I think it’s safe to say that with his opening bit, 2017 Emmy host Stephen Colbert was trying to win one himself. And honestly, he would have deserved it. With digs on everything from the HBO hack to the increasing presence of streaming platforms for our television needs, there was no topic off limits. Ever the political commentator, Colbert also spent a significant amount of time talking about Donald J. Trump. He made fun of Trump’s incessant tweeting and obsession with the entertainment industry. But no one expected for him to hit Trump where it really hurts, by bringing out his short-lived Press Secretary and White House Communication Director, Sean Spicer.
Spicer worked for the Trump administration for only six months before resigning. During, and after his tenure, he became one of the more notable players in the saga of Trump’s first year in the White House. Melissa Mccarthy has even committed to playing him on Saturday Night Live! One of Spicer’s most memorable moments came just two days after the 2017 inauguration when he insisted that the media intentionally skewed coverage of the political event so that it appeared less crowded. He claimed that it was the “largest audience to ever to witness an inauguration, period – both in person and around the globe.” That wasn’t true. But it did create a brilliant way for Colbert to introduce him to the Emmy audience.
Spicer rolled out a podium to repeat the same alternative fact about the Emmy crowd. And everyone watching was absolutely SHOOK. But two of the best reactions came from McCarthy herself and Veep actress Anna Chlumsky. Chlumsky’s jaw hit the floor, while McCarthy couldn’t do anything but smirk.
And they weren’t the only ones who couldn’t keep it together during the surprise appearance. Twitter reacted pretty strongly, too. But they didn’t think it was very funny. Not everyone thinks that a lying press secretary who doesn’t support human rights should be able to crack jokes on national television. These critics aren't wrong. But the reactions were priceless.