Saturday Night Live star Michael Che penned a heartfelt message on the show returning Saturday night with an episode filmed remotely. The show is not only the first in more than a month, but it is also Che's first since his grandmother died Sunday night from complications of the coronavirus. Che admitted he was skeptical at first about doing the episode, where all cast members filmed separately from their homes, but agreed to do it to help make the world feel "quasi-normal again."
"So we're doing a new SNL tonight, from home," the "Weekend Update" anchor wrote on Saturday morning. "It's obviously not gonna be what you're used to seeing from our show. But it could be fun for whoever it's fun for. It was honestly skeptical about doing it at first, but having something else to think about this week really helped the days go by for me. And also, seeing my cast mates and the staff made s— feel quasi-normal again. And if we can do the same for you with something silly and dumb, then damn it, let's give it the ol' GED try!"
In the next page of the note, Che thanked his fans for reaching out after his grandmother died. "I really appreciate it, even if I didn't answer," Che wrote. "Sorry for that, it just got a little overwhelming sometimes, and I had to look away from my phone, so I wouldn't tell."
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Che also shared more jokes about the incorrect conspiracy theory that 5G is somehow connected to the coronavirus. The comedian then shared a message to people who grew up in similar situations he faced, referencing new data that minority communities have been disproportionately affected by the outbreak. "Understand that sin some living conditions, saying home can be more dangerous than getting sick," Che wrote. "And sometimes you can't stay away from your elders, because there's literally nowhere else to go."
"Sometimes those survival instincts kick in, and it's hard to not lash out," Che wrote. "When you're out of work, and your family has to eat, s— can get dark quick. All I can say is, there's nobody stronger, and more resilient than my community. And this is one more thing we gotta do together."
The new SNL episode will air in the show's usual timeslot, 11:30 p.m. ET Saturday on NBC. No guest or musical performer has been announced, but it will feature a "Weekend Update" segment with Che and Colin Jost. The SNL team tweeted a screenshot showing all cast members participating in a Zoom meeting on Thursday.