Normalizing assassination

It’s interesting that there was so little media coverage of a recent SNL skit implicitly portraying the assassination of President Trump. Can you even imagine the endless outrage if they had portrayed the implicit assassination of his predecessor? There would have been literal riots in several cities.

Saturday Night Live has parodied The Sopranos’ iconic last scene for its season finale, bringing back Alec Baldwin to play President Donald Trump.

The new episode’s cold open begins with Baldwin’s Trump picking a song from the jukebox at Holsten’s in Bloomfield, New Jersey – just as Tony Soprano did in the mafia drama’s 2007 series finale.

Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ blares through the diner as the bell above the door jingles, and in walks Rudy Giuliani, played by Kate McKinnon.

Baldwin’s Trump asks if he’s been on Fox News lately to which he answers ‘twenty times last night’, adding ‘I even confessed to crimes you didn’t do — what are they gonna do, arrest the President? I dare ya!’

In walks guest star Robert De Niro, portraying Muller. But Baldwin’s Trump is the only one who seems to notice him, as the rest of his coterie peppers him with inane legal advice. In a moment layered with multiple film references, the Mueller character gets up and walks slowly to the bathroom as the Journey song continues to blare. He pauses and turns to Baldwin’s Trump, pointing two fingers at his own eyes and then at Baldwin, the ‘I see you’ gesture De Niro’s character did in Meet The Parents.

The scene then cuts to black, just as the final scene of the Sopranos did to much controversy. Though fan theories on the Sopranos finale differ, many believe that Tony Soprano was killed by a hitman, who was seen walking into the diner’s bathroom shortly before the scene cuts to black.

By making it Mueller, SNL is giving itself plausible deniability. See, it’s just a metaphor for a legal and political takedown, right? But the combination of the hit scene with De Niro – remember, as Vito Corleone, he initially makes his mark by murdering Don Fanucci – is the real meaning underlying the skit.

Fortunately, it appears the God-Emperor is more than ready for this enemies.