Saturday Night Live He has a masterful talent for making headlines for any reason other than producing good graphics, and the Miles Teller-led premiere last weekend was no exception. This time, the problem stems from a skit playing on the lovable Charmin bears, blue toilet paper mascots known for their passion for wiping. In the sketch, Miles Teller plays a young Charmaine who nervously reveals to his family (Kenan Thompson, Heidi Gardner, and Bunky Johnson) that he doesn’t want to attend toilet paper college.
Admittedly, the Charmin Bears were a pretty softball skit that still managed to generate some controversy for two main reasons. The first is the Charmin toilet paper ad which, per diverse, was broadcast right next to the infographic in the show’s live Peacock Show. The unconscious messages sparked a conversation about advertisers’ access to SNL content (although NBC maintains that the selection was “coincidence”).
In addition to the advertisements, the series has also been criticized for apparently elevating concepts significantly from an animation drawn last summer by YouTube creator Joel Haver. The sitcom, “Toilet Paper Bears,” also follows the Charmaine family with a technician’s son trying to quit the family business. Although Havre describes the similarities between the two parts as “extremely worrisome,” he also considers them a case of “parallel thinking.”
“When it comes to the Charmaine Bears thing, there’s a lot of coincidences that have to line up to make it really a coincidence, but I don’t think they were malicious,” Haver says. “It was either a subconscious borrowing from someone from their writers who saw my video, or it was a wild coincidence.”
However, Haver also allows that if he was in a different position as a creator, he might be more inclined to take on the series’ task to steal his ideas.
“If I’m still a leaner creator, which I’ve been for a long time, I might see him rub me the wrong way, and I’m more likely to believe they actually stole it,” he says. “I must realize that I am in a position not to be bothered by it.”
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