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'SNL' spoofs 'The Sopranos' in season finale

"Saturday Night Live" marked special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation first anniversary with a spoof of "The Sopranos'" final scene.

Posted: May 22, 2018 11:36 AM
Updated: May 22, 2018 11:36 AM

"Saturday Night Live's" season finale once again served up an opening political sketch that told the truth while making us laugh. This time, the iconic show ended its 43rd season with a parody of the famed last scene from "The Sopranos" series finale, where Tony Soprano sat at a diner surrounded by his family as a man glared at him from nearby.

This SNL sketch worked because its use of "The Sopranos" finale rings true. In many ways, the Trump world looks and feels like a crime family. Just consider how many people in Trump's orbit have pleaded guilty, are under indictment or are being actively investigated.

In the case of SNL's cold open, Donald Trump (Alec Baldwin) was surrounded by Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump Jr. and Michael Cohen. And while the song "Don't Stop Believin'" blared, just like in "The Sopranos" finale, Trump and his friends' conversation was eerily reminiscent of the dialogue we'd expect from a crime family. Of course, "SNL" isn't the first to make that comparison: Former FBI Director James Comey did as much in his book, "A Higher Loyalty."

Take Giuliani, played by SNL's Kate McKinnon, who boasted to Trump about his recent Fox News appearances, "I told them you were openly colluding with Russia, but then I ended with: So What!" Adding, "I even confessed to some crimes you didn't do, then I said, 'What are you gonna do, arrest the President? I dare ya!'"

Ben Stiller as Cohen then shared with Trump his concerns about going to prison: "They say I might do 20 years unless I give you up." To which Trump responded in a Tony Soprano-esque gruff way, "I've heard jail's fun. It's like camp -- plus there's a free gym; dude, you're gonna get so jacked!"

And then true to the original Sopranos scene, in walks a menacing figure who looks squarely at Trump. But this time, instead of an unknown man in a Members Only jacket, we see Robert Mueller in a dark gray suit, played by Robert De Niro. Just as Mueller is unnerving Trump in real life, as evidenced by his countless tweets about the Mueller "witch hunt," "SNL's" Trump is also clearly haunted by Mueller, asking his table mates: "Am I the only one who sees that guy?" The sketch ends with Mueller walking by Trump's table and motioning to him: "I've got my eyes on you."

But, in actuality, it looks like the real Mueller, so far, has his eyes focused on others in the Trump world. Just look at the "Trump family" and the long list of criminal charges and suspicious activities.

There's Trump's longtime lawyer and fixer, Cohen, whose offices, home and hotel were raided by the FBI in April and who is under investigation by the Department of Justice for his business dealings. Add to that, we recently learned that Cohen was paid millions by companies that wanted access to Trump, including those with business before the Trump administration.

Then there's Michael Flynn. Trump's one-time national security adviser and a visible Trump campaign surrogate, who ironically led the chant of "Lock her up" at the Republican National Convention in 2016, pleaded guilty last year to lying to the FBI about conversations with the Russian ambassador.

Former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in January 2017 about his efforts to obtain information from Russian operatives to help the Trump campaign. Trump's former deputy campaign chairman Rick Gates pleaded guilty in February 2018 to financial fraud and lying to federal investigators.

Paul Manafort, who joined the Trump campaign in March 2016 and later became campaign manager, is under indictment on numerous counts of financial improprieties -- though none has, so far, been linked to the Trump campaign. (Manafort has denied the charges and entered a plea of not guilty.)

And let's not forget Donald Trump Jr., whose June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower with Russians -- which he says was prompted by a Russian lawyer who was said to be offering dirt on Hillary Clinton -- may constitute a violation of federal election laws, if there is any evidence he then accepted or conspired to accept a contribution or "thing of value" from a foreign national. (Trump Jr., although issuing contradictory statements about the true nature of this meeting when news of it first broke, has denied wrongdoing.)

Add to that, The New York Times reported on Saturday that Trump Jr. met three months before the November 2016 election in Trump Tower with an emissary for two wealthy Arab princes and an Israeli specialist in social media manipulation who offered to help the Trump campaign. While these meetings may not be a crime, I bet even Tony Soprano would say: "You gotta be f**king kidding me?!"

Since "The Sopranos" signed off 11 years ago with a sudden switch to a black screen, a debate has raged over whether Tony Soprano escaped harm or was killed by the unknown man in the jacket. In the case of the "Trump family," a similar question is being debated: Will Trump escape unscathed, or will he be brought to justice by the man in the dark gray suit?

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1005797

Reported Deaths: 16449
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1353572119
Lake663011164
Allen57820801
Hamilton46296464
St. Joseph44311613
Elkhart35888509
Vanderburgh32214480
Tippecanoe27898258
Johnson25056445
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Porter22890365
Madison18724409
Clark18540252
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Bartholomew11602180
Warrick11287189
Floyd11082215
Wayne10965253
Grant10051220
Morgan9457176
Boone8913116
Dubois8263131
Dearborn820893
Henry8200152
Noble8017106
Marshall7916135
Cass7528121
Lawrence7447171
Shelby7176119
Jackson697289
Gibson6584115
Harrison647591
Knox6418106
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Fayette406187
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Posey376644
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Washington357651
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Sullivan328652
Starke316470
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Jay284145
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Union107016
Ohio84513
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Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1511760

Reported Deaths: 23616
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1636861666
Cuyahoga1457252442
Hamilton1050421416
Montgomery737101254
Summit614971105
Lucas56058912
Butler51383711
Stark464421056
Lorain35443584
Warren32687373
Mahoning30598675
Clermont28106326
Lake26907443
Delaware24114162
Licking23820287
Trumbull22742556
Fairfield22309246
Greene22212320
Medina21941311
Clark19757351
Richland18500285
Portage17857250
Wood17394221
Allen15905269
Miami15487299
Muskingum14737185
Columbiana13940269
Wayne13722265
Tuscarawas12643304
Marion11906175
Scioto11432161
Pickaway11346141
Erie10811181
Ross10532198
Lawrence9725153
Ashtabula9658200
Hancock9649150
Belmont9262206
Geauga8906157
Jefferson8531197
Huron8338141
Union816557
Washington8066138
Sandusky7790148
Athens773676
Knox7679141
Darke7618155
Seneca7306144
Ashland6917126
Auglaize678097
Shelby6493113
Brown633387
Crawford6245130
Defiance6162103
Mercer612893
Fulton599296
Highland596899
Madison592176
Guernsey583468
Logan582795
Clinton581191
Preble5692122
Putnam5301108
Williams526185
Perry516563
Champaign510372
Jackson506571
Ottawa484086
Coshocton478783
Morrow456656
Pike432763
Fayette427461
Hardin416678
Gallia416266
Adams415392
Van Wert369579
Henry362571
Holmes3619123
Hocking355579
Wyandot322261
Carroll300659
Paulding279147
Meigs263350
Monroe214854
Noble198946
Morgan193232
Harrison180143
Vinton165125
Unassigned05
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