"SNL" counts down to the New Year with more white men

Hosts include Jimmy Fallon, Paul Rudd and John Goodman

By Prachi Gupta

Published November 22, 2013 7:50PM (EST)

For a minute there, it seemed like "Saturday Night Live" was listening to critics when the sketch comedy show finally acknowledged that it had a diversity problem and vowed to hire a black woman in the "near future." But now that Kerry Washington, the first black woman to host to show in about a year, has had her moment, it's back to business as usual.

"SNL" recently announced their line-up of guests for the remainder of 2013, and it's disappointingly white and male, with guest hosts Paul Rudd, John Goodman and Jimmy Fallon, and musical acts One Direction, Kings of Leon and Justin Timberlake, respectively. For those keeping score, that "adds up to 12-and-a-half white men gracing the famed stage in December. No women, no people of color — save 1D member Zayn Malik, who is half Pakistani," notes TheWrap. Rudd is returning for the third time, Goodman for the 12th, and Fallon, an "SNL" alum, returns to host for a second time.

Standing alone, a three-week run without any people of color on stage is not necessarily newsworthy, but given "SNL's" season of carefully crafted responses to its critics -- from producer Lorne Michaels appearing an awkward, self-aware sketch about the show's lack of black people, to naming Washington as a host just days after the show was called out for not hiring black women, to explicitly stating that "SNL" will bring on a black female cast member soon -- the return to status quo at the New Year is hard to ignore. It also means that there's a good chance audiences won't see any black female celebrity impressions on the comedy show until 2014, at least.

“We agree this is not an ideal situation and look forward to rectifying it in the near future," said "SNL" in a sketch earlier this month, regarding its lack of diversity. "Unless, of course, we fall in love with another white guy first.” Well, technically, "SNL" didn't fall in love with new white guys... Fallon, Rudd and Goodman just white guys the show already loves.

Prachi Gupta

Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at pgupta@salon.com.

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Black Women Comedy Diversity Jimmy Fallon John Goodman Paul Rudd Racial Diversity Snl