Larry David as Bernie Sanders Is the SNL Role of a Lifetime

Who didn't see this coming?

The SNL writers' room strikes out nearly as often as it socks a home run. For every "Celebrity Jeopardy," there's a "Californians" or "What's Up With That?" But election season is different. The writers have so much topical material to work with every single week. They often land squarely on the zeitgeist and the resulting impressions—Dana Carvey as George Bush Sr., Darrell Hammond as Bill Clinton, Will Ferrell as George W. Bush, Tina Fey as Sarah Palin—can literally alter a candidate's public perception. (More about that here.) The party line of last week's first Democratic debate was that Bernie Sanders sounds eerily like Larry David playing George Steinbrenner. It's true! So when David stepped into a frumpy suit during last night's cold open, well, it felt pre-ordained. From the first minute, David's impression took on an intrinsically Seinfeldian slant. 

On Wall Street banks: "Why do they chain all their pens to the desk?? Who's trying to steal a pen from a bank??"

On Hillary Clinton's email scandal: "What's the deal with emails anyway??"

On his outsider status: "I don't have a Super PAC! I don't even have a BACKPACK!"

On podiums: "What are you supposed to do with your elbows??"

Did we mention he only has one pair of underwear? He only has one pair of underwear.

Elsewhere, Kate McKinnon had another strong turn as Hillary-Clinton-with-rabid-dog-eyes and Alec Baldwin was fantastic as a just-might-kill-you-Jim-Webb. (Taran Killam's Martin O'Malley was a dud, as was Kyle Mooney's Lincoln Chafee.) But this entire sketch existed to let David do his thing, and he did. Big time. Here's hoping we see more over the next year. 

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