Stranger Things’ David Harbour hosted this week’s episode of Saturday Night Live. Like most SNL hosts, he had a movie to promote, and like most movies, his was a dark, gritty reimagining of a well-established, low-financial-risk intellectual property. Here’s the trailer:
Adult versions of Sesame Street have been a comedy staple for as long as there’s been a Sesame Street, and there’s not all that much new about making Count von Count a drug fiend or Prairie Dawn a sex worker. The fun here is how cleverly and painstakingly the show has been fitted to the Joker template, from casting Susan Robinson as Oscar’s social worker to designing an appropriately early-1980s all-lower-case logo for the “sesame county sanitation department.” And if you didn’t recognize it until Harbour started singing along, do not miss the perfectly executed lush, minor-key string arrangement of “Can You Tell Me How to Get to Sesame Street,” which is a vicious satire of Hollywood bombast all by itself. And then there’s Harbour’s performance, which is perfectly balanced between poking fun at Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker and being weird and funny in its own right. Yes, there’s a gif:
Chills. This is the Oscar the Grouch movie we’ve all been dreaming of, ever since we decided to entertain ourselves exclusively with adult versions of children’s entertainment!