This is how the ‘cancel culture’ dawned on Jimmy Fallon

May 28th, 2020

Another party on Twitter has started. And it’s not the type where you go out dancing and drinking.

The #jimmyfallonisoverparty has started, and it’s not pretty.

The long-running American late-night TV show Saturday Night Live has had thousands of skits over the years, but it seems social media zeroed in on a particular skit that aired 20 years ago—when Jimmy Fallon performed a blackface skit. 

Two decades ago, SNL talk show host Jimmy Fallon was seen in a video performing a blackface skit. In the video, Fallon was impersonating fellow comedian Chris Rock. The video made the rounds on Twitter recently and its cancel culture natives barraged Fallon’s account with the blackface video.

Fallon immediately issued a public apology after the video exploded on the social media platform. 

In 2000, while on SNL, I made a terrible decision to do an impersonation of Chris Rock while in blackface.  There is no excuse for this.

I am very sorry for making this unquestionably offensive decision and thank all of you for holding me accountable.

— jimmy fallon (@jimmyfallon) May 26, 2020

In 2017, Fallon repeated the blackface skit in the Golden Globe Awards where he was called out by fellow rapper and comedian Nick Cannon.

As the name suggests, blackface is a type of theatrical make-up where a non-black performer impersonates a black person. This type of theatrical performance is considered offensive among African-Americans. Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture explained that blackface codifies whiteness “across class and geopolitical lines as its antithesis” through misrepresenting the features and culture of African Americans.

The idea of blackface stems from a long history of racism that dates back to the early-19th century where black people were stereotypically portrayed as lazy, cowardly, and hypersexual.

Other famous personalities have been judged by wearing blackfaces. This includes Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in a video of him wearing a blackface when he was in a highschool talent show during the 90s. Similar to Fallon, Trudeau took full responsibility.

POP! Creator Community/ John Zedrick Simeon

INQPOP! Stories we think you might also like: