SNL cold open previews Trump's VP picks and the 'Summer of Trump'

2023 Night of Too Many Stars benefiting NEXT for AUTISM in NYC
2023 Night of Too Many Stars benefiting NEXT for AUTISM in NYC / Jamie McCarthy/GettyImages

Saturday Night Live aired its season finale this weekend, giving fans one final visit from Donald Trump. The former president led the cold open by previewing potential running mates and the "Summer of Trump."

Heading into the season 49 finale, there was speculation that SNL would parody the Jasmine Crockett-Marjorie Taylor Greene clash. However, cast member Ego Nwodim put those rumors to bed when she tweeted she wouldn't parody Crockett.

Instead, it was James Austin Johnson front and center once again. He stood as Donald Trump outside the New York City courtroom where the real ex-president has delivered remarks before and after his hush money trial.

"I don't like being in court," said SNL's Donald Trump, "because they say very mean things about me while I am trying to sleep." Late-night TV has relentlessly mocked Trump for allegedly falling asleep during his trial.

Johnson's Trump then described his trial as "great" and "very eye-closing." SNL's cold open also mocked Trump's gag order and included a joke about the ex-president's supporters potentially doxxing jurors.

Then, it was time for Trump to introduce his VP shortlist. Devon Walker returned as Tim Scott. The sketch roasted Scott for being among the dozens of Republicans shamelessly supporting Trump at his trial.

Heidi Gardner got her "shot" at playing Kristi Noem. The studio audience groaned as Gardner came on stage with a gun held to a stuffed dog's head.

Finally, Michael Longfellow was wheeled out dressed as Hannibal Lecter. It was a callback to a bizarre speech in which Trump called the fictional movie character "the late, great Hannibal Lecter."

The final moments of the cold open served as something as a goodbye from Saturday Night Live and its version of Donald Trump. Or, more accurately, a "see you later." Johnson's Trump declared the next few months "the Summer of Trump" as the ex-president will continue his bid for the White House while also claiming everything is rigged.

It was a reminder that this was the season 49 finale, and things will be very different when Saturday Night Live season 50 debuts in the fall. By then, we'll have a better idea of where things stand in the race for the White House and with Trump's legal problems. Time will tell if this truly will be the "Summer of Trump" or if his "eye-closing" experience in court proved costly.