A Christian watchdog group is coming down on Saturday Night Live and putting pressure on advertisers in the wake of a Django Unchained spoof that aired February 16th. In the interest of telling the rest of us what we should find funny and what should offend us, the American Family Association is claiming a partial victory in their efforts to get major retailers to pull ads from the show.
An AFA press release claims that after SNL aired the skit Djesus Uncrossed, both Sears and J.C. Penney were convinced by the group and its supporters to pull their ads. The organization says both companies have pulled advertising from the show, and that Sears will not be advertising around SNL again - an assertion which might not be quite accurate.
According to the New York Times, J.C. Penney never advertised during SNL’s broadcast in the first place, and Sears did not, as the press release claims, make any promise to stop advertising during the show. Apparently, both companies have removed their ads from appearing during online streaming of the clip, but neither plans to change broadcast advertising plans for the future in response to the controversy.
The sketch, which you can watch above, spoofs the Quentin Tarantino movie in the form of a trailer, wherein Jesus, played by Christoph Waltz, has returned from the dead and is ready to take his vengeance. The AFA apparently doesn’t find it all that funny, although I’ve always thought Jesus seemed like the kind of guy who might have a sense of humor. As usual with watchdog groups like these, there seems to be much ado about not a whole lot. It’s unlikely that SNL will see any long-term advertising effects, and very likely everyone will forget about the whole thing soon. NBC has yet to comment and I suspect they won’t bother.
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