Adele And SNL Face Backlash For ‘Tone Deaf’ Africa Sex Tourism Skit

by : Cameron Frew on :
Adele And SNL Face Backlash For 'Tone Deaf' Africa Sex Tourism SkitNBC

Adele’s Saturday Night Live debut has attracted criticism for a ‘tone-deaf’ African tourism skit. 

The 32-year-old singer’s highly-anticipated stint hosting the show has been met with controversy after taking part in a sketch with series regulars Kate McKinnon and Heidi Gardner.


Titled ‘Africa Tourism’, it features the three entertainers as divorced white women promoting trips to the continent, with sexual innuendos aplenty and Black men carrying women on their shoulders in the background.

McKinnon repeatedly says the ‘the tribesmen’ are a highlight, while Adele refers to the ‘massive bamboo’ and ‘finding a deep, deep connection there’. Gardner then says, ‘You can feel it in your stomach.’

While the Someone Like You artist received praise in other areas of the episode, the skit was met with immediate backlash, with many citing its reinforcement of harmful stereotypes as well as the ongoing unrest in Nigeria with the #EndSARS movement.


Writer Shenequa Golding tweeted, ‘That Africa skit was tone def, insensitive and inappropriate. Men and women in Nigeria, Namibia, South Africa and The Democratic Republic of the Congo are fighting for their lives and to reduce the continent as sexual destination for white women is shameful.’

Ameer Hasan Loggins, a professor in California, also wrote, ‘I actually teach about the horrors of white people traveling the world and having sex with poor Black folks in the Caribbean and in Africa. #SNL just did a comedy sketch about it.’


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Another user tweeted, ‘The whole white women going to Africa for tribesmen was just gross. Half of Twitter is laughing about Adele breaking character and the other half is enraged. But really let’s focus on how inappropriate that was, not Adele laughing. SNL get your shit together.’

A fourth user wrote, ‘So I’m curious who wrote the #SNL Africa skit and how it made the cut this week. I’m all for cutting edge humor but nothing felt right about it at all.’

A fifth commented, ‘Something about #SNL choosing to do a skit about Africa, when we’ve been fighting for all of Africa this week does not sit well with me.’


Later in the show, Best Part artist H.E.R. was applauded for using her platform in aid of #EndSARS. One user wrote, ‘While that Visit Africa skit on #SNL was awkward, cringe-worthy, and frankly racist, kudos to H.E.R. for supporting and raising awareness about #EndSARS.’

Neither Adele nor SNL have commented on the backlash.

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Cameron Frew

After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BJTC-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He's now left his Scottish homelands and taken up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.

Topics: Film and TV, Adele, Africa, Saturday Night Live, TV