“Saturday Night Live” took stock of the United States in 2021, including its polarized politics, illogical investor market and disorganized vaccination rollout and asked if America “still works.”
The cold open, with Kate McKinnon as the host of a fictional talk show, “WHAT STILL WORKS?” pondered whether or not the country was completely dysfunctional.
Guest Marjorie Taylor Greene (Cecily Strong), a conservative Republican congresswoman from Georgia who has expressed belief in QAnon, greeted McKinnon by offering her a weapon: “Thanks for having me. Gun?”
“So, Congresswoman Greene,” McKinnon said, “hard to say those words together.”
Greene listed some of her beliefs: “I believe 9/11 was a hoax. Did anyone actually see it happen? I think that the California wildfires were caused by Jewish space lasers.”
“The lasers identify as Jewish?” McKinnon asked.
“Correct,” Green said.
“You’re a U.S. representative?” McKinnon asked.
“Yes,” Green said.
Next, McKinnon welcomed the fictional Derrick Evans (Pete Davidson), a gamer described as GameStop’s new majority shareholder. Evans tried to explain the populist investor wave ridden by GameStop, which saw its stock price soar after fans on Reddit embraced it to defy institutional investors.
“People download all their games now so we’re kind of, what do you call it?” he said.
“A dying business,” McKinnon said.
She shifted gears to ask if the rollout of vaccines to fight the Covid-19 pandemic was “working.”
Guest O.J. Simpson (Kenan Thompson) was described as among the first three percent of Americans to receive a vaccine.
“Hey,” he said, “guilty as charged.”
Finally, Tom Brady (host John Krasinski), whose performance as a quarterback helped the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reach the Super Bowl, was introduced as an example of something in America working.
“You might be the only thing in America that still works,” McKinnon said. “So I guess everyone must be rooting for you, right?”
“It’s not like you’re a weird Trump guy or anything, right?” she said.
“Thanks for having me,” he responded before getting up and walking off.
An “SNL” spoof of a fictional TV show called “Blue Georgia” looked at the state after it elected two Democrats as U.S. senators.
The town sheriff, played by Krasinksi, explained to his cousin from New York, played by Davidson, that he’s in Democrat country.
“You see, Georgia’s all blue now,” the sheriff said at a restaurant. “I don’t know if you saw the election on the news.”
“This is Stacey Abrams country,” he said after a customer in a “Make America Great Again” hat came into the restaurant.
“The republic of ‘Stankonia,'” a diner chimed in.
The menu’s special was avocado on gluten-free toast. But the dream of a California-like Georgia was burst when a health inspector (Melissa Villaseñor) entered and noted that not one person was wearing a mask.
News segment “Weekend Update” caught up on some news, including the Capitol riots.
“Hey, now the terrorist watch list includes white people,” co-host Colin Jost said. “It’s important to see yourself represented.”
Michael Che noted that a section of California’s famed coastal Highway 1 collapsed near Big Sur following heavy rain. But he said he didn’t believe harsh weather caused the mudslide.
“I hate to agree with Marjorie Taylor Greene,” he said, “but I think it was Jewish space lasers.”