Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Kenan Thompson inexplicably accepts thankless gig hosting White House Correspondents' Dinner

Illustration for article titled Kenan Thompson inexplicably accepts thankless gig hosting White House Correspondents Dinner
Photo: Clint Spaulding (Getty Images for Bloomberg)

According to USA Today, longtime All That cast member Kenan Thompson (he’s also been on some other sketch show for a few years) has been named as the host of this year’s White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, with similarly accomplished funny person (and former WHCA host Hasan Minhaj) joining as the “featured entertainer.” The event will be held on April 25, and USA Today says there’s “no word” on whether or not Trump will attend—but seeing as how he hasn’t attended the others that have happened during his agonizing joke of a presidency, it’s safe to assume that he will not. Having two comedians is a nice step up from last year, when Ron Chernow (who is not an accomplished funny person, no offense to him) was brought in to talk about how interesting Alexander Hamilton was.

There was a time, way back in 2018 or so, when the White House Correspondents’ Association’s annual “we’re all friends with the people we report on” dinner was a big event. The WHCA has often had a surprisingly big and surprisingly political comedian come in and host the show, like when Stephen Colbert made fun of George W. Bush’s terrible presidency right to his terrible face or when Seth Meyers slammed some orange buffoon so hard that he decided to become an even more terrible president. That changed after 2018, though, when Michelle Wolf used her time on the mic to make some good jokes at the expense of Donald Trump and then-current press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders (who, in a frustratingly blatant trap, was sent in Trump’s place).

Trump and his goons decided that Wolf’s jokes about Sanders were offensive and orchestrated such a backlash that the spineless WHCA itself released a statement denouncing Wolf and her jokes (because, again, they’re friends with the people they report on), inadvertently emphasizing just how dumb and self-congratulatory the event was in the first place. Chernow hosted last year because the WHCA was scared of getting yelled at by the great god-king again, but now it’s going back to the old days so hard that there will be two comedians hosting. Of course, it’s hard not to wonder why either of them would want to do this, since the WHCA has established that it will not hesitate to throw someone under the bus if they “upset” Trump, but maybe Thompson has something really funny and clever planned? Hell, we’ll take all of this snark back if he just gets up there and does “What Up With That?” for an hour.

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