Adele is facing backlash from angry Saturday Night Live fans after performing in a sketch mocking tourism in Africa, which one viewer described as being 'tone deaf'.
In general, the singer was massively praised for her turn at presenting the famous American comedy show – that launched her to stardom in the States. But there was one sketch about white, middle-aged divorcees traveling to Africa for sex, which many viewers found quite tasteless.
In the skit, Adele and Kate McKinnon pretended to be the faces of an African Tourist Board ad encouraging women to visit the continent for its X-rated activities rather than its stunning scenery.
Speaking to camera in front of a beautiful beach, they started: “Sun, breeze, oceans, mountains, in beautiful Africa.”
But, as Kate added, “witness the wonder, the escape, the story,’ a shirtless black man walked across the screen arm in arm with an older white woman.
Continuing with the innuendos, Adele went on, “The sandy beaches. The massive bamboo,” and the Hello hitmaker struggled to stifle her laughs the longer the sketch went on.
When a third “divorcee”, Heidi Gardner, came onstage with Adele and Kate, Adele sniggered as she said, “I found a deep, deep connection”.
But she burst out laughing when Heidi said, “You can feel it in your stomach.”
While many did enjoy the sketch, many of Adele’s fans were disappointed the singer – who was recently criticised for cultural appropriation when she shared a picture of herself wearing Bantu knots for Notting Hill Carnival weekend – agreed to take part in it.
Taking to Twitter, one viewer wrote, ‘Adele, the woman dating black men and wearing Bantu knots, decided to be ok joining in on a skit about divorced white women going to Africa to fetishize black men?’
Another vented, ‘The SNL Africa skit is not funny, at all. Even if we did not consider the current state of Africa right now (although how could you not), the skit perpetuates the fetishisation of Black men by White women. It was deeply distasteful. Nobody cares Adele is from Tottenham.’
And a third wrote, ‘Tone deaf SNL! Can we please stop fetishising black men and women?!’
Some viewers did find Adele’s sketch funny, though, with one writing, ‘I’m proudly from a country in Africa & I’m not offended at all. I enjoyed SNL’s use of humor to shed a light on sex-tourism and White/Western Women getting away with sexually exploiting Black Men & Boys. It’s funny, because it‘s true. Adele breaking made it extra entertaining.’
Another agreed: ‘Grammy and Oscar winning singer Adele breaking character and bursting into laughter live on SNL is one of the funniest things you’d ever see.’
A third simply added: “Adele is a fantastic SNL host.”