Saturday Night Live brought everybody’s joke alive last night when they had Larry David play Bernie Sanders in a Democratic debate sketch.
If you talked to anybody about Tuesday night’s debate, or maybe looked at Twitter even once while it was going on, you probably heard that Bernie Sanders sounds a lot like Larry David. Especially when Larry David would do his George Steinbrenner voice on Seinfeld. So when SNL decided its opening sketch would be about the debate, there was really only one person to call: the comedy legend who wrote for the show for one season in the mid-’80s and has nothing good at all to say about his experience there.
On a night of homecomings, with Tracy Morgan as host, Tina Fey returning for a 30 Rock parody and a Weekend Update walk-on, and Alec Baldwin showing up for the hell of it because that’s just what he does now, the most unexpected one was Larry David’s. Again, he was there as a writer for a year, and only got one sketch on the air. He’s never had much good to say about the show or his time there, and since he might be rich enough to just straight-up buy NBC, it’s not like he needed the money.
SNL should be ecstatic that he accepted the invitation, as it’s their first bit of political comedy from this current season to gain any mainstream attention. Not just because they made the obvious joke a reality, but because David was predictably awesome as Sanders. Right voice, right inflections, right body language: all he lacked was Sanders’ intensity. David saves a sketch that probably would have floundered without him, and immediately owns this character now; if he’s not available to pop up on SNL whenever they need a Sanders in the future, at least during the election, they should probably just write Sanders out of the scene.