NEW YORK — “I’m not giving up and neither should you.”
That’s how Kate McKinnon began this week’s “Saturday Night Live” — in what was one of the more somber and emotional openings in the history of the longtime NBC variety show.
McKinnon — dressed as Hillary Clinton — sat at a piano and played Leonard Cohen’s hit, “Hallelujah.” There were no Donald Trump jokes and there was no Alec Baldwin.
Once the song ended, McKinnon looked at the camera and told viewers not to give up before delivering the show’s iconic catchphrase: “Live from New York, it’s Saturday night!”
The episode follows a tumultuous post-election week that has seen protests in multiple cities nationwide.
The opening was a poignant tribute to both Clinton and Cohen. The singer and songwriter died Monday.
Comedian Dave Chappelle, who hosted the show, performed an opening monologue about Trump’s victory and the current climate of the country.
“We actually elected an internet troll as our president,” Chappelle said to big laughs.
But Chappelle’s jokes about the President-elect ended on a serious note.
“I’m wishing Donald Trump luck and I’m going to give him a chance,” Chappelle said. “And we, the historically disenfranchised, demand that he gives us one too.”