Campaign season is really getting underway for the 2016 presidential election. The Republican National Convention is currently going on in Cleveland, and the Democratic National Convention will kick off on July 25 in Philadelphia. News outlets, including those ranging from cable to comedic, have been providing coverage on the conventions. Saturday Night Live will be contributing to the coverage with two special weeknight editions of the "Weekend Update" segment with hosts Colin Jost and Michael Che. SNL is currently on a break from airing new episodes, and weeknight episodes are very rare for the series with "Saturday" in the title, but the conventions are special occasions that definitely deserve the full "Weekend Update" treatment.
The first special edition of "Weekend Update" will air on July 20 at midnight, which places it on the second-to-last day of the Republican National Convention. The second will air on July 27 at midnight, which will follow the events of the second-to-last day of the Democratic National Convention. Both specials will air on MSNBC, according to Vulture. Colin Jost and Michael Che will work as press during the day for Today on NBC.
It should be interesting to see how SNL handles the coverage of the candidates. Donald Trump hosted an episode of SNL that drew in huge ratings for NBC, although he wasn't quite as funny as some of us might have expected. The show has never pulled its punches when it comes to Trump - who is now officially the Republican candidate for president - and he's definitely delivered some great material for classic "Weekend Update" lampooning so far in the RNC. Still, NBC has gotten into trouble over the past year for some of its SNL political dabblings. Given some of the events of the RNC so far, the first "Weekend Update" special should definitely be worth checking out. Hopefully, the special for the DNC will have as much material for laughs.
Colin Jost and Michael Che haven't been co-hosts of "Weekend Update" all that long. Jost took over for Seth Meyers on the segment when Meyers left SNL early in 2014, and Che replaced Cecily Strong later that year. This will be the first presidential election that the duo will cover together for SNL.
The RNC has already provided late night television with some notably great comedy. Stephen Colbert crashed the convention, then brought in Jon Stewart for an appearance on The Late Show to kick off the Cleveland festivities. Daily Show alum Samantha Bee dropped by Cleveland for a scathingly funny Full Frontal look at the RNC.
The 2016 presidential election has been filled with controversy, mud-slinging, and even social media ugliness, so plenty of us are in need of some laughs about the current campaign shenanigans on both sides of the political aisle. The RNC and DNC special editions of "Weekend Update" could be just what we need to get through another week of election coverage, and it'll be nice to get some unexpected SNL in the summer.