Apparently, progressives aren’t the only ones trying to imagine a world where Trump isn’t president.
In a Saturday Night Live cold open based on It’s a Wonderful Life, Alec Baldwin’s Donald Trump and Keenan Thompson’s angel visit a reality in which Trump was never elected president, attending a holiday party full of returning cameos: Ben Stiller’s Michael Cohen, Matt Damon’s Brett Kavanaugh, and Robert De Niro’s Robert Mueller.
”Wow, everyone looks so different. What are those things on their faces?” Baldwin asked.
“Those are called smiles,” Thompson replied.
Pretty much everyone in the Trump orbit seemed better off in this alternate reality. White House press secretary Sarah Sanders (Aidy Bryant) had gone into PR at Trump’s suggestion, making lots of money working for Facebook, the dating site Ashley Madison, and the Romaine Lettuce Association.
People’s love lives were doing better, too. Kellyanne Conway (Kate McKinnon) and her anti-Trump husband George were on speaking terms, and Kellyanne looked healthier, partly because “I’m no longer eaten from within by lies.”
Melania (Cecily Strong) and Donald’s relationship had been improved by divorce, as had Melania’s English: “Being around you all the time was hurting my language skills,” she revealed. “You’re still smocking hot,” Baldwin told her, mocking Trump’s recent “smocking gun” typo.
It’s been a while since the real Donald Trump tweeted about Saturday Night Live, but this sketch and its implications seemed to especially upset him, with the president tweeting this morning that the show was a “Democrat spin machine:”
A REAL scandal is the one sided coverage, hour by hour, of networks like NBC & Democrat spin machines like Saturday Night Live. It is all nothing less than unfair news coverage and Dem commercials. Should be tested in courts, can’t be legal? Only defame & belittle! Collusion?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 16, 2018
The highlight of the sketch was Matt Damon as not-so-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who in this reality was not on the bench. “Me, on the Supreme Court? With my temperament? Are you insane?” asked Damon incredulously when Baldwin brought it up. “But on the plus side when I tell people that I like beer, they find it charming and not like I’m threatening violence.” Damon again fluctuated magnificently from teary — the calendars made a return — to fiery, though this time he was fired up to party.
But the cameo that seemed to really get under the real Trump’s skin was Stiller’s Michael Cohen, who, as well as being in unusually high spirits in this alternate reality, rattled off (now ironic) affirmations of their “close” relationship. “I would never ever flip on you,” said alternate reality Cohen, who in this reality flipped on Trump and then did an interview about it. “You’re my best friend.”
“And since it’s Christmas,” Stiller said meaningfully. “I just wanna say that you taught me everything I know. Every single thing I’ve done is because you directed me to do it.”
The Cohen jokes seemed to really affect the president, who tweeted next that Cohen only flipped because the FBI raided his office.
Remember, Michael Cohen only became a “Rat” after the FBI did something which was absolutely unthinkable & unheard of until the Witch Hunt was illegally started. They BROKE INTO AN ATTORNEY’S OFFICE! Why didn’t they break into the DNC to get the Server, or Crooked’s office?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 16, 2018
At the end of it all, fake Trump had an epiphany: “I guess the world does need me to be president after all.” “Yeah, that was not the lesson at all,” said Thompson. Trump wished to be president again and his wish came true, with the sketch returning to color just as a bell began to ring.
“Listen, Donald,” said McKinnon’s Conway. “Every time a bell rings, someone you know quits or goes to jail!”