‘Saturday Night Live’ audiences are seriously not laughing


@buzzfeednews on Instagram

Carla Paz, Staff Writer

For the past few weeks, the internet has been captivated by the cheating scandal involving Ned Fulmer of Try Guys and Alex Herring from the Youtube series “Food Babies.” The scandal which started in late September has garnered attention from national publications because of the nature of this affair. Fulmer, who is married with two children, had an affair with Herring, an employee at his company. Because of this national attention, “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) decided to parody the situation in a skit on Oct. 8. This skit amassed a lot of criticism due to it seemingly downplaying the severity of the scandal. The scandal and skit have started a conversation online about accountability and criticism of the “wife guy” brand. 

The Try Guys are four internet comedians, Keith Habersberger, Ned Fulmer, Zach Kornfeld and Eugene Lee Yang, who originally started their careers at Buzzfeed. Their videos of the four trying different activities, such as trying drag for the first time, went viral on Youtube in 2015. This popularity sustained and in 2018, they left Buzzfeed to create their own company 2ND TRY, LLC. After their departure from Buzzfeed, they started various podcasts, tours, a documentary, television shows and hit 8 million subscribers on Youtube. The significant others of the Try Guys (Ariel Fulmer, wife of Ned, Beck Habersberger, wife of Keith, and Maggie Bustamante, fiance of Zach) have their own series called “Try Wives” as well as a podcast called “You Can Sit With Us” under the Try Guys umbrella. 

On Sept. 26, rumors started circulating on social media that Fulmer was caught in an affair with his employee Herring. The rumors started because of a Reddit post in which a Redditor found evidence of this relationship due to eyewitnesses seeing Fulmer and Herring making out at Niagara, a dive bar near New York University and attending Harry Styles’ residency show together over Labor day weekend. In this Reddit thread, the original poster also points out that Fulmer had been edited out of recent videos and that the official Try Guys’ Twitter account announced that they would be going down to one video a week until the end of October.

The next day, the Try Guys announced that Fulmer would be leaving the group as well as the company. Fulmer released a statement confirming the rumors of his affair and referred to it as “a consensual workplace relationship.” Ned’s wife, Ariel, also released a statement thanking fans who reached out to her and asking for privacy for her and her kids. On Oct. 3, the Try Guys released a video explaining the situation and how they are handling it internally at the company. 

The “SNL” skit parodied the video the Try Guys released addressing the situation. The skit decided to take a different and controversial angle, which made it seem like the remaining three Try Guys were overreacting for firing Fulmer. Kornfield, played by Mikey Day, says the most controversial line in the entire skit, “Worse, he committed the heinous act of having a consensual kiss and not telling us, his friends!” This line in particular garnered a lot of controversies because many viewers disliked the way “SNL” made it seem as though a man cheating on his wife is not a big deal.

The skit also neglects to factor in the power dynamic between Fulmer and Herring. The general consensus on social media is that “SNL” should have taken a different approach for this skit. Though many on TikTok and Twitter have expressed their disdain for the skit, it is important to note that comedy is subjective, and something that one does not find funny can be funny to someone else. Though the vast majority of social media users did not like the skit, many who don’t use social media religiously could have. 

Fulmer’s scandal is only one of many cheating scandals regarding “wife guys” in the entertainment industry. A “wife guy” is a recent term being spread through social media, used to describe a man who makes his personality revolve around his wife and how much he loves her. For example, John Mulaney was classified as a “wife guy” because of how often he spoke about his adoration for his wife during his comedy routines.

However, many of these “wife guys” such as Mulaney and Fulmer have been caught cheating on their wives. These examples have made many on social media question how real this persona is. The reality is that many of these comedians use this brand to appeal to their audience. In comedy, there is an over-saturation of men making jokes at the expense of their spouses, so many decide to flock to these comedians because they don’t rely on this misogyny in their jokes. Because of this, comedians decide to take on this brand to get this audience. With the fall of Mulaney and Fulmer, it makes the public question the credibility of these comedians.