If you tuned in to NBC on Saturday, you probably weren't expecting them to parody WrestleMania, but welcome to 2020. Saturday Night Live decided to have some fun with the Town Hall events for both President Trump and Joe Biden. The election cycle has provided a lot of fodder for SNL in its 46th season. Biden ended up being both Bob Ross and Mister Rogers. After that strangeness, Both candidates were taken up to 11 by Jim Carrey and Alec Baldwin. Last week skewered the Vice Presidential debates and now, the focus has to shift back to the biggest race in the land. There has been a lot of conversation surrounding how the show would handle this political season. Carrey has basically adopted an unnervingly surreal old-man caricature. While Baldwin’s version of Trump just goes all over the place and heavily relies on his well-worn pastiche of the POTUS. But, the entire situation was pretty surreal in real-life, so the only avenue they could pursue was true surrealism. Maya Rudolph even managed to make an appearance as Kamala Harris. Things are only going to get stranger.
When the decision to cast Carrey came down, a lot of people were thinking that some other comedians should actually get a shot. But the legend just wanted people to get laughs. Executive producer Lorne Michaels went ahead and explained himself.
“There was some interest on his part. And then we responded, obviously, positively. But it came down to discussions about what the take was," Michaels said of casting Carrey. "He and Colin Jost had a bunch of talks. He and I as well. He will give the part energy and strength, and … [Laughs.] Hopefully it’s funny."
With so many challenges with the virus, Michaels also opted to discuss how SNL would approach all the different production criteria.
"We need the audience, obviously. With comedy, when you don’t hear the response, it’s just different. With the kind of comedy we do, which quite often is broad, timing gets thrown off without an audience," Michaels added. "And for me, what is most important is when you’re absolutely certain of some piece on Wednesday, and then the dress-rehearsal audience sees it on Saturday and tells you you’re wrong. . . .I think us coming back and accomplishing the show will lead to — I hate to use the word normalcy — but it’s a thing that is part of our lives coming back, in whatever form it ends up coming back. So the physical problems of doing it — number of people who can be in the studio, number of people who can be in the control room, how you separate the band so that they’re not in any jeopardy — all of those are part of the meetings we’ve been having"