Alec Baldwin Returns To Tackle White House Turmoil And More From ‘SNL’

“Saturday Night Live” returned with its first new episode after NBC’s coverage of the PyeongChang Winter Games, and kicked things off by addressing the turmoil roiling in the White House as Robert Mueller tightens the noose in his investigation into the Trump campaign’s collusion with Russia.

Alec Baldwin (or is it Alex Baldwin?) led this week’s cold open as President Donald Trump in a listening session about gun-control legislation. “Tonight I am here to bring you a message of healing and a show of unity,” said Baldwin-as-Trump, squinting as he looked at his notes. “I hear you and I care. Rent ‘Lego Ninjago Movie.’ Sorry, Eric scribbled some notes on there, too.”

RELATED: Trump Talks To ‘Fox & Friends, First Ladies Unite, Natalie Portman Raps (Again!) And More ‘SNL’ Highlights

The president also addressed his controversial steel tariffs. “Both sides hated it. I don’t care,” he said. “I said I was going to run this country like a business. That business is a Waffle House at 2 a.m. Crazies everywhere, staff walking out in the middle of their shift, managers taking money out of the cash register to pay off the Russian mob.”

NBA great Charles Barkley took to the stage of Studio 8H for his fourth time as host, “for no reason,” as he pointed out, explaining that “Lorne Michaels just wanted somebody to talk to about ‘Black Panther’.” Barkley went on to discuss why pro athletes should be speaking their minds in the current political climate while goofing on Fergie’s unhinged take on the U.S. national anthem at the NBA All-Star Game.

Barkley showed off his sillier side while taking a shot at the NRA with a faux commercial for “Roach Away,” playing a guy named Ned who has a unique solution for pest control: an army of cockroaches armed with AR-15 assault rifles, trained to take down other roaches.

Leslie Jones appeared on Weekend Update to discuss her experiences as a commentator for NBC’s coverage of the Winter Games, revealing she’s become a huge fan of women’s hockey — and was joined by Team USA’s Hilary Knight.

Barkley played himself, joined by surprise guest star Alex Rodriguez in a biting sketch about the ramifications of concussions on NFL players. The two superstar athletes discussed their careers, joined by former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker DC Timmons (Kenan Thompson), who only played in nine games but is now so addled he gives his fast-food orders to the camera and calls everybody “Greg.”

Thompson returned to play the bartender at Donnelly’s Pub & Restaurant, where last call leads to some seriously unfortunate hookups — such as the one between Sheila Sovage (Kate McKinnon) and Chubby Hunts (Barkley), who wind up making out so hilariously that both of them can’t help themselves from cracking up in the midst of the sketch.

“Saturday Night Live” airs Saturdays at 8:30 p.m. PT/11:30 p.m. ET on Global; you can also watch full episodes online.

“SNL” returns with a new episode on Saturday, Mar. 11, with “This Is Us” star Sterling K. Brown making his hosting debut, joined by musical guest James Bay.

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A Look Back At The Notable Political Impressions On ‘Saturday Night Live’

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