Baldwin’s ‘Saturday Night Live’ version of Donald Trump exposes Trump’s flaws and opens a public dialogue on them.
Impersonations are not always comedic of course.
In fact impersonations have two main registers: entertainment or fraud. One is an example of silly mockery – the other is an example of identity theft.
And that of course is why impersonating President Trump is such a tricky art.
Trump is already impersonating a president — play-acting at it and offering the public the most frightening case of fraudulent posturing we have seen in presidential history.
Again and again in his public appearances Trump has already seemed like an impersonation.
He’s appeared bewildered as he meanders off topic in the middle of sentences.
His speech patterns are laughable and incoherent.
His hand gestures – staging and props add to the sense that he is just pretending.
His childish insults and adolescent defensiveness already sound ridiculous.
It’s not just that he doesn’t seem serious – it’s also that he seems so openly to be performing.
It’s hard to mock a mockery.