A pre-taped parody of Drake’s “Hotline Bling” video offered last night’s SNL audience something mostly absent from the rest of the show: Host Donald Trump looking loose and un-selfconscious as he frugged, flipped his tie and otherwise made a fool of himself. Although he was upstaged by Ed Grimley and a full roster of male SNL stars, Trump actually seemed to be having fun in the segment. That was in stark contrast with his opening monologue and even the sketch that followed, which could have been mistaken for a campaign ad from the hopeful Republican presidential candidate’s playbook. One other bit late in the show, in which Trump’s attempted intro of musical guest Sia’s second appearance was upended when Kenan Thompson provided a loopy throwback to Trump’s 2004 hosting duties intro-ing Toots and the Maytals, also got some laughs. Otherwise, Trump seemed nervous and uncomfortable, though his uncharacteristic uptightness may have been a reaction to the mediocre material he’d been given by the SNL writers. Maybe they were nervous about the dubiousness of the entire enterprise, which had prompted protests all week from Latino and civil rights groups and a certain confusion in the general electorate over why the network that had previously cut all ties with the candidate and one-time star in its own primetime stable had delivered the real estate mogul such a valuable chunk of acreage. We’ll have the answer to that non-riddle when the ratings numbers come in.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.