The latest episode, which saw Tesla CEO Elon Musk make his hosting debut, featured a segment titled “Gen Z Hospital” that played on the phrases and lingo, derived from AAVE (African-American Vernacular English) sayings, that have gained popularity on social media platforms including Twitter and TikTok. The sketch featured cast members including Melissa Villasenior, Kate McKinnon, Bowen Yang, Heidi Gardner, Ego Nwodim and Mikey Day.
SNL used the sketch to make fun of popular Internet phrases, but attributed the popular sayings like “bruh,” “stan,” “no cap” and “sis” to Gen Z and social media users, as opposed to the African American community and AAVE. After the sketch aired on Saturday, many Twitter users called out SNL for poking fun at AAVE.
Che, who created the sketch, on Monday responded to the backlash on Instagram.
“I’ve been reading about how my “gen z” sketch was misappropriating AAVE and I was stunned cause what the f**k is ‘AAVE’? I had to look it up. Turns out it’s an acronym for ‘African American vernacular english.’ You know, AAVE! That ol’ saying that actual black people use in conversation all the time…,” the That Damn Michael Che host wrote. “Look, the sketch bombed. I’m used to that. I meant no offense to the ‘aave’ community. I love aave. Aave to the moon!”
Saturday Night Live ratings picked up with Musk’s debut, which also featured sketches about cryptocurrency and Dogecoin, colonizing Mars and awkward post-quarantine conversations.
The “Gen Z Hospital” sketch can be viewed below.