Last weekend’s Saturday Night Live was quite an eventful one. As the first show of 2021, the episode was hosted by John Krasinski and featured musical guest Machine Gun Kelly who finally made his debut on the coveted NBC show.
Although there was a lot to celebrate, Saturday’s Weekend Update is receiving a lot of backlash. Both Saturday Night Live and comedian Michael Che are being accused of transphobia again.
On Jan. 30, Saturday Night Live returned for its first episode of the year. Alongside host John Krasinski, Machine Gun Kelly performed two songs off of his latest album Tickets To My Downfall. As well, he bid farewell to his debut appearance on SNL by literally falling off the stage with BFF Pete Davidson.
Although that incident earned a lot of reactions from SNL viewers, another part of the episode is catching people’s attention for a not-so-good reason. During the Weekend Update, Michael Che delivered a joke many are calling transphobic.
“President Biden signed an executive order repealing Trump’s ban on transgender people from serving in the military,” Che said. “It’s good news, except Biden is calling the policy ‘don’t ask, don’t tuck.’”
The segment begins at 2:30.
The Weekend Update segment has led to a slew of reactions online. Collectively, Saturday Night Live viewers are calling the joke hurtful and transphobic.
Me: oh yay, Biden repealed the military trans ban, there’s a poll showing even a majority of Republicans support Biden’s repeals of anti-LGBT+ actions, maybe society isn’t so transphobic
Saturday Night Live: hold my beer
— Adrian Balfour | BlackLivesMatter (@ardentbalfour) January 31, 2021
Didn’t watch SNL tonight but wasn’t surprised at all to learn that Michael Che used the lifting of the transgender military ban to be his usual transphobic self. His transphobia is not funny and he needs to ask himself why he wants to be in the same category as JKR. #SNL
— Danielle Solzman @ #Sundance2021 (@DanielleSATM) January 31, 2021
Honestly @nbcsnl we’ve been mocked enough for 1 eternity. Do better.
— Plastic Martyr (@plasticmartyr) January 31, 2021
This isn’t funny and so many people had to let this joke get to air y’all are dumb pic.twitter.com/CyYQZXEeJX
— Rose Dommu (@rosedommu) January 31, 2021
Now, this isn’t the first time Saturday Night Live and Michael Che have been accused of transphobia. Back in 2019, Che was called out after misgendering Caitlyn Jenner during another Weekend Update segment. As well, in 2016, he also used a transphobic slur during his stand-up special Michael Che Matters.
Additionally, Che’s Weekend Update co-host Colin Jost was criticized for a transphobic joke in 2016. During the Weekend Update, Jost delivered an insensitive joke regarding Tinder‘s gender identity options.
“The dating app Tinder announced a new feature this week which gives users 37 different gender identity options,” Jost said. “It’s called, ‘Why Democrats lost the election.’”
Following Che’s joke on last weekend’s Saturday Night Live, many are asking why the comedian is still on the show.
I would say fuck michael che, but I have and it’s not worth doing again https://t.co/dKP18fp2Da
— Stevie “follow me plz” Roe (@StevieRoeSays) February 1, 2021
i’ve heard michael che make way too many trans and homophobic jokes. he’s not funny and neither is @nbcsnl ❤️ yall need to grow up or take the show off the air (which u should probably do anyway js)
— ronnie (@squartney) February 1, 2021
This isn’t new. Michael Che is a homophobe and a transphobe. https://t.co/DkiGWzk0cd
— Proud American in the PNW Quarantine Zone (@Boston_2019_) February 1, 2021
Michael Che is a transphobe and a casting mistake from day one https://t.co/DnBbRYTZpt
— Madison (@Madison_Dyann) February 1, 2021
@nbcsnl Hey Michael Che, Lorne Michaels, & @ColinJost! What do we need to do to get some adequate trans representation on the show (writers, cast members, guest hosts, etc.)?#WeekendUpdate https://t.co/TZPEJ2T0nq
— Jerome Jackson (@jacksojj88) February 1, 2021
I think we can give Michael Che a break here. I mean, unless he’s had to be corrected about transphobic jokes in the past I don’t think it’s a big deal [touches earpiece] ok hold on I’m being told… https://t.co/hY2RJlFwgA
— Richard Bouchard (@indierockranger) February 1, 2021
What are your reactions to the Saturday Night Live Weekend Update segment? Let us know in the comments below.