After White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s astounding series of Holocaust flubs this week (and isn’t that a fun phrase to read in in 2017?), Melissa McCarthy’s phone must have rung off the hook until she agreed to return to Saturday Night Live. But making jokes about the Holocaust—even in the context of the Trump administration’s embarrassing habit of flip-flopping between crypto-anti-Semitism and plaintext anti-Semitism—is the kind of thing that could get people who don’t work for Donald Trump in a lot of hot water. Fortunately, Spicer’s latest screw-up came on the anniversary of another great moment in Trump administration legend: his work as the White House Easter Bunny during the Bush years.
Somehow SNL’s makeup team got McCarthy’s Sean Spicer face to survive its encounter with the inside of a giant bunny head, and the visual gag softened the horror at the fact that, yes, the White House press secretary was in such a hurry to defend a U.S. missile attack that he forgot very basic facts about Hitler. McCarthy’s previous appearances as Spicer used other cast members as skeptical reporters, but since the beleaguered press secretary spent the last week arguing with himself (or at least arguing with whatever bullshit he’d said about Hitler 15 minutes ago), this week she went solo. It’s just as well: No one should have to share the stage with Melissa McCarthy in an Easter Bunny costume, and she doesn’t really need a straight man. Besides, the language is the real star here. “Holocaust centers” was such an inspired phrase on Spicer’s part that no writers’ room could top it, but SNL’s “concentration clubs” is a pretty good effort. Better still is Spicer’s wish that “the nitpickers could try to see the big picture and didn’t solely focus on every little slur and lie I say.”
Things get a little bogged down when Spicer uses VeggieTales dolls to mangle the story of Passover, but like all the best comedy these days, the sketch ends with a reminder that, as a country, we love white supremacy so much that we elected a man who will probably get us all killed regardless of skin color, religion, or even the content of our characters. Now that’s funny.