Kenanan Thompson (right) and Jay Pharoah (left), who sounds an
awful lot like Wyatt Cenac as muppet Michael Steele ("bibbles" and all)
Saturday Night Live has a talent for making satirical commentary on various social circumstances, be they modern or past. In the case of their recent short skit, "Bride of Blackenstein," there is a bit of both. Drawing inspiration from the 1973 blaxploitation horror film Blackenstein, a.k.a. Black Frankenstein, this parody takes the next step by adapting Universal's The Bride of Frankenstein as if it were a sequel of the former. Now, not having seen Blackenstein for ourselves, we're only aware of the superficial traits and obvious stereotypes of the film.
Nicki Minaj as the Bride of Blackenstein, brought to life
So perhaps it is in poor taste that Saturday Night Live chose to use a derogatory genre for a comedy sketch. Then again, by mocking these racial stereotypes it points out the problems that were evident back then and, unfortunately, are still perpetuated in the film industry today in varying degrees. But then, does "Bride of Blackenstein" only succeed in exasperating this situation? It's a looping argument, which we won't allow ourselves to be drawn into.
Regardless of what your stance may be on the short itself, "Bride of Blackenstein" brings to mind the valid controversy surrounding Black, as well as Black women, stereotypes in cinema. It is in our personal opinion that if this was Saturday Night Live's actual intention, then they made good on it.