TV Critic’s Corner

Sean Spicer weighs in on those ‘SNL’ sketches

Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer in New York City in April.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images/file
Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer in New York City in April.

Sean Spicer, remember him? President Trump’s former press secretary is a very giving guy. First he gave his integrity away, to lie for the president. He gave us the indelible and absurdly comic image of a man hiding “among” the bushes to avoid reporters. He gave us the phrase “Holocaust centers,” for when it isn’t convenient to use “concentration camp.” He gave his hostile stage manner to Melissa McCarthy, who essentially won an Emmy for impersonating him on “Saturday Night Live.”

And now he’s giving us a book, a memoir called “The Briefing: Politics, the Press, and the President,” which came out this week, a year after he left his White House job. We didn’t ask for it, but he wrote for us anyway — that’s just how giving he is. Hey, all he wants in return is a few bucks.

In the book, Spicer writes about how he found out about McCarthy’s brutal take on him. He was in church the morning after the first Spicey sketch: “Throughout the hour, while I sat in church, I heard the buzzing of my phone,” he writes. “Glancing down, I saw the screen fill with text messages. As soon as church let out, I looked down with horror to find Twitter ablaze with my name. What was it now? At first, I feared something truly terrible had happened.”


When he got home, he watched the sketch. “Taking a deep breath, I went to the DVR and saw Melissa McCarthy wearing my suit, downing gum by the bucket (guilty as charged, but never at the lectern), and yelling at the media,” he writes. “I had no choice but to laugh. Like many SNL sketches, I think they milked it too long, but there was no denying it was funny.”

Last year on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” he said that becoming a laughing stock “cost me a lot of money in therapy.” But ultimately, he writes in the book, the sketches didn’t bother him: “When you play in the NFL, you can’t complain about getting tackled.”

Matthew Gilbert can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.