The better half of Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update" couple Michael Che is under fire for a botched joke about Kanye West and Caitlyn Jenner, that ended with Che appearing to misgender and deadname the trans celebrity.
"I mean, he used to be one of the coolest Black dudes on Earth now he's showing up to events in sweatpants and orthopedic sneakers, listening to Kenny G and trying to get Black people to like Trump," Che said, according to USA Today. "It's like, how long before this guy changes his name to Cathy."
The joke continued: "Now, you might think that I'm crazy, but about five years ago, there was a fella named Bruce Jenner, and he moved to Calabasas," Che said cutting his sentence short for comedic effect.
Immediately, the joke was labeled transphobic online.
SNL just made a Caitlyn Jenner joke that was so bad and transphobic that you could hear someone in the audience say “Noooooo”
Some have made the point that Che didn't really mislabel Jenner, given that he used "fella" and "Bruce Jenner" in an abstract, past tense manner. The more offensive part of the joke seems is the implication that Kanye going off the rails and Caitlyn transitioning are similar journeys.
@nbcsnl Michael Che, I’m disappointed in your comparison of Kanye West, a cis man, to Caitlyn Jenner, a trans woman… https://t.co/CbtJHED7pj