Donald Trump ‘SNL’ Appearance Delivered Ratings But Little Else

Donald Trump, the Republican presidential candidate, starred as the host for Saturday Night Live this week. Despite the massive ratings SNL pulled in with his appearance, Donald Trump and the episode have been largely panned as being a dry, choppy show that missed many opportunities to be truly funny.

USA Today’s criticism was some of the most biting, describing both the ineptitude of the host and the inability of the SNL cast. Calling it a marketing ploy for his campaign, writer Nate Scott said Donald deftly used SNL to his benefit.

“Many people thought the show would be SNL using Trump as a punch line, but the opposite became true. Trump used the show as a platform for his candidacy… So what could have been a bizarro and hilarious roast of a man turned into something that felt like an hour-long campaign commercial.”

The New York Times summed up the visit by Donald Trump by pointing to the SNL closing monologue. Usually, when guest hosts sign off the air, the SNL cast mobs them in a show of appreciation.

That was not the case for Donald Trump as he stood front-and-center with his daughter Ivanka. After ending the show, guests flocked to Larry David, but Donald had to seek out individuals to shake hands with as the closing credits rolled.

“That followed what had been more or less a campaign first from Mr. Trump: a shrug and what appeared to be a look of self-doubt,” the article described.

It wasn’t all bad for Donald Trump. In a prerecorded SNL parody of Drake’s “Hotline Bling,” the Republican front-runner showed off his moves in one of the show’s strongest moments.

Variety reported that NBC stations are already filing the required “equal time” paperwork from his SNL appearance. Donald Trump was in front of the camera for 12 minutes, five seconds of unpaid air-time, triggering a mandatory seven-day time frame for rival candidates to be able to request the same time from NBC.

An earlier article from the media outlet said that stations could potentially get away with the “equal time” ruling because of Hillary Clinton’s appearance on SNL from its season-opening show. In it, Clinton plays a bartender named Val who is serving drinks and advice to on-air impersonator Kate McKinnon, the Inquisitr previously reported.

For his part, Larry David was every bit of the sensation he was on his previous trip to SNL this season. Playing the part of United States Senator (and Democratic presidential candidate) Bernie Sander, David pulled in huge laughs asking individuals in the mock MSNBC forum to send him all their spare change, including “vacuum pennies.”

Larry David SNL

Larry also got his chance to troll Donald Trump on SNL. During the opening monologue, David yelled out “Trump’s a racist!” When a smirking Donald asked him why he said it, David responded with a line inspired by the week-long protests surrounding Trump serving as the host.

“I heard if I yelled that, they’d give me $5,000,” Larry David said, shrugging his shoulders.

“As a businessman, I can fully respect that,” Donald replies. “That’s okay.”

The irony from the monologue was the Larry actually can collect the money. The organization that put the money up for grabs, Deport Racism, tweeted that “joke or not, it’s true” and would pay him the reward money.

While it may have failed to deliver the comedic punch SNL and their audience would have hoped for, the show did deliver the ratings spike that was expected. Donald Trump brought the show’s highest ratings in the past four years, according to People.

What did you think about Donald Trump hosting SNL this weekend? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

[Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images]