There are, of course, the requisite calls for boycotts. Trump has said Bad Things and people who say Bad Things are Bad—and we can’t have Bad people on the teevee after all.* More amusing, though, is this (2,200+ word!) piece over at the AV Club suggesting that SNL’s political relevance might be wiped out by this YUGE misstep. My favorite line has to be this one: “What’s most baffling to some is that SNL—routinely called out for its liberal comic biases—seems to be endorsing Trump.”
First off, you have no idea what any of the sketches will be about. How can you possibly know if this episode will “endorse Trump” or “ruthlessly make fun of him to his face while he’s there”? Secondly, though, since when has a politician’s appearance on SNL meant they were endorsing him? Even when Rudy Giuliani famously appeared on the show following the 9/11 attacks—receiving the warmest welcome any pol has ever gotten on the show, I think it’s safe to say—no one thought the show was endorsing him, as opposed to, say, “New York.”
All of this anger—all of this petulance—about a politician you don’t like appearing on a show you probably don’t even watch live any more simply reinforces Trump’s appeal as an outsider, anti-establishment candidate. He’s such an outsider that some people think he’s too edgy for SNL! You’re playing right into his hands. And, frankly, right into SNL’s. Every angry blog post and essay and think piece about Trump nets the network another thousand viewers—people who are curious about just what this CRAZY DANGEROUS LUNATIC is going to do.