Kenan Thompson appeared on the Today show on Monday morning to promote the upcoming animated remake of The Grinch, which hits theaters later this week, but inadvertently found himself doing some damage control. Over the weekend, Thompson’s Saturday Night Live cast-mate Pete Davidson found himself embroiled in scandal after making a joke about Texas second Congressional District candidate Dan Crenshaw, who wears an eye-patch because of an injury he sustained while serving as a Navy SEAL in Afghanistan.
“You may be surprised to hear he’s a congressional candidate from Texas, and not a hit man in a porno movie,” a giggling Davidson joked at the time. “I’m sorry I know he lost his eye in war, or whatever.”
When asked whether or not Davidson’s joke crossed the line, Thompson admitted that, “it seems it, it definitely seems it,” adding that his own father is a veteran who served the country in Vietnam. “I would personally would never necessarily go there, but it’s tough when you’re fishing for jokes.”
“When you miss the mark you’re offending people,” he continued. “You have to kind of be a little more aware, that’s my opinion.” As to whether or not Davidson “missed the mark,” Thompson gave an honest yet reasoned response:
“He definitely missed the mark. 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. You know what I mean like Pete’s a very humble dude, he’s got a big heart I don’t think he goes out to offend people. But standups are like, they’re the ones who help us laugh through the most awful things in the first place so they’re always fishing in weird places, that was an unfortunate outcome.”
Unfortunate outcome, indeed. Davidson himself has yet to comment or apologize, and the court of public opinion seems to be squarely divided on whether or not he should.