In Today’s ‘Yeah, Obviously’ News, Sean Spicer Isn’t the Biggest Fan of Saturday Night Live These Days
Shocking, we know.
If you haven’t already watched this week’s Saturday Night Live, I’m going to recommend that you get on that as soon as possible. The show is in a political upswing, and this last episode saw the addition of another (hopefully recurring) guest actor with Melissa McCarthy playing White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer.
Like Alec Baldwin’s pucker-mouthed Trump, or Kate McKinnon’s dead-eyed Kellyanne Conway, McCarthy’s impression was funny because of its comical exaggeration, but hard-hitting because of how deeply those exaggerations cut to the all-too-accurate core of these people in power. You may not be watching Spicer’s press briefings, in which case, you wouldn’t know spot-on McCarthy’s screeching, bullying, utterly nonsensical take on the man really is.
This, for example, is pretty much the figurative representation of Spicer’s entire relationship with the press:
Spicer’s only way of dealing with the press seems to be a mix of shaming techniques (note when McCarthy yelled at the room, “I’d like to begin today by apologizing on behalf of you to me for how you have treated me these last two weeks, and that apology is not accepted”) and circuitous, gaslighting, “alternative-fact” word salad (as when she said the Muslim ban isn’t a ban and that Trump only ever used the word “ban” when quoting the New York Times quoting him–insisting “That’s your word”).
So it’s no surprise, really, that when asked for his thoughts on the last episode of SNL, his response wasn’t exactly positive. At the Super Bowl, he actually said he thought McCarthy’s impression of him was “cute” and “funny,” although I didn’t know it was even possible to sneak in this much disdain and dismissiveness to three little syllables.
“It was cute. It’s funny.” -Sean Spicer reacts to SNL’s portrayal of him pic.twitter.com/VkaSggpdIb
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) February 6, 2017
But earlier that day, he told Extra that it’s Alec Baldwin’s portrayal of Donald Trump is what he really takes issue with.
Alec has gone from funny to mean, and that’s unfortunate. SNL used to be really funny. There’s a streak of meanness now that they’ve crossed over to mean.
From the sound of it, there are a lot of hurt feelings in the White House. I’m having trouble thinking of any response other than “good.” Or maybe more accurately, “so what?”
When Spicer speaks to the press (which is, you know, his job), he’s consistently presented himself as half schoolyard bully and half painfully rambling beauty pageant contestant. In every move he makes, Trump seems bent on flouting not just the will and well-being of the American people, but the basic principles of the American Constitution. Is it “mean” to create satire around those points? If these caricatures were imitating people with less power, sure, the cartoonish (though not exactly inaccurate) take on this administration’s thin-skinned immaturity and incompetence could be considered punching down, and therefore “mean.”
But in this case, I don’t buy the “mean.” It’s unrelenting and, yes, unflattering. It’s not nice, that’s for sure. But it is satire, and therefore meant to push a message. No one is being mean to the President; no one is picking on him. SNL is calling out the corruption, incompetence, and staggering immaturity we’re seeing in our government, and doing so with comedy. When you’re the one being called out and have this extreme an inability to self-examine, then sure, I suppose having attention drawn to your failures would feel mean.
The rest of us are just grateful that this show is back to giving us a way to laugh through our terror.
(via Mediaite, image via YouTube)
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