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President Biden blames 'Spider-Man' for COVID-19 surge in 'SNL' sketch

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President Biden blames 'Spider-Man' for COVID-19 surge in 'SNL' sketch
James Austin Johnson did his impression of President Joe Biden again on this weekend's edition of "Saturday Night Live." Photo courtesy of NBC 

Jan. 16 (UPI) -- Saturday Night Live cast member James Austin Johnson played President Joe Biden in a cold open comedy sketch that saw the leader of the free world blame the recent surge in COVID-19 cases on people going to see Spider-Man: No Way Home in cinemas.

"America, I'm here to tell you, there's one simple thing you can do to make this whole virus go away: Stop seeing Spider-Man," Johnson as Biden said in the 7-minute segment, which was set up as a mock White House press briefing.

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"Think about it. When did Spider-Man come out? Dec. 17. When did every single person get Omicron? The week after Dec. 17. Stop seeing Spider-Man. That's really all I have to say."

"Did you really just blame the entire spread of Omicron on people seeing Spider-Man?" one incredulous journalist asked.

"I did. Yes. Next question," Biden replied, further clarifying he isn't trying to get people to stop going to the movies altogether. "I said, 'Stop seeing Spider-Man.' See anything else."

The superhero blockbuster has earned more than $1.5 billion at the global box office since its release.

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This weekend's edition of SNL was the show's first with a full cast and live audience since December.

The most recent episode on Dec. 18 featured a live monologue from guest host Paul Rudd, but mostly pre-recorded segments with the ensemble due to the rise in COVID-19 cases in New York.

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