Saturday Night Live’s Take on Kellyanne Conway Demonstrates the Show’s Sharp Edge

Kellyanne Conway can now join Sean Spicer among those in the Trump administration who’ve been lacerated by the newly sharp-edged SNL.

The Feb. 11 episode of Saturday Night Live continued the show’s very recent trend of meaningful engagement with a presidential administration that’s more visibly interested in the franchise than any before it. Hosted by Alec Baldwin — the show’s resident impersonator of President Donald Trump — the show took on both White House Press Secretary Spicer, played by Melissa McCarthy in a repeat of her performance the previous week, and Conway, the controversial Counselor to the President. The latter, particularly, was a brilliantly uncharitable performance that seemed designed to rattle her public image and, more significantly, her standing in the administration. It was a startling reminder of just how hard-edged SNL can be when, finally, it wants to be.

Conway was depicted in an unsubtle homage to Glenn Close’s character in Fatal Attraction, breaking into CNN host Jake Tapper’s home in order to violently plead with him to be featured on his show and create more news for herself. As a take on the character, it’s light years more developed in sophistication and edge than the show’s first gloss, whereby born provocateur Conway was actually frustrated by her freewheeling boss and trying to clean up his messes. It was also gruesome, gratuitous fun, finding giddy joy in the art of going almost too far. Conway, as played by Kate McKinnon, was untrammeled and unbound by the laws of physics; the taped bit ended with her falling…