In its first show for 2021, SNL caused some controversy when John Krasinski, in his opening monologue, kissed Pete Davidson on the lips.
The premise of the kiss was that fans wanted to see Krasinski kiss Pam, his love interest in The Office, but as she wasn’t on set so he kisses Pete Davidson instead.
While it won’t go down as one of television’s most passionate kisses, it did cause concerns among some who pointed out that making a joke of two men kissing was homophobic.
“Ending a comedy bit with two straight men kissing is not the same thing as accepting gay people and couples for who they are,” David Oliver wrote in an op-ed for USA Today. “When something that should be seen as ‘normal’ is seen as ‘spectacle,’ we’re moving in the wrong direction.”
The controversy was not the first, with SNL having a troubled track record with gay jokes, however, lesbian cast member Kate McKinnon was a bright light for queer humour in the most recent episode.
McKinnon portrayed a version of herself interviewing various public figures, including QAnon supporter Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (Cecily Strong), in a sketch called “What Still Works?” In an exchange with Twitter founder Jack Dorsey (Mikey Day) over whether his beard “works,” McKinnon replied, “It’s working in terms of keeping me a lesbian.”