Dave Chappelle returned to TV last night to host the first post-election SNL in the most pressurized scenario imaginable. With Donald Trump as the President-Elect, protesters in the streets, and the country divided, Chappelle had to wring laughs out of a tense, seemingly unfunny situation. And yet, the former star of his own excellent Comedy Central sketch show strode on stage with the confidence of a seasoned performer. "I know it's been a long time," the somewhat reclusive comedian said. "So please be patient."
There was no need for patience: Chappelle killed. "America's done it, we've actually elected an internet troll as our president," he said towards the beginning of his set. In the 10-minute monologue, he touched on Trump, the Pulse nightclub shooting, ISIS, President Obama's legacy, and even delivered a perfect hot-air balloon joke. The set was a reminder that Chappelle is still an essential and hilarious comedic voice in America.
After describing a memorable night spent in the West Wing of the White House filled with other black people (and Bradley Cooper for some reason), Chappelle ended on a note of hope. "I'm wishing Donald Trump luck and I'm going to give him a chance," he said towards the end of his set. "And we, the historically disenfranchised, demand he give us one too."