monday.”
Trump then brings in Kushner (who he calls Koosh-Ball) and Bannon (who is dressed like the grim reaper). He declares, reality television style, that one of them will be eliminated and have to live in the basement with Kellyanne Conway. Kushner is chosen and gets to sit at the desk at the Oval Office, while Trump is left to play with toys.
With four episodes left in this season of SNL, it’s a good guess that the cast and writers will continue to hit politics hard in April and May. However, with hints that Baldwin is tiring of the impersonations and with many Americans feeling outrage fatigue, it is difficult to know what’s in store for next season.