Feathers were ruffled when the show added six new cast members to its ranks this fall and, among them, there wasn’t a person of color and only one woman, making the 2013-14 season the sixth in a row that the long-running series would not have a black female in its cast.
Thompson, who has spent his last few seasons on the show playing nearly every black female celebrity, has thrown in his cross-dressing towel, TVGuide.com reports. As for what the show will do now when the need to spoof a black female celebrity arises, he says, “I don’t know. We just haven’t done them. That’s what I’m saying. Maybe [Jay Pharaoh] will do it or something, but even her doesn’t really want to do it.”
It seems like a reasonable stance for the actor to take, and it’s certainly commendable that he’ll no longer aid the show in ignoring its dearth of racial and gender diversity, but where Thompson opts to place the blame is problematic. Rather than blame showrunner Lorne Michaels or anyone else behind the scenes on the show, he points to a lack of worthy black female comedians. “It’s just a tough part of the business,” he claims. “Like in auditions, they just never find ones that are ready.”
So, there you have it. “SNL” wants to hire black females, it’s just that there isn’t a single talented one in the country worth hiring.
Do you think “SNL” has a diversity problem?