Donald Trump got the Jimmy Fallon treatment on The Tonight Show Friday night, with a sketch in which Fallon impersonated Trump (orange make-up; puffy wig) interviewing himself staring into a mirror. But instead of a mirror, Fallon and guest Donald Trump faced each other. “Fallon’s a lightweight — the only one qualified to interview me is me,” said Fallon-as-Trump. “Me interviewing me — that’s a great idea!” said Trump-as-Trump. The sketch was a tedious groaner, with gags such as Trump (as Trump) saying he’d tap Kanye West as his vice president — ooh, those Fallon joke-writers: so timely!
After a commercial, Fallon did a proper interview with Trump, if you call “You’re in the lead now, right?” a proper question. (The answer from Trump, by the way, was, “By a lot!”) Fallon began the interview by saying he had to “be serious” because this was Sept. 11, and asked Trump his opinion about the effect of the 2001 terrorist attacks. “In a certain sense, I think it’s strength… There is a great strength and resilience in this country.”
But the seriousness Fallon promised disappeared after that single question. Fallon asked, “When did it become real?” — referring to Trump’s Presidential campaign. Ignoring this question as he did most of them, Trump replied with variations on things he’s said before: “The Iran deal is bad… we’re not taking care of our veterans… We have to be rich again and great again.”
Asked about Hillary Clinton, Trump said, “She’s had a very tough time, I feel very badly for her.” Asked what he thought was in the e-mails on her private server, Trump said, “A lotta bad stuff.” The audience laughed heartily.
Asked his opinion of Carly Fiorina, whose appearance Trump recently mocked, he said, “I think she’s a very nice woman. I don’t know her, I never really met her.” Not once did Fallon ask a follow-up to any of these absurd answers.
Fallon asked how Trump was going to “build a wall along the Mexican border.” “It’s gonna be a great wall,” responded Trump. “We need it, it’s outta control, we may call it the Trump Wall.”
When Fallon asked Trump if he’s “ever apologized for anything” in his life, Trump protested, “This was not supposed to be one of the questions! We had a nice sequence of questions!” Thus, the guest revealed how much of the Tonight Show interviews are scripted. Trump’s answer to the apology question was: “I will absolutely apologize sometime in the hopefully distant future if I’m ever wrong.”
Fallon concluded this ferocious grilling by suggesting new campaign music for Trump, at which point the host lip-synched to DJ Khaled’s “All I Do Is Win.”
Did I mention that Fallon said “I gotta say thank you [on behalf of] all the [Republican] candidates for bringing so much attention to the debates”? No, really: Fallon said that. Come back, Jay Leno; all is forgiven.
The Tonight Show airs weeknights at 11:35 p.m. on NBC.