“Saturday Night Live” had the last word on Rick Perry’s struggles this weekend, stretching his 54-second memory lapse into a nearly six-minute opening sketch.
SNL’s take actually started by weighing in on the Herman Cain harassment allegations.
“The important thing is, for every woman who has come forward, there are two who have not,” Keenan Thompson says in his portrayal of the former pizza chain executive.
A confident Perry, played by Bill Hader, then predicts he’s going to “nail it” in the latest debate. And then soon enough, he forgets the third of three federal agencies he said he’d scrap if elected president.
“C’mon man, I said ‘oops,’” Perry said when pressed. “Boy debates are hard, right guys?”
As the moment is stretched out, the camera pans to the other Republican hopefuls begging for the moderators to move on.
“I want to be president, but not like this,” says Mitt Romney, played by Jason Sudeikis.
“Make it stop. Somebody make it stop!” Rick Santorum shouts.
Cain even promises to share the “vivid details” of his trysts. “And there are a lot!”
“I can’t say stuff good,” Perry says, banging his head against the podium.
Ultimately Romney comes over to console Perry, and offers to take him out to pasture, as it were.
The unfolding race for president -- and particularly the endless string of Republican debates -- has provided plenty of fodder for the ensemble comedy show. One of the season’s most prophetic sketches showed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie trying to sell skeptical Republican donors on Romney. Later that week, the real Christie endorsed the former Massachusetts governor.
There was little doubt for this latest episode that Perry’s epic gaffe would be revisited three days later. The parody of Wednesday’s Michigan debate actually came two hours after the conclusion of yet another meeting of the GOP hopefuls, this time in South Carolina. Some of the show’s writers skipped the dress rehearsal to watch the event in case there was any new material.
There was another sketch planned for the show based solely on Cain’s scandal, but it was scrapped before the live show aired.