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Alec Baldwin won an Emmy for playing Trump on “SNL” in performances that have been mostly caricature. But Johnson nails the twice-impeached Trump’s voice and speech pattern. Vanity Fair called him the “best Trump impersonator of all.”
But don’t take VF’s word for it. Check out some of Johnson’s viral Trump riffs on Twitter:
OMG TRUMP UNLEASHES 'FURY' ON BIDEN ADMIN IN TRIUMPHANT CPAC SPEECH: "UNDER [BIDEN], BOWSER... TOO BIG, [SUPER] MARIO CAN'T KEEP UP!!" pic.twitter.com/cv7lqEkldf
— James Austin Johnson (@shrimpJAJ) February 28, 2021
Johnson began doing stand-up as a teenager in the Nashville, Tennessee, area and later worked on his Trump material in Los Angeles. He told Vanity Fair that audiences responded better when he toned down his own “left-wing anger” and did a more off-the-cuff abstract take on Trump rather than playing off his real-life quotes. The rules to his Trump material are simply: “Trump is not written out, and he’s not rehearsed.”
“Even though I’m a comedian that does voices in his act all the time, I think that the rambling, frustrated complaining is as much a way to sound like the president as physically distorting my voice to sound like him,” Johnson told Mashable in 2020.
Here are a few more impressions, with Johnson’s Trump rambling on Pokemon and “Sex and the City.”
OMG DON CLAIMS HE "BEAT" POKEMON, HAS NOT CAUGHT 'EM ALL... TRUMP: "GAME ENDS WHEN YOU BEAT ELITE FOUR" pic.twitter.com/xSHxHCtlkG
— James Austin Johnson (@shrimpJAJ) November 4, 2020
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.