Saturday Night Live accused of plagiarising controversial 'draw Muhammad' sketch

This Hour Has 22 Minutes aired a very similar 'joke' earlier this year

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The Independent Culture

Saturday Night Live has taken serious heat for airing a controversial sketch which asked comedians to draw the prophet Muhammad.

Entitled Picture Perfect, the skit saw host Reese Witherspoon, SNL regular Bobby Moynihan and Kenan & Kel’s Kenan Thompson participating in a spoof game show similar to Pictionary.

Both Moynihan and Thompson were asked to draw “The Prophet Muhammed,” in an attemt to make light of the recent shootings in Texas where two gunmen opened fire on attendants of a “draw Muhammad” art contest.

The sketch drew both praise and criticism from viewers, with some calling it "edgy" while others deeming it "blasphemous" and needlessly provacative.

SNL regular Bobby Moynihan is asked to draw 'The Prphet Muhammad' as part of the Picture Perfect sketch

One criticism, void of the subject matter, pointed out by viewers has been how very, very similar the sketch is to one aired on comedy show This Hour Has 22 Minutes earlier this year.

In this version, named Win, Lose or Draw, Mark Critch is a reluctant contestant given the word “Muhammad” to draw. He refuses to do so even though, much like in the SNL sketch, there’s a million dollars at stake.

The similarities don’t end there; the comedians partner, Susan Kent, manages to hastily guess Muhammed correctly and Critch's panic-talk – "Am I allowed to pass?" – is almost exactly the same as what was said on SNL.


Luckily, the 22 Minute’s comedians didn’t seem to mind too much, with Shaun Majumder, who plays the host of the spoof game show, Tweeting slightly passive/aggressively  “Wow if only we could steal some of their budget”, at a fan who had noticed the similarities.

The comedian went on to write “I think both pieces are important satirical comedy with two different audiences.” No hard feelings then…