Donald Trump in popular culture
Donald Trump, the president of the United States since 2017, has attracted considerable media attention during his career as businessman and politician, inspiring numerous portrayals and appearances in popular culture. Trump has been represented in popular culture since the 1980s, including cameo appearances on film and television.
Art[edit | edit source]
During the 2016 election, various artworks was made to satirize Donald Trump. These include Make Everything Great Again, a street art mural by Dominykas Čečkauskas and Mindaugas Bonanu depicting Trump French kissing Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, and The Emperor Has No Balls, a series of sculptures depicting a nude Trump by the anarchist collective Indecline. Cuban artist Edel Rodriguez painted a series of anti-Trump artworks for various magazines including Time Magazine and Der Spiegel. Illma Gore also created a piece titled Make America Great Again, which depicted Trump naked. The artwork was censored on social media sites, delisted from eBay and refused by galleries in the United States due to security concerns. It attracted bids of over £100,000 after going on display at Maddox Gallery in Mayfair, London, although the artist was anonymously threatened with legal action.
Comics[edit | edit source]
Since 1986, he has been depicted in the Doonesbury comic strip by Garry Trudeau, prompting an unfavorable response from Trump. In 2016, the Trump-strips were released as a paperback, Yuge!: 30 Years of Doonesbury on Trump. Trump was also depicted in Berkeley Breathed's long-running political cartoon strip, Bloom County, since 1989 where his brain was placed inside the body of Bill the Cat after being hit by an anchor on his yacht, Trump Princess.
During the 2016 election, various comic artists satirized Trump and his campaign. For example, following Pepe the Frog's association to the Trump campaign and the alt-right, Matt Furie published a satirical take of his appropriation on The Nib.
Films[edit | edit source]
Trump played himself as the Plaza Hotel owner in a cameo appearance in the 1992 movie Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. He also appeared as a guest in many films and series such as: The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, The Job, Suddenly Susan, Sex and the City, The Drew Carey Show, Two Weeks Notice, Spin City, The Nanny, The Associate, The Little Rascals, Zoolander, and Eddie.
Another film, Trump: What's the Deal?, was screened twice in New York in July 1991, but was not publicly released until it became available on the Internet in 2015. In 2005, ABC aired Trump Unauthorized, a biographical television film starring Justin Louis as Trump. Although Trump was not involved with the film, he considered it a "great compliment", despite previously threatening to sue the filmmakers if it contained inaccuracies.
You've Been Trumped (2011), a documentary film by Anthony Baxter, follows Trump's efforts to develop a Scottish golf resort. When it was announced that the documentary was to premiere on BBC Two television in the UK, on October 21, 2012, Trump's lawyers contacted the BBC to demand that the film should not be shown, saying that it was defamatory and misleading. The screening went ahead, with the BBC defending the decision and stating that Trump had refused the opportunity to take part in the film.
Literature[edit | edit source]
The TV-series Twin Peaks (2017) features a mysterious artifact called the "Owl Cave ring". In Mark Frost's book Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier (2017), it is implied that Trump may have worn this ring.
The 2018 poetry collection Sincerity by Carol Ann Duffy, British Poet Laureate, includes a poem entitled "Swearing In". It begins "Combover ... twitter-rat, tweet-twat, tripe-gob, muckspout", includes the expressions "tie-treader", and "mandrake mymmerkin", and ends "welcome to the White House".
Music[edit | edit source]
In 2011, rapper Mac Miller released his "Donald Trump" song about rising to Trump-level riches, which became a Billboard hit. The billionaire subsequently requested royalties for using his name, starting a feud with Miller.
Television[edit | edit source]
Since 1988, Trump and members of his family have been parodied on Saturday Night Live (SNL). He has hosted SNL twice, in 2004 and 2015. Trump is one of four presidents who have appeared on Saturday Night Live, and the only president to have hosted the show. On SNL, Trump has been impersonated by several people, including Phil Hartman, Darrell Hammond and Alec Baldwin.
Trump has appeared on and been involved in WWE programming (professional wrestling) several times since the late 1980s. At WrestleMania 23, he won the right to shave Vince McMahon's hair, after betting that Bobby Lashley would beat Umaga in a match.
A 2000 The Simpsons episode shows a future where Trump has been president. Writer Dan Greaney said in 2016: "What we needed was for Lisa to have problems beyond her fixing, that everything went as bad as it possibly could, and that's why we had Trump be president before her. That just seemed like the logical last stop before hitting bottom. It was consistent with the vision of America going insane". After Donald Trump won the 2016 election, The Simpsons used the phrase "Being Right Sucks" in a chalkboard gag.
Trump hosted the game show The Apprentice and its spin-off The Celebrity Apprentice between 2004 and 2015. Further TV-projects have at times been announced and cancelled, such as Trump Tower (Showtime in 1998 and Lifetime in 2008), The Tower and Trump Takeover. Trump is portrayed in a 2005 episode of American Dad, demanding money for the use of his The Apprentice catchphrase "You´re fired!"
In April 2011, Trump attended the White House Correspondents' Dinner, featuring comedian Seth Meyers. President Barack Obama used the occasion to present several prepared jokes mocking Trump. Retrospectively, Trump claimed "I didn't feel humiliated, I had a great time. So the press is very dishonest, they don't report the truth and therefore it's just easier not to go."
On February 28, 2016, Trump was the subject of a segment of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver that was named after him. The segment, hosted by comedian John Oliver, was critical of Trump. Trump was also featured in later Last Week Tonight segments, including one regarding Trump's plans for a border wall on May 20, and another regarding Trump University.
On The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Stephen Colbert frequently features a caricature of Trump, called "Cartoon Donald Trump". Colbert's reasoning for including a cartoon version of Trump is because he felt like that Trump had resorted to "almost cartoonish tactics". Meanwhile, on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, host Jimmy Kimmel wrote two Dr. Seuss-like books: Winners Aren't Losers and its sequel Winners Still Aren't Losers. Both of these books were featured when Trump was the guest star. On the show, Kimmel would read it out loud to Trump, having Trump read the last word on both occasions.
Vic Berger, a frequent collaborator for the comedy duo Tim & Eric, created a series of Trump related videos for Super Deluxe. Each of these videos remix various Trump debate appearances with air horns and crowds chanting Trump's name.
The 2016 web series You Got Trumped: The First 100 Days takes a darkly comic look at what President Donald J. Trump's first one hundred days in office would look like. The series stars John Di Domenico as Trump and Ron Sparks as Chris Christie, his "whipping boy".
Trump was portrayed negatively in the anime adaptation of Inuyashiki, played by Bill Fleming, where he dismisses the lives that will be lost from an incoming meteor strike. Trump also makes a brief appearance in the anime Devilman Crybaby.
Hair[edit | edit source]
In 2004, the Chicago Tribune wrote that Trump is "known for his gaudy casinos and unusual mane of copper hair." David Letterman made a joke about Trump's hair in 2008, likening it to a Chihuahua. During a 2011 interview with Rolling Stone, Trump said, "I get a lot of credit for comb-overs. But it's not really a comb-over. It's sort of a little bit forward and back. I've combed it the same way for years. Same thing, every time." A gallery of photographs depicting Trump's hairstyle across four decades was published in 2015. In various late-night talk shows and interviews, Trump's hair has humorously been suggested to be a wig, so he has let the interviewers touch his hair to verify its authenticity.
In early 2011, Vanity Fair wrote that Trump would run for president in 2012, and did a series of pieces satirically comparing the birther controversy over the authenticity of incumbent president Obama's short-form birth certificate to a hypothetical 'balders' controversy over the authenticity of Trump's hair. In a June 2015 speech for his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump said he would change his hair style if he were elected. Vanity Fair published two claymation videos making fun of Trump's anthropomorphized hair in late 2015.
In Michael Wolff's 2018 book Fire and Fury, Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump allegedly described the mechanics of her father's hair as "an absolutely clean pate — a contained island after scalp-reduction surgery — surrounded by a furry circle of hair around the sides and front, from which all ends are drawn up to meet in the center and then swept back and secured by a stiffening spray,” and the color as "[coming] from a product called Just For Men — the longer it was left on, the darker it got. Impatience resulted in Trump’s orange-blond hair color."[better source needed]
In September 2016, Jimmy Fallon invited Donald Trump to be a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Trump was asked by Jimmy if he could mess up his hair. Donald Trump agreed to the offer and allowed Jimmy to mess his hair up. Following the hair incident, Jimmy was accused by critics that he was humanizing Trump after Trump had pressed more on the Zero-tolerance policy under the Trump administration. Trump later tweeted ".@jimmyfallon is now whimpering to all that he did the famous “hair show” with me (where he seriously messed up my hair), & that he would have now done it differently because it is said to have “humanized” me-he is taking heat. He called & said “monster ratings.” Be a man Jimmy!". Following that tweet, Jimmy quickly tweeted back saying that he will donate to the RAICE charity in an effort to help families being separated at the border.
See also[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
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