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The Times
  • Today's News: Our Take - SNL Addresses Diversity Problem with Kerry Washington as Host

  • WithScandalstarKerry Washingtonhosting this week,SaturdayNight Livetook the opportunity to have a little fun at its own expense.
    The episode built its entire first sketch around the concept that Washington would be tasked with playingMichelle Obama,Oprah WinfreyandBeyonceall in the same skita winking reference ...
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  • With Scandal star Kerry Washington hosting this week, Saturday Night Live took the opportunity to have a little fun at its own expense.
    The episode built its entire first sketch around the concept that Washington would be tasked with playing Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Beyonce all in the same skit - a winking reference to Kenan Thompson's recent comments about the lack of women of color on SNL.
    But was it funny? First-time host Washington's other characters for the night included a sassy assistant, a militant college professor and "Miss Uganda" in a beauty pageant sketch.
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    Check out some of the highlights below. What did you think of the episode, and how did Washington do as host?
    White House Cold Open: Here, President Obama (played by Jay Pharoah) plays host to a slew of visitors in the Oval Office - all of whom happen to be famous black women,and all of whom are played by Washington. (And if the joke is too subtle on its own for viewers, a scrolling message during Washington's first costume change apologizes for the number of black characters she has to play.)
    Monologue: Washington's thrilled to be hosting SNL for the first time, but the cast keeps mistaking her for her Scandal character, Olivia Pope, and asking her to handle crises in their personal lives.
    Page 2 of 2 - "What Does My Girl Say?": In this hilarious parody of Ylvis' "The Fox," Pharoah plays a guy who's sick of dealing with the insecurities of his jealous girlfriend (Washington).
    How's He Doing?: In light of President Obama's dipping approval ratings, Thompson plays a talk show host who talks to two Obama supporters (Pharoah and Washington) to try and determine what it would take for them to withdraw their support.
    Miss Universe: Things don't go according to plan this year at the Miss Universe pageant, which has recently expanded its criteria to include contestants from less-developed countries like Uganda and Moldova.
    Fall Carnival: Attention teachers and students: Principal Frye is back! Pharoah resurrects his exasperated schoolmaster, while Washington plays a teacher who recently flunked all of her students - and is now participating in the "dunk tank" at the school's fall carnival.
    Do you think Washington did a good job as host? What was your favorite sketch?
    View original SNL Addresses Diversity Problem with Kerry Washington as Host at TVGuide.com
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