‘Twas three nights before the election when all through Studio 8H, Jim Carrey’s Joe Biden was stirringly trying to exorcise the ghosts of Democratic losses past. “If you’re like most Americans, you’re excited to vote, but very, very worried about the outcome,” the former Veep — and possible future POTUS — remarked, if anything understating the extent of the American electorate’s worries. So on the final Saturday Night Live before Election Day, “Biden” decided to help alleviate those concerns by reading a modernized version of Edgar Allan Poe’s immortal poem, “The Raven.” Playing the part of the Raven? None other than the Democratic candidate who fell short of the Oval Office finish line the last time around: Hillary Clinton.
Make that Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton, returning to SNL for the first time since 2017. And she had a ready response to Biden’s optimism about defeating President Trump. “Quoth the Clinton,” he started, before she picked up the cue: “We lost before.” Biden quickly spoke up in protest: “I said Raven, stop being such a drag — we’ve got this one in the bag. That’s what every pundit says from shore to shore.” Every pundit that is, quoth Hillary, except Michael Moore, who has been warning that voters are being undercounted at the polls. “Also,” she added, bringing the mood down further, “even if you do win on Tuesday, the election could still be stolen from you.”
Biden still refused to be consumed by doubt, though. “I said, ‘C’mon! No one would dare; I’ll be sworn in fair and square. All the votes will be accounted for” — which led Clinton to invoke the name of the last Democratic candidate whose fate was decided by the courts. “Just like Al Gore?” Just before flying the coop, she gave Biden a boost of confidence, while also putting a fine point on the real reason why he may succeed where she failed in a match-up with Trump. “Your real advantage is, you’re not a woman — you’re a man!”
Twitter was overjoyed to welcome McKinnon’s Clinton back after a three-year absence.
— Love Reality (@LoveReality9) November 1, 2020
— Raul Carvajal (@NycAnarchy) November 1, 2020
can kate just be Biden
— tweepla (@tweepla) November 1, 2020
— Colin Munro Wood (@ColinBMWood1969) November 1, 2020
— nat (@sufferingsapph0) November 1, 2020
— TheDolphinWitch (@dolphin_witch) November 1, 2020
At the same time, some people did admit that McKinnon’s Clinton routine inspired triggering flashbacks to Election Night 2016.
@HillaryClinton thinking aboutyou a lot today. I watchedKateMcKinnon’s cold open on SNL, remembering how devastated we were.I took my 12yr old daughter proudly,to vote for you.I bought your book,saw you in Philly.I just can’t stop thinking how muchbetter the worldwould havebeen❤️
— lauren anderson (@lolagraces) November 1, 2020
Gross, I don’t want to see any iteration of Hillary Clinton right now, this is giving me PTSD. #SNL
— MilkSteak & Jellybeans (@Tallulahs_Ghost) November 1, 2020
— Colleen McCreary (@Chiefpplofficer) November 1, 2020
It’s worth remembering that McKinnon made one of her most memorable appearances as Clinton the week after Trump controversially won the election. The Nov. 7, 2016 episode opened with the comedian performing a deeply emotional version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”
The host of that episode was Dave Chappelle, and it’s surely no coincidence that Chappelle will be hosting next week’s post-election SNL as well. Tune in to see if Carrey and McKinnon will be performing a triumphant duet of “The Winner Takes It All” or drowning their sorrows in a cover of “Beautiful Loser.”
Saturday Night Live airs Saturdays at 11:30 p.m. on NBC.
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