For starters, I didn’t even know there was a Korean version of Saturday Night Live — so it came as a surprise to me when folks have been bringing to my attention that SNL Korea did a parody of “Dreamgirls”…entirely in blackface. You can see the blackface disaster starting at the 45 second mark.
In America, we are trained to being sensitive (or at least try to be) about racial stereotypes and caricatures even if this does not seem to be the case in reality. However in foreign countries, they are taken as funny gestures with the folks genuinely believing that there is nothing offensive about doing things like the chinky eyes (like when the Brazil soccer team Santos did it as a sign of admiration) or in this particular case, donning blackface.
Perhaps these actors are merely displaying their fascination with black lifestyle, similar to how folks in Japan go to tanning salons to turn their skins darker? Eh, I highly doubt it. Rather, I think this is just an ugly case of sheer, stupid ignorance and perhaps a deep rooted hint of racism. While I have a feeling this is not the first time Korean sketch shows (or to be fair, comedy shows in general) have donned blackface in the name of “comedy”, I do wish to announce this:
Shame on you, SNL Korea. Shame on you.