'SNL' Cold Open Takes Jab at NBC Over Trump Town Hall

'Saturday Night Live' Cold Open
Will Heath/NBC

Saturday Night Live got in a few digs at its host network NBC in the Oct. 17 episode, which closely followed the network’s broadcast of President Trump’s town hall.

The president’s town hall aired opposite Joe Biden’s town hall on ABC and sparked controversy when over 100 top showrunners, producers and stars petitioned Comcast and NBCUniversal executives.

The cold open opened with a spoof Biden’s town hall, with Jim Carrey returning to impersonate the Democratic nominee. "NBC laid a thirst trap for President Trump," a scroll announced at the top of the cold open, hinting at the controversy surrounding the network's devision to air the town hall at the same time as Biden's ABC broadcast.

"Are you ready for softball questions for folks who are already voting for you?" Mikey Day asked, playing George Stephanopoulos in the spoof of Biden’s town hall, which was quickly interrupted with Trump’s concurrent broadcast. Alec Baldwin returned to play Trump, and Kate McKinnon played "surprise badass" Savannah Guthrie.

"I’d like to start by tearing you a new one," McKinnon’s Guthrie said, asking Baldwin’s Trump to denounce white supremacy just as Guthrie had at the real-life town hall.

The cold open switched between the Biden and Trump broadcasts and included spoofs of Mr. Rogers and Bob Ross, while McKinnon’s Guthrie asked about Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis. "My doctors say my lung is beautiful," Baldwin’s Trump said.

Maya Rudolph also returned to play Biden running mate Sen. Kamala Harris.

Given the fact that the Trump impersonator himself, Baldwin, and former castmember Taran Killam were among those who criticized NBC, it was unsurprising that the show addressed the issue.