‘SNL’ Cold Open Bounces Between Trump and Biden’s Exhausting Town Halls

The late-night show recreated a painful cross-network duel between the incumbent and prospective nominees.

SNL returned last night with another mock-up of the ongoing presidential showdown between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

This week’s cold open took on Trump and Biden’s “dueling town halls,” recreating an exhausting night of bouncing between two distinct strains of high-stakes rambling with Alec Baldwin and Jim Carrey reprising their roles as the White House contenders.

Leading with Biden’s almost too wholesome interview with George Stephanopoulos on CNN, Carrey’s Biden lulled his audience of four with drawn-out responses that veered into adorably tangential nonsense. Meanwhile, on NBC, Baldwin’s Trump faced off with an amped Savannah Guthrie (portrayed by Kate McKinnon,) who made a sturdy case for her consideration as a future moderator in the next round of debates by actually holding the president accountable for intentionally spreading conspiracy theories and his lack of leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has now claimed the lives of nearly 220,000 Americans and counting.

With each flip of the channel, Biden grew more harmless (eventually donning a crimson red Mr. Rogers vest, and later, a Bob Ross wig and canvas,) while Trump’s interview slipped further into raging delusion. At one point, towards the close of the segment, Maya Rudolph’s Kamala Harris steps in to check on the lone black woman cheering the president on from the wings, just before the sketch’s players usher the show in with a hallmark “Live from New York” send-off.

Last night’s episode was hosted by Issa Rae, who marked her SNL debut with a monologue that admitted how she, like the rest of us, had very little going on in the pandemic era. Rae appeared in a number of live and pre-recorded sketches, including one that caught the attention of a certain Chicago rapper-turned-presidential-hopeful (more on that in a bit.)

You can watch SNL‘s cold open above.





Zo is a staff writer at Okayplayer where he covers music.

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