Samantha Bee didn’t know if the actual White House Correspondents’ Dinner would happen this year, due to the fact that Donald Trump doesn’t care for the press and certainly can’t take a joke. So, she decided to host her own, and on Saturday afternoon as the media elite were gearing up for their big night, Bee used her Not the White House Correspondents’ Dinner to roast all the major media players.
“With so much excellent reporting out there, why do 96 percent of Americans believe the media should be strung up by its own bowels? I don’t know—maybe because when they turn on the TV looking for news, all they can find are journalists trying to referee a pack of well-coiffed message robots, shouting at each other all day with increasingly tiny boxes. . . Cable news has developed a critical pundit infestation. And no one’s house needs tending more than our friends at CNN. Some of you are here tonight. Hi, friends!”
Bee gave a good ribbing to CNN and president Jeff Zucker before moving on to Fox News with an “in memoriam” segment for the loss of Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly. “Let’s pause now to remember what we’ve lost,” Bee remarked. “Two media titans who were snatched—sorry—taken from us. Far too late.”
She also had harsh words for “sentient liver spot Rupert Murdoch,” who “managed to convince white people in at least three different countries not to trust foreigners. And not to trust the mainstream media. Fox’s constant taunts about liberal bias made news outlets so anxious and defensive, they now spend as much time examining themselves as a body dysmorphic teenager.”
The night also included sketches featuring such performers as Allison Janney, who revived her West Wing character, and Will Ferrell, who revived his George W. Bush impression. Watch all the clips below.