Saturday Night Live’s decision to let Donald Trump host this week has caused a flood of controversy (that will no doubt lead to enormous ratings), but when he hosted last time nobody seemed to care. It was April of 2004 and The Apprentice had been on the air for just a few months, but it was already a ratings juggernaut. “It’s great to be here at Saturday Night Live,” he said in his monologue. “But I’ll be completely honest, it’s even better for Saturday Night Live that I’m here. Nobody is bigger than me. Nobody is better than me. I’m a ratings machine.”
This was just a couple of weeks before John Kerry secured the Democratic nomination for president, but in 2004 Trump wasn’t talking too much about politics. Instead, he was doing his usual shtick of bragging about his incredible wealth and the many beautiful women from his past. “I’ve made love to women who have won prizes for their beauty,” he said. “But not anymore because now I have a great girlfriend. It’s true.”
Midway through the monologue, he brought out Daryl Hammond as his “replacement” that he could send into future meetings when he was too busy. Jimmy Fallon then came out dressed as NBC President Jeff Zucker, who introduced supposed new shows like Fruits and Nuts, Queer Guy With a Lazy Eye and Law & Order: Queer Squad. (Friends was about to end its 10-year run and the network was more than a little short on hits.)
This week’s Trump monologue will probably offer a little more than Queer Eye for the Straight Guy jokes, and we’re sticking by our prediction that Trump will portray Jeb in a debate skit that opens the night. Daryl Hammond is the show’s announcer now, but he seems to have passed the Trump impersonation onto Taran Killam. No matter what happens, expect to see wall-to-wall coverage of the show on Sunday, not to mention historically “yuuge” ratings.