The 'SNL' Alien Invasion Cold Open Highlights Trump's Very Real Problem With Facts
On Saturday, actor Alec Baldwin returned to Saturday Night Live to reprise his role as President Trump. In the episode's cold open, SNL and Baldwin called Trump's use of sources into question. As he so often does in his SNL sketches, the fake Trump highlighted a very real concern about the controversial president.
Saturday's show began on the scene of a military base, with SNL's Kenan Thompson warning of an alien invasion. He briefed his soldiers with an inspiring pep talk, then introduced the commander in chief. Wearing a flight jacket and his signature Trump "pout," Baldwin took to the stage with a celebratory, "What a beautiful day." The rest of his message was certainly not beautiful.
As the aliens moved closer and closer, the satirical Trump's facts didn't exactly line up with the military's intelligence. He called their planet "fantastic," and he claimed that they weren't just now arriving. "I actually heard the aliens are already here," he said. "They've been hiding in this country for hundreds of years — it's a fact." He identified SNL cast members Leslie Jones and Sasheer Zamata — both of whom are black — as would-be aliens.
Most importantly, Trump's supposed source for this information wasn't the FBI or the CIA, but rather a radio show called Infowars. The show is hosted by Alex Jones, who is known for his far-right, conservative opinions. Sure, the intelligence and the scene were fake, but the show is real, as is Trump's apparent problem with facts.
The sketch seemed reminiscent of the wiretapping claims Trump made on Twitter last weekend. He tweeted that the Obama administration had used surveillance tactics on Trump Tower during the campaign, comparing the alleged wiretapping to President Nixon's Watergate scandal. The Obama administration denied the claims, but the Trump administration called for a congressional investigation nonetheless. Come to find out, the White House's case was reportedly built on flimsy media reports that were conflicting at best and unconfirmed at worst.
The cold open also touched on Trump's volatile relationship with the mainstream media. During the sketch, the president says he can't watch NBC's This Is Us because "NBC has been very unfair to me." The irony of SNL appearing on NBC was plainly obvious. Ultimately, the satirical sketch show won't return until April, but it left viewers with a strong message about the president by calling into question what he sees as fact.