Alec Baldwin returned to SNL after a week off to once again piss off Donald Trump, his impression of the president-elect leading off the show by being hoodwinked by Beck Bennett’s Vladimir Putin. The always shirtless president of the Russian Federation came down the chimney to deliver a gift of an obviously bugged Elf on the Shelf and talk oil business with Trump’s pick for Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson (played by a guest-starring John Goodman). Trump’s Twitter silence thus far seems to indicate that someone on his staff has been hiding his phones again.
But what the Donald should be madder about is “Hillary Actually,” a pointed pitch directly at those voters who will be casting the usually ceremonial electoral votes on Monday. Cribbing from that Love Actually scene where Andrew Lincoln confesses his love for Keira Knightley, Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton shows up at elector Cecily Strong’s door to make a silent, cue-card appeal for her to switch her vote. Noting that Strong doesn’t have to even vote for her, Clinton offers alternatives like John Kasich, Tom Hanks, The Rock, a rock—anyone but Donald Trump.
McKinnon and Strong do great, silent character work throughout, with Hillary’s pitch noting that she’s never actually seen Love Actually (or a single other movie, for that matter), going on a long-winded run about her qualifications (Strong gestures for her to skip ahead), and presenting a list of very real reasons why Strong (and the actual 37 electors necessary to stop Trump becoming president) should take this drastic step. In all its Trump material, SNL has gotten a lot of mileage out of simply stressing the actual, irresponsible and or/evil bullshit that Trump has done. Here, McKinnon’s expressions make the case that Trump is not remotely up to the job. After all, he’s pissed off China (again) and blown off security briefings while he meets with the likes of Kanye West and beefs online with Vanity Fair about the magazine’s bad review of his steakhouse. And that was just this week
She also unfolds a very long card with a litany of other, verifiable sins such as:
As much as Baldwin’s be-wigged bluster gets under Donald Trump’s skin, it’s the more nuanced, imaginative, and, in this case, brutal broadsides that show SNL coming up with more original methods of attack. Like when McKinnon’s Hillary ends with one, final card bearing the stark legend, “He will kill us all.”