Kenan Thompson stirred up quite the controversy when he blamed Saturday Night Live’s lack of diversity on Black comediennes not being “ready” during auditions. And, now, a group of talented sisters have responded.
During the cold opening of the Nov. 2 show, SNL responded to the intense criticism over its lack of Black female actresses with a satirical skit that found host Kerry Washington portraying First Lady Michelle Obama, Oprah and Beyonce.
It is moments before the White House state dinner, and a cast member portraying White House Press Secretary Jay Carney enters the room and tells “Michelle” that Oprah Winfrey has arrived, so she better go change clothes.
“Michelle” looks confused, then she realizes that “Carney” is telling Washington that she has to change into her Oprah costume.
She then asks, “Oh, because of the whole… and Kenan won’t do it?”
After she exits the room, words scroll across the screen apologizing to Washington for the number of Black women she will have to play during her hosting gig because they don’t have any Black, female cast members.
This morning on the Tom Joyner Morning Show, Roland Martin talked with Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of Color of Change, about the organization’s demand that SNL’s founding producer, Lorne Michaels, meet with them by Nov. 6 with concrete resolutions to ‘SNL’s diversity problem.
“When Kenan Thompson went out in the media and said that Black women simply weren’t really ready for that show, that’s when we started to look at this matter,” said Robinson. “In 39 years of SNL, only 3 Black women have been part of the cast, but the show consistently covers and highlights the images of Black women.”
“Continued Robinson: “We want to get some definitive answers, in terms of what they plan to do next to ensure that this does not simply continue to be a laughing matter, but something that they solve.”
See a talented, diverse group of Black comediennes prove just how “ready” they are in the clip below: