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Kenan Thompson Weighs in on Pete Davidson’s Controversial ‘SNL’ Joke

Pete Davidson

Kenan Thompson on Monday said he felt his Saturday Night Live castmate Pete Davidson went too far with a recent joke on the show about a wounded veteran running for office.

Davidson received severe backlash for his joke about his “first impression” of Dan Crenshaw, a Republican candidate for Congress and a former Navy SEAL who lost an eye in an IED blast while serving in Afghanistan in 2012.

“You may be surprised to hear he’s a congressional candidate in Texas and not a hitman in a porno movie,” Davidson said on the “Weekend Update” segment of SNL this weekend. After laughter from the audience was awkward, Davidson added, “I’m sorry, I know he lost his eye in war, or whatever. Whatever.”

Thompson — the most senior member of the current SNL cast — said on NBC’s Today show on Monday morning that the one-liner was too much.

“It definitely seems [as if Davidson crossed the line],” Thomspon said. “My father’s a veteran — Vietnam — and I personally would never necessarily go there, but it’s tough when you’re fishing for jokes. That’s how stand-ups feel, like there’s no real filters out there in the world when they’re trying to go for a great joke or whatever and we try to respect that — but at the same time, when you miss the mark, you’re offending people, so you have to really be a little more aware in my opinion.”

“He definitely missed the mark,” Thompson continued. “I think he was more so commenting on the fact that the joke maybe didn’t land as hard as he wanted to as opposed to being like, ‘I don’t care about veterans.'”

Crenshaw said he tries not to be offended but that the joke was in poor taste.

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“Good rule in life: I try hard not to offend; I try harder not to be offended. That being said, I hope @nbcsnl recognizes that vets don’t deserve to see their wounds used as punchlines for bad jokes,” he tweeted on Sunday.