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Bill Hader returns as 'SNL' takes on Trump firings, revives 'Californians' sketch

Two former cast members (and a 12-time host) dropped by "SNL" this week.

by Daniel Arkin /
(Left to right): Bill Hader as Anthony Scaramucci, Alex Moffat as Anderson Cooper, and John Goodman as Rex Tillerson on "Saturday Night Live" on Saturday, March 17, 2018.Will Heaht/NBC

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"Saturday Night Live" kicked off this week’s episode with a sketch that skewered the latest round of firings in the Trump administration and featured guest appearances by show veterans.

In the cold open, a parody of Anderson Cooper’s show on CNN, 12-time “SNL” host John Goodman was on hand as ousted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Tillerson, the former head of ExxonMobil, was fired by President Donald Trump this week.

"It's just crazy how one day you’re the CEO of Exxon, a 50 billion dollar company," Goodman as Tillerson lamented in a thick Southern accent. "And the next you get fired by a man who used to sell steaks in the mail."

Goodman was joined by two familiar faces: "SNL" alums Bill Hader (the host of this week’s episode) as short-lived White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci and Fred Armisen as “Fire and Fury” author Michael Wolff.

"I'm the fidget spinner of the White House," Hader as Scaramucci bragged. "I made a big splash and then one day everybody was like: Whoa, what the hell was that about?"

And as Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Kate McKinnon riffed on the firing of former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, who was axed two days before he was to retire and be eligible for full pension benefits.

"I'm just a simple man who wanted to make things bad for immigrants and now here I am taking the away the pension of a Christian white. It ain't right," McKinnon as Sessions said, referring to McCabe.

Hader and Armisen teamed up again for the second sketch of the night: A revival of "The Californians," a soap opera parody in which the two play dim-witted Los Angelenos.

Kristen Wiig and Vanessa Bayer, two former cast members who appeared in previous editions of “The Californians,” were not around this weekend. But the sketch nodded Bayer with a framed picture and an explanation for her absence: Rosa, the housekeeper character she played, had been deported.

Hader also reprised his popular "Weekend Update" character Stefon, a scenester with outrageous nightlife suggestions. The character is considered a fan favorite.

The musical guest this week was the rock group Arcade Fire.

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