Rudy Giuliani, once called America’s Mayor, is a shell of his former self politically, and the obvious parallels to the Oscar-nominated film “Birdman” were not lost on “Saturday Night Live.”
The show’s cold open was a parody of a segment on Gretchen Carlson’s Fox News show “The Real Story” featuring the former New York City Mayor.
It was biting political satire the likes of which haven’t been seen on SNL in years. Has show creator Lorne Michaels regrown some balls?
The skit plays off Giuliani’s ridiculous recent statement that President Obama doesn’t “love America” as much as everyone else, including by presumption the former mayor.
The comment went beyond ad hominem. It was absurd and clearly an attempt by Giuliani to raise his own profile. Otherwise, why make such an outrageous statement?
Portraying the former mayor as Michael Keaton’s character in “Birdman” was devastatingly hilarious.
The skit opens with Carlson, played by Vanessa Bayer, fawning over “America’s Mayor.” Taran Killam plays Giuliani and does a killer Keaton impression.
Dakota Johnson is the daughter, a role Emma Stone played in the movie. Beck Bennett plays Giuliani’s Birdman alter-ego.
SNL made its name on political humor when it was launched in the 1970s. Outside of election years, however, skits have been considerably watered down. But this week’s show was an exception.
Coupled with Johnson’s over-the-top Toyota commercial parody, in which her Dad lovingly sends her off to join ISIS, the show recalled the days of old, when it was truly must-watch television.
Let’s just hope this isn’t the exception that proves the rule, and “Saturday Night Live,” in its 40th Anniversary season, really has rediscovered the art of social satire.
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