Joaquin Phoenix and director Todd Phillips are receiving rave reviews for their dark deconstruction of the origin story of Batman’s most iconic nemesis in “Joker”, but what would it look like if Phillips took a similar approach to delve into the genesis of another pop-culture character?
That’s the premise of a “Saturday Night Live” movie parody from this week’s episode that features host David Harbour in a twisted take on “Sesame Street” stalwart Oscar the Grouch.
In a faux movie trailer for “Grouch”, Harbour plays a Phoenix-like grump alongside gritty versions of “Sesame Street” regulars including Big Bird as a stripper (Heidi Gardner), a pill-popping Count (Beck Bennett), a crack-dealing Elmo (Melissa Villaseñor) getting arrested, and Snuffleupagus (Kenan Thompson), who is Prairie Dawn’s (Chloe Fineman) pimp.
Meanwhile, Harbour’s Oscar parodies many of Arthur Fleck’s “Joker” moments.
“If everybody calls you trash, and everyone treats you like trash,” says Harbour’s Grouch as he climbs inside a metal garbage can, “why don’t you just become trash?”
“Saturday Night Live” will be back with a new episode on Saturday, Oct. 26, when Chance the Rapper will do double duty as host and musical guest.
“SNL” airs Saturdays at 11:30 p.m. ET, 8:30 p.m. PT on Global.