Despite Protests, Donald Trump Gives SNL its Biggest Ratings in Years

9 Nov 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Donald Trump Blurs Entertainment and Politics.

It may have been petitioned and protested, but Saturday Night Live’s choice to have Republican presidential candidate and megalomaniacal billionaire Donald Trump host paid off for the show, which earned its biggest overnight ratings since 2012. Comedian Larry David will receive $5,000 for “heckling” Donald Trump during the Republican presidential candidate’s “Saturday Night Live” monologue this weekend, a political group said Sunday.

According to NBC, SNL scored a 6.6 household rating, easily topping the season’s previous high, the 41st season premiere which was hosted by Miley Cyrus and with a guest appearance by, ahem, Hillary Clinton. The business magnate’s appearance on the show had been prefaced by weeks of controversy (over his history of racist remarks) with figures including LA R&B singer Miguel and advocacy group Deport Racism raising concerns about SNL lending their platform to Trump.

He is a reality TV star – the former host of “The Apprentice” – who is moving closer toward becoming the GOP presidential nominee and, if his campaign succeeds, he could end up as the most powerful man on Earth. In the scripted bit, David, who had reprised his role as Bernie Sanders in the show’s cold open, yelled, “You’re a racist” as Trump finished his monologue with impersonators Taran Killam and Darrell Hammond.

The Deport Racism PAC had offered a $5,000 bounty for “anyone on the set of the show or in the studio audience who yells out or gets on camera during the live TV broadcast clearly heard in the TV broadcast saying “Deport Racism” or “Trump is a Racist.” In fact, Trump’s overnight rating was 47 per cent higher than the Clinton episode. “I get the best ratings,” he reportedly said when asked about his appearance beforehand. “Huge”, Trump might say, who previously hosted the show in 2004. He showed his ability to master TV again on “SNL,” using the occasion to call attention to his boisterous and confrontational approach to politics and his business career as a real-estate developer.

Hours before the show’s live broadcast, dozens of protesters marched from Trump Tower to NBC’s studio in Rockefeller Plaza, chanting in both English and Spanish and carrying signs. And in case you were wondering what life may be like if – and when? – Trump were to win the presidency, SNL painted a colourful 2018 picture that included peace and a Trump casino in Syria, Russian President Vladimir Putin crying for being called “loser”, and that Trump getting that long-desired wall between Mexico and the U.S. installed, but on Mexico’s dime. This was at its most uncomfortable during the ‘Live Tweeting’ sketch, where his ‘tweets’ about a banal restaurant scenario played uncomfortably upon perceptions of Trump as racist. The former US Apprentice head honcho – who appeared on SNL in that guise in 2004 – was just like Alan Sugar in his jerky gesturing and unnatural autocue reading.

And apart from a moment in which two of the show’s cast members impersonated him, there didn’t really seem to be much reason for him even being there, let alone hosting the show. The only humiliating thing the writers managed to coax Trump into doing was a parody of Drake’s oft-mocked ‘Hotline Bling’ video, in which the rapper dances his own unique routine.

Whether or not Larry David – fresh from playing Democrat hopeful Bernie Sanders – meant it, the moment was planned, a pre-emptive strike against anyone else disrupting the show with political issues, after Deport Racism offered $5,000 to anyone who would do do as David did. Isn’t he fantastic?” The other impersonator made a stab at criticism with the remark, “You’re being very naïve and quite frankly, you’re fired.” But the overall impression was that the hard-edged satire for which “SNL” had been known in the past had faded badly in Trump’s case and was replaced by only gentle and tepid teasing. He told CNN and Fox he would hit Islamic extremists “really hard” to deprive them of revenue from the oil fields they control, but refused to provide details about what he was talking about. Of course, this isn’t fair to the American electorate, which needs such details to properly evaluate whether to install Trump as their next commander in chief.

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