Dave Chapelle pretty much singlehandedly sent Saturday Night Live ratings through the roof, allowing the late-night comedy program to reach new records.
Last week’s episode, with musical guest A Tribe Called Quest, aired just days after the nation shockingly elected Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States. So, whoever was going to take the stage needed to come with some real fire — and Chapelle did just that. But would you expect otherwise?
According to Live+Same Day ratings from Nielsen, the November 12 episode had the most viewers and highest ratings since 2013, when Jimmy Fallon hosted and Justin Timberlake was the musical guest.
In case you missed it, Chapelle’s opening monologue was complete with quips, jabs and, of course, constant reminders that somehow the people of this nation put Trump in the Oval.
“America’s done it, we’ve actually elected an Internet troll as our president,” the comedian said. “The whites are serious. Never seen anything like it. Haven’t seen white people this sad since the O.J.”
Chapelle went on to joke about other major current events, including the killing of Harambe the gorilla and Black Lives Matter. “Why do we have to say that Black lives matter? I admit, that’s not the best slogan, but McDonald’s already took ‘you deserve a break today.'”
The comedian was a fan pleaser, but it turns out, viewers didn’t get a chance to see all the tricks Chapelle had up his sleeve. There was one skit cut from the show that showed the 43-year-old as an arrogant swan.
In the visual, titled “Motel Painting,” the swan, voiced by Chapelle, is situated in a motel painting surrounded by water and ducks. The ducks seem to think the swan isn’t pulling his weight around the pond. “Oh, wait, I’m sorry, do you have a long, gorgeous neck?” Chappelle says. “Have you inspired countless ballets?”
The ducks clap back, “There was one ballet.”
“And what was it called?” Chappelle says. “It wasn’t called Duck Lake.”