Kanye West is in the news again for disturbing things related to anti-Semitism. This time, it’s a CNN report that he has a long history of a “disturbing” interest in Adolf Hitler. And that led Jimmy Kimmel to wonder Thursday if Kanye has been a Sacha Baron Cohen practical joke all along.
The joke came during Kimmel’s monologue, just as he wrapped up some jokes about Georgia U.S. Senate candidate Herschel Walker.
“Herschel Walker really owes Kanye West the spotlight,” Kimmel said. “Kanye is back on Instagram after his account was banned for anti-Semitic posts.”
Kimmel then read from Kanye’s post.
“Ari Emmanuel,” Kimmel began, adding, “Ari Emmanuel is a very powerful agent in Hollywood, he wrote an op-ed asking others to boycott Kanye. [Kanye] wrote, ‘I lost $2 billion in one day and I’m still alive. This is love speech. i still love you God still loves you. Money is not who I am. The people are who I am.”
“Well, not the Jewish people,” Kimmel said, “but the people are what they are. Does anyone else feel like we’re going to find out that, for the last 20 years, Kanye has been a Sacha Baron Cohen character?
“CNN reported today that a business executive who worked closely with Kanye says Kanye was a big fan — a big admirer — any guesses who?” Kimmel articulated.
“Everyone says Hitler. Yes, it was Hitler. The source asked not to be named, due to a confidentiality agreement and fear of retaliation from Kanye. Well, I don’t think he has anything to worry about there. Very laid back guy,” Kimmel joked.
Kimmel pointed out the strangest (and perhaps most disturbing) element of the story — the allegation that Kanye wanted to name an album after Hitler.
“Which, that would be something. ‘I fired the new Hitler. It’s tight. I have to say it is,” Kimmel added, walking away. “It’s so crazy, it’s hard to believe it’s not a joke. You know, in the mid-2000s—I don’t know if you remember—when Nas and Jay Z were feuding, Kanye was the voice of reason. He tried to bring them together.”
Then Kimmel came up with some good puns: “He wanted to have a Nas-Z date. And maybe even a Nas-Z party.” We understand, Jimmy. Of course the audience wasn’t into it, prompting Kimmel to say “Come on now. You liked this.”
Of course there’s more, and you can watch the entire monologue above right now.