This weekend, Elon Musk—controversy in tow—will host Saturday Night Live, with veteran actress Miley Cyrus only appearing as musical guest.
To say that Musk’s announcement as a host for the NBC sketch series’ 46th season proved immediately and consistently divisive would be an understatement, as the days leading up to the Tesla CEO-fronted episode have been rife with criticism. Many have questioned the further platforming of someone aligned with union-busting, while others have pointed out his history of downplaying the pandemic.
SNL’s co-head writer and “Weekend Update” co-anchor Michael Che, however, is “excited” about Musk’s hosting gig. During a new Breakfast Club appearance, Che was asked by Charlamagne tha God about the criticism the show has faced since announcing Musk as a host, prompting Che to explain the pushback shows people “still care” about the show.
“I don’t know, I think white people just don’t like their billionaires, for some reason,” Che said around two minutes into the video up top. “It’s weird because we love our billionaires. If Oprah or Tyler Perry was coming, we’d be all excited about it. But for whatever reason, I don’t know, I think it’s a little embarrassing when they realize how much wealth they actually have. But I, you know, it’s the richest man in the world. Of course I wanna meet him.”
Che also pointed out that Musk has appeared on other shows, though he maintained that the controversy surrounding the SNL decision proved that fans still felt an ownership over the booking choices due to the larger legacy.
“I think that’s what makes the show exciting, honestly,” Che said. “He’s been on other shows before. … I think it’s a good thing, though. I think it means people still care about the show in some way, at least, because they wouldn’t know if they didn’t care.”
Che also briefly addressed the Musktroversy during an appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers on Monday night, saying “it’s gonna be exciting” while reflecting on the show’s recent run of hosts.
“He’s the richest man in the world,” he told Meyers. “How could you not be excited for that?”
Last week, Che responded to the New York Post after the tabloid paper alleged that cast members “won’t be forced to appear” with Musk during this weekend’s episode. In a since-removed Instagram post, Che laughed off the report, jokingly suggesting such a rule should be extended to his “Weekend Update” duties with Colin Jost.