Sean Spicer is less than impressed by Melissa McCarthy's "SNL" imitation

Trump's press secretary is more gracious than his boss, but not by much

Published February 6, 2017 9:12PM (EST)

 (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump's press secretary may be reacting better than his boss to the "Saturday Night Live" skit imitating him, but not by much.

In an interview with AJ Colloway of "Extra" on Sunday, Sean Spicer admitted that he hadn't heard about Melissa McCarthy's impression of him until after he attended church on Sunday morning. He criticized McCarthy's performance as exaggerated and argued that she "needs to slow down on the gum chewing; way too many pieces in there." Although he acknowledged that "Saturday Night Live" is a "funny" show, Spicer opined that McCarthy might want to "dial back" a bit.

The press secretary was much less generous about Alec Baldwin, who later that evening performed a skit in which he alienated several world leaders before ceding the White House desk to Chief Strategist Steve Cannon.

"Alec has gone from funny to mean, and that's unfortunate," Spicer said. "'SNL' used to be really funny. There's a streak of meanness now that they've crossed over to mean."

Spicer concluded the interview by discussing President Trump's friendship with New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick, who he said Trump would support by watching Super Bowl LI later that night.

Spicer's confrontational attitude with the press has been a source of enormous controversy since Trump won the 2016 presidential election. Perhaps the most notorious incident occurred last month when Spicer threatened to evict CNN's Jim Acosta for being "rude, inappropriate and disrespectful." This is consistent with the attitude toward the media cultivated by Bannon himself, who has referred to the press as the "opposition party."


By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a professional writer whose work has appeared in multiple national media outlets since 2012 and exclusively at Salon since 2016. He specializes in covering science and history, and is particularly passionate about climate change, animal science, disability rights, plastic pollution and a wide range of political issues. He has interviewed many prominent figures (reflecting his diverse interests) including President Jimmy Carter (1977-1981), Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak (1999-2001), animal scientist and autism activist Temple Grandin, inventor Ernő Rubik, epidemiologist Monica Gandhi, theoretical cosmologist Janna Levin, mRNA vaccine pioneer Katalin Karikó, philosopher of science Vinciane Despret, actor George Takei ("Star Trek"), Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Lieberman (2000), Ambassador Michael McFaul (2012-2014), economist Richard Wolff, director Kevin Greutert ("Saw VI"), model Liskula Cohen, actor Rodger Bumpass ("SpongeBob Squarepants"), Senator John Hickenlooper (2021-present), American Public Health Association Executive Director Georges Benjamin (2002-present), comedian Bill Burr ("F Is for Family"), comedian David Cross ("Scary Movie 2") and right-wing insurrectionist Roger Stone.

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Donald Trump Melissa Mccarthy Melissa Mccarthy On Saturday Night Live Sean Spicer