Saturday Night Live continued its commentary on the Trump administration Saturday, introducing two new faces to play the president's personal lawyer Michael Cohen and Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Ben Stiller and Robert DeNiro played the roles perfectly, picking fun at the investigation, Cohen and Mueller, and even themselves and their on-screen history. There's one line from the Mueller Cohen SNL cold open that perfectly captures the actors' chemistry and the hilarity of the skit.
DeNiro plays Mueller and portrays him much like his character of the father in Meet the Parents, the film from 2000 that both DeNiro and Stiller starred in. And just like the movie, DeNiro administers a lie detector test to Stiller. Only that this time the goal is to protect the country, not his daughter.
“If you’re innocent, you have nothing to worry about,” DeNiro’s Mueller tells Stiller's Cohen to start. He then begins with the questioning. “How’d you like that pee-pee tape?" Mueller asks. "I’m kidding! Relax. We’ll get to that later." But instead he asks a plethora of other questions — all leading up to this line. At the end of the interview, Mueller tells Cohen:
Now you listen to me, you little weasel. I don’t know what rights you think you have, but you broke the law, and now we’re gonna catch all you little Fockers.
The other lines of questioning focused on Stormy Daniels and the payment that Cohen made for her non-disclosure agreement with Trump. "It was supposed to be a surprise for Stormy,” Stiller’s Cohen says. “A gift, like a rock you throw through a window with a note tied to it that says, ‘Stop talking.'"
DeNiro's Mueller asks Cohen if Trump knew about it. Cohen says no, and the lie detector graph starts going crazy. "I think you're lying," Mueller says. "A little."
Saturday's episode began not directly with DeNiro and Stiller as Cohen and Mueller but rather SNL's Kate McKinnon as Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Beck Bennett as Vice President Mike Pence. The two have a conversation about the week in Trump world, and Pence tries to reassure Sessions. "In a couple of months the president will be back to normal,” Pence says. When Sessions asks how, Pence responds, "Because it’ll be me."
The two are interrupted by an assistant and Sessions jumps to the conclusion that he must be the next target of Mueller. "Oh, no! Are they here for us?" Sessions asks, putting his hands up. "I'll go peacefully!"
Then comes in Stiller's Cohen, who was tricked to come into the office thinking it as for something else. "That’s right, it’s Michael Cohen, attorney at law. And also sometimes not at law,” he says upon entering. “Can you believe what they’re doing to poor Mr. Trump? It’s a disgrace! This whole raid was a complete violation of attorney-criminal privilege.”
The SNL Pence tells Cohen that he's got nothing to worry about if he doesn't have anything to hide. "Is that a Joke?" Stiller's Cohen responds, incredulously. “Look we got a real problem here, Jeff,” Stiller continues. “Do you know how much evidence I have in my office? I’m Donald Trump’s lawyer. I’ve got a whole hard drive that’s just labeled, 'Yikes!'"
Cohen tells Sessions that he messed up by recusing himself from the Russia investigation. "You should have protected Mr. Trump," Cohen says. "He's a fragile flower. And he also happens to be the smartest, kindest, sexiest, least colluding man on this planet that I call Earth."
The key part of the scene, though, is the interrogation with Stiller and DeNiro sharing the screen. Stay tuned for the sequel.