White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer has reacted good-naturedly to comedian Melissa McCarthy’s scathing portrayal of him in a satirical sketch this weekend on “Saturday Night Live.”
The entertainment-news show “Extra” said on its website that Spicer, interviewed Sunday at the Super Bowl at NRG Stadium in Houston, remarked jocularly that McCarthy “could dial back” her impression of him. While that comment did not appear in a video clip that has since been removed from the site, chewing-gum aficionado Spicer did tell correspondent A.J. Calloway that, “I think Melissa McCarthy needs to slow down on the gum chewing,” adding with a laugh, “Way too many pieces in there!”
Spicer said he first became aware of the sketch, which went viral, “this morning on my way out of church. I saw my text had been lighting up so I . . . thought there was either a national emergency or something really funny happened. And it turns out it was that clip from ‘Saturday Night Live.’”
He separately told Brian Kilmeade of “Fox & Friends” that he thought the sketch “was cute. It was funny,” and called “SNL” “part of American culture.”
Additionally, Spicer told Calloway of “Extra” that he felt Alec Baldwin’s recurring “SNL” impression of Donald Trump, which the actor reprised Saturday for the first time since the inauguration, has “gone from funny to mean, and that’s unfortunate. ‘Saturday Night Live’ used to be really funny. And I think there’s a streak of meanness now that they’ve kind of crossed over into.”
In her eight-minute sketch, surprise guest McCarthy, dressed in drag with a comb-over, parodied Spicer’s tone with the media. Mimicking his high-pitched voice, McCarthy brought up his “rocky” start with the media. “In a sense, when I say ‘rocky start,’ I mean it in the sense of ‘Rocky,’ the movie, because I came out here to punch you! In the face!” she yelled, adding, “Now I’d like to begin today by apologizing on behalf of you, to me. For how you have treated me these last two weeks. And that apology is not accepted!”
At other points, her Spicer fires on the press corps with a water gun, uses tortured doublespeak to avoid answering questions, asked for a show of hands as to who hated New York Times and former Newsday reporter Glenn Thrush (played by Bobby Moynihan), attacked the press corps with his podium and showed that he had had a CNN reporter caged.