Saturday Night Live opened this week’s episode with a parody of the final 2020 presidential debate between former vice president Joe Biden and President Donald Trump.
In a departure from their first meeting, when Trump repeatedly interrupted and heckled Biden, Thursday’s debate was significantly less chaotic — thanks in part to a newly implemented “mute” button.
"It was either that or tranquilizer darts," said Maya Rudolph, who stepped in to play moderator and NBC News correspondent Kristen Welker instead of her Emmy-winning role as Sen. Kamala Harris.
Also for Saturday's cold open, Jim Carrey returned to portray the Democratic presidential nominee for the fourth week in a row while Alec Baldwin once again played the president. Later on, Kate McKinnon appeared as Trump's former lawyer Rudy Giuliani.
The parody kicked off with the topic of the coronavirus pandemic. "We're rounding the corner. In fact, we've rounded so many corners we've gone all the way around the block and we're back where we started in March," Baldwin's Trump said, while Carrey's Biden called the nationwide increase in cases as the "third wave."
After downplaying the spikes in Florida, Arizona and North Dakota and more, Baldwin's Trump spoke about the vaccine and testing positive for the virus. "In just couple of weeks, if you vote for me, the vaccine will be here and will be distributed by the military. The Army will come and shoot it with a cannon into your face," he said. "I had it, it was very mean to me but I beat it and now the doctors say I can never die. And the virus said, ‘Sir, sir, I have to leave your body.’ And the virus was crying. Very sad."
Then, Carrey's Biden called out the president for not having a plan for the pandemic. "You don't even have a plan for me. First I'm creepy, then I'm sleepy. You say I have dementia, then you say I'm a criminal mastermind," he said.
"I can't show you my plan, it's under audit just like my taxes,” Baldwin's Trump responded, adding that the vaccine was coming "somewhere between two and 700 weeks."
After briefly speaking about race and climate change, both men wrapped their debate with Carrey's Biden addressing voters directly.
"Look everybody, you know who he is, and you know who I am. I'm good old Joe. I'm reliable as a rock," he said. "I don't have a golden toilet seat, I have the soft, spongey one that hisses whenever I park my keister. There's only two things I do: I kick ass and I take trains — and I don't see any trains in sight."
"Good luck America," Rudolph's Welker said before signing off with the show's signature opening catchphrase.
Have questions about how to vote ahead of the Nov. 3 election? Use vote.org to check your state-specific information about registering to vote, voting by mail, early voting, finding your polling place and more. Early and mail voting are already underway across much of the country, while many states also allow voters to register at their polling places on the same day they cast their ballots.
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