Michael Che Agrees With Trump That ‘SNL’ Shouldn’t Be Too One-Sided
Michael Che is one half of Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update anchor pairing, along with former head writer Colin Jost. The Weekend Update host is not always the easiest or most comfortable job for a comedian, particularly in these tumultuous times. Despite the fact that SNL is generally considered a liberal-leaning program, Che and Jost's brand of humor and their handling of the political landscape has been attacked from all sides of the aisle.
Jost recently came under fire for a joke that insinuated that niche gender identification terms have contributed to the failure of the Democratic Party, while President-elect Donald Trump has accused the show of being unfairly biased against him:
And that's just the controversy from this past week.
During presidential election cycles, SNL has taken on the unique and sometimes impossible responsibility of delivering worthwhile comedy while also contributing thoughtfully to national political discourse; which means that no matter what they say or do, there will be a group of people who feel genuinely offended, hurt or even betrayed.
"I honestly agree with him. Oddly, I agree with him. We try to write that way. But the thing that Donald Trump doesn't understand is that when you're that ridiculous, it's kind of hard to talk about anything else. You have this ridiculous orange billionaire doing stranger and stranger things, what else is there? But I do agree with him. I think the show should show all views and we make a conscious effort to do so. That's why I loved "The Bubble" sketch. That was a great sketch poking fun at ultra-liberals. We put him on the show when he was the most controversial man, and people said that wasn't fair. I don't think he has much grounds to speak on that because, if anything, we've been the most friendly show to him. We've been accused of that. But comedy should take both sides. No matter who is in power, we should be making fun of them."
So what Che is saying here is that it's not unfair for Trump to expect that SNL employ a more bipartisan political critique; which is a very slippery slope. Yes, the show has garnered praise over the years for its masterful ability to poignantly and hilariously roast politicians of all shape, size and party affiliation, but that doesn't mean that they now owe politicians - or even Presidents - their impartiality.
Saturday Night Live is a comedy sketch show that happens to sometimes wade into political relevance. That's it. They cannot and should not be assigned with the task of fairly and accurately informing the masses. There are places where people should be able to go and trust that they are being given the factual truths about the state of our government.
No matter how good SNL may sometimes be at engaging politically, a late-night, network comedy show doesn't owe it to us to be a no-spin zone because that idea directly contradicts the nature of comedy. Most of the time, it's the spin that actually makes something funny.
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