Saturday Night Live May Finally Hire Another Black Person

jaypharoah_225.jpgIf you're keeping score at home -- and you probably are -- it has been seven years since Saturday Night Live hired a new African American cast member, an unhappy distinction that proved to be quite the hindrance two years ago when Keenan Thompson wasn't up for the task of impersonating Barack Obama. As such, this may be good news for everyone (except maybe the soon-to-be former Obama impersonator, Fred Armisen): SNL may have found another black guy!

Comic's Comic blogger Sean McCarthy -- who previously revealed that Vanessa Bayer, Paul Brittain and Taran Killam were likely to join the cast for the upcoming season -- claims that 22-year-old comedian Jay Pharoah is in talks to be added to the cast as well. Pharoah flew to New York twice in August to test with Lorne Michaels and, apparently, the meetings went fairly well.

Great! But, is he funny? Well, his impressions certainly are. Here's his Obama, which, while not as good as Donald Glover's, is a marked improvement over Armisen's:

Other Pharoah impersonations include Jay-Z, Eddie Murphy, Denzel Washington and Will Smith, the latter two of which you can watch below. (NSFW, unless you're Mel Gibson.)

· More 'Saturday Night Live' news? 'SNL' eyes a fourth new hire to the featured cast! Meet Jay Pharoah [The Comic's Comic]


  • The Winchester says:

    Why didn't they just hire the other guy from Good Burger?
    What's up with that?

  • Seeing as how the majority of the cast have been on for 7-8 seasons, the show needs to bring in new talent that can take over impression-duty. The show felt SO stale last season, and it's because the core group hasn't left yet. Back in the day, it used to be the norm for the actors to leave after 4-6 seasons - but lately they stay forever (or get fired). I've been a life-long watcher, but I just couldn't take it anymore halfway through last season.

  • metroville says:

    The lingering strains of my confidence in my one-line-only Denzel Washington impression ("I'm-a find out the truth, I guarantee you that," from the Courage Under Fire trailer) have been crushed.

  • snarkymark says:

    I mean, not only are these three excellent impressions, they are funny as well. That advances SNL miles beyond where it was this season.

  • I agree. If he does get cast, it definitely feels like he'll become the best part of the show before the end of the season.

  • truthiness says:

    Fred Armisen is just as right for the part of Obama as this guy is. Obama's only half black, and to the horror of so many racist (yes, black people can be racist too) his other half is white.

  • akachip says:

    And to your surprise, Obama identifies as a black man. I am mixed race as well and consider myself a black woman, always have. Nothing racist there, just know who I am.

  • Steve Frazier says:

    If for nothing else, his 10 seconds of Eddie Murphy won me over

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