The Weeknd performed in costume this weekend on SNL. He wore the bloody gauze and fake wounds from his recent "Blinding Lights" music videos, making for a jarring look on Saturday Night Live. It was especially unusual for the title cards.
Like all musical guests, The Weeknd was featured on title cards during the commercial breaks on SNL. However, rather than a few different photo shoots, he posed in the same red and black suit each time. He also wore a piece of bloody gauze over his nose, with dried blood around his nose, mouth and over one eye.
The Weeknd's performances went over well on Saturday night, making a huge splash on social media. On Sunday afternoon, he shared a collection of title cards on Twitter, writing: "Thank you [SNL]" with a heart emoji.
"No, thank you king," one person responded.
"King, you deserve EVERY bit of fame," added another.
"Thank YOU for the amazing performances," tweeted a third.
The Weeknd was on SNL promoting his new album, After Hours, which comes out on March 20. He has already released singles, music videos and even a short film, revealing a cohesive story and visual aesthetic permeating the whole work. The music video for "Blinding Lights" shows him getting the injuries to his face when he got into a fight with several bouncers.
For casual viewers, the look was a little jarring. Many people on social media were shocked by his appearance, thinking that the injuries were real. They wondered why he couldn't be cleaned up better before he went on live TV.
"OK... I guess I'm too old, but what's with the blood all over [The Weeknd's] face?" one person tweeted. "I'm sure it means something, but I have no clue what. That being said, he sings great live."
"[The Weeknd] need to have the #snl Team change his Bandages [and] Clean his FACE UP!" added another.0comments
"Wait, why is the Weeknd performing like he's broken his nose with other blood coming down his face?" wondered a third.
It was a grand send-off for SNL before two weeks off the air. The show will return on Saturday, March 28 on NBC, with host John Krasinski and musical guest Dua Lipa.