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Love him or hate him – because there really is no in-between these days – no candidate currently in the running for the 2016 Presidential race seems more ripe for parody than Donald Trump. The Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon was happy to provide such parody last night.
Made up as Trump’s doppelganger, Fallon sits in front of the Republican candidate as trump “interviews himself.” The Tonight Show segment touches on just about all of the facets of Trump that make him easy to spoof – from the obvious, to the more in depth. They mock Trump’s ego, his mannerisms, and even his equivocation when it comes to his stance on certain public policies. Although he occasionally cracks up during the sketch – which he has done as far back as his SNL days – Fallon does a remarkably good job of imitating Trump, from his facial expressions all the way down to his pronunciation of “huge.” Throughout the interview, Trump maintains his composure and gets a few good laughs in, but there is an underlying tension to the whole thing. Trump has recently shown a somewhat thin skin when attacked by his dissenters, and he definitely appears agitated as the sketch progresses.
Ever since Donald Trump officially announced his candidacy for President on June 16 of this year, the media has had a field day with his statements as well as his image. Some of it has been played for laughs – such a trailer for the upcoming Deadpool, which replaces the Merc with the Mouth with The Trump himself -- while much of it has proved quite serious in tone. For example, while Trump appeared on NBC’s The Tonight Show, he recently had a falling out with the major network after he was fired for his comments about Mexican immigrants bringing crime into the country.
Appearances such as these have become integral to winning Presidential elections over the years. They allow candidates to appeal to a wide audience, while showing a degree of humility that they cannot express in their campaigns. In past elections, Barack Obama ran ads in popular video game franchises, while Mitt Romney appeared on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. However, some of these appearance work better than others; while Trump’s appearance on The Tonight Show mostly gets the laughs it aims for, Senator Ted Cruz’s recent attempt to “audition for The Simpsons” fell horrifyingly flat.
As previously mentioned, because it is so difficult to tell whether or not Trump was in on the joke last night, it is impossible to tell if his appearance on The Tonight Show will help or hurt his campaign. If we can be sure of one thing, it’s in the coming months that the 2016 Presidential election will provide us with a major source of entertainment and comedy.