Kenan Thompson 'SNL' Criticism Followed by Kerry Washington Hosting

Image: Kenan Thompson 'SNL' Criticism Followed by Kerry Washington Hosting Kerry Washington

Thursday, 17 Oct 2013 05:09 PM

By Morgan Chilson

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Wednesday’s announcement that African-American actress Kerry Washington will host "Saturday Night Live" is being greeted with some suspicion as it followed so closely on the heels of Kenan Thompson’s criticism of the show’s lack of diversity.

Thompson was criticized earlier this week after he told TV Guide that "SNL" may have trouble finding talented black female comedians to join the staff because there are so few.

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But many articles also noted that the show also isn’t diverse in its hosting choices either.

And now Washington, star of “Scandal,” will host Nov. 2.

Time’s Entertainment section pointed out that it’s unlikely "SNL" was able to secure Washington’s commitment to host just since Monday when the Thompson quotes about diversity issues made the rounds.

“It is possible that the current firestorm inspired the exact moment the news was announced,” writer Lily Rothman said.

In the TV Guide interview, Thompson also revealed that he and fellow "SNL" black comedian Jay Pharaoh had let the show know they wouldn’t be dressing in drag to portray black women.

Thompson’s comments brought a lot of online grief to the comedian:



Essensce magazine put together a a list of eight black funnywomen who would be a good fit for "SNL."

Ebony’s Michael Arseneaux wrote Thompson a letter that included these harsh words:

“I don’t hate you, but know that if I could order a bolt of lightning, I’d probably have it delivered about two feet from you. I don’t want to strike you down with great vengeance, but I wouldn’t mind spooking the senselessness out of you.”

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Related stories:

'SNL' Cast: Cecily Strong Joining Weekend Update Among Changes

Miley Cyrus Parodies Shutdown — Doesn't Twerk — on Saturday Night Live

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