The 17 Funniest Sketches From 'Saturday Night Live's Politically Charged Season 42
By Zach Seemayer
Between Donald Trump's unexpected rise to the presidency to Sean Spicer and Kennyanne Conway's unconventional relationship with the press, this season of Saturday Night Live, which came to an end over the weekend, has been one of the most political seasons in decades – and found a rich vein of material to tap on a weekly basis.
However, aside Alec Baldwin and Melissa McCarthy's celebrated guest starring roles, SNL also struck gold with some hilarious new characters (like Kate McKinnon's Debette Goldry), beautifully shot pre-taped segments and good, old-fashioned sketch writing.
Check out our list of the absolute best bits of comedy from the past season below. [Note: These entries are presented in chronological order, and do not include some of the season's amazing monologues, as they weren't technically sketches.]
1. "Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton Debate Cold Open"
Alec Baldwin's debut as Donald Trump during the first presidential debates with Hillary Clinton remains one of the star's boldest and most memorable appearances of season 42. While many of his turns as President Trump have been hilarious, his first will remain an indelible SNL memory.
2. "Live Report"
When a sink hole swallows up a parking lot, an intrepid on-the-scene reporter (Kenan Thompson) gets sidetracked by the confusion relationship between a gorgeous woman (Margot Robbie) and her laughably unremarkable husband (Mikey Day).
3. "Actress Round Table"
Classic Hollywood actress Debette Goldry (Kate McKinnon) makes her SNL debut discussing the bizarre horrors of being a woman in show business back in the 1940s – like being forced to take opium injections to keep her quiet on set, and getting paid in broaches.
4. "A Day Off"
A look inside the life of Kellyanne Conway (McKinnon) as she tries to enjoy a relaxing day with her family, but her bosses' constant gaffes get in the way of her peace and quiet.
Before the hit Netflix sci-fi series returns for Season 2, the Duffer Brothers (Alex Moffat and Day) give fans a sneak peek at some of the mysteries they will be explaining in the upcoming episodes – namely, where the hell are Lucas' parents?
A clothing line for women who are "beautiful, strong, and gorgeous at any size." CHONK!
7. "A Girls' Halloween"
Three best friends (Cecily Strong, Vanessa Bayer and Aidy Bryant) go out for a laid back Halloween celebration, which quickly spirals into a drunken spiral of crying and bad decisions.
8. "Election Night"
A hopeful and optimistic Election Night results party gets somber as the votes are tallied and America gets a new president. The outcome is shocking for everyone except one partygoer (Dave Chappelle).
Do you want to live in an America free from hate, prejudice? An America where the most recent election never happened? An echo chamber where everyone shares the same progressive views? Then The Bubble might be the right, exclusive planned community for you.
10. "Wells For Boys"
Not all boys want to play with G.I. Joes or tree forts. Some little boys just want to whisper their dreams into a well and contemplate life's innate solitude. Fisher-Price has just the thing for your sensitive young man.
11. "Through Donald's Eyes"
A surreal (and often nightmarish) look at life through the eyes of President Trump – who apparently sees himself as John Cena when he looks in a mirror. This is easily one of SNL's most fascinating takes on the president's psyche, and one of their most creatively ambitious pre-taped sketches in recent memory.
12. "La La Land Interrogation"
Two cops (Strong and Beck Bennett) need to get to the bottom of one man's (Aziz Ansari) indefensible crime: not loving La La Land.
13. "Attorney Ad"
At the law firm of Broderick and Gans, one of the two lawyers is clearly better than the other, and one of their clients (Ansari) is just realizing this as he films a commercial for the firm.
After getting caught with alcohol on campus, a group of University of Connecticut students are forced to attend Dry Fridays, and swap drinking stories. However, one student (Kristen Stewart) has some stories that put everyone else to shame, and make everybody super uncomfortable.
15. "Sean Spicer Press Conference"
Melissa McCarthy made her surprise debut as White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, and redefined what a political impression could do. While she went on to reprise the role four additional times, her first loud, dynamic and shocking spot-on portrayal was a grand slam homerun, and might be the stand-out sketch of the entire season.
16. "Girl at a Bar"
A young woman (Strong) comes to a bar to meet her friend, but keeps getting approached by outspoken male feminists, who actually have ulterior, creepy motives.
An up-and-coming commercial director (Bennett) is super excited to be the man behind Pepsi's exciting new politically charged ad, featuring Kendall Jenner solving racism with soda. Right as the commercial is about to start shooting, the director gets some concerning feedback about the ad's tone-deaf message, but it's too late to make any changes. This timely, perfectly performed sketch works so well because it feels like this was something that absolutely must have happened in real life.