Once more, and for the last time this cycle, SNL’s cold open was a companion piece to Wednesday’s third and final debate.
“Tonight is going to be a lot like the third Lord of the Rings movie,” says host Tom Hanks, playing debate moderator Chris Wallace. “You don’t really want to watch, but hey, you’ve come this far.”
No one is more aware of that than Kate McKinnon‘s Hillary Clinton. Whereas in previous debate skits her Clinton was hyperfocused on trying to appear relaxed and relatable, this Clinton is is giddy, triumphant, irreverent even.
“Oh Bingo! Bingo! I’ve got bingo!” Clinton exclaims at Trump’s mention of “bad hombres,” taking out a giant Bingo card as she shares her winning quintet. “I’ve been playing all year and I have ‘bad hombres,’ ‘rapists,’ ‘Miss Piggy,’ ‘they’re all living in hell,’ and if ‘she wasn’t my daughter.'”
Baldwin’s Trump, meanwhile, remained the same, letting Trump’s real sentences and phrases do much of the heavy lifting in his characterization as the skit reimagines the audience’s reception to the debate.
When Baldwin’s Trump brings up real Trump’s “No one has more respect for women than I do,” line, the camera cuts to a few laughing audience members before panning to the entire theatre followed by a photo of the planet, laugh track playing the whole time. “Allright, allright, allright, settle down, settle down, settle down entire planet, settle down,” says Wallace.
And as in the third debate, Hanks’ Wallace asks Baldwin’s Trump whether he would “accept the results of the election.”
“I will look at it at the time because, frankly, this whole thing is rigged. Even the media. Every day, I turn on the news and all of the newscasters are making me look so bad,” he responds.
“And how are we doing that?”
“By taking all of the things I say, and all of the things I do, and putting them on TV.”