Stranger Things star David Harbour stars as Oscar the Grouch in a Saturday Night Live parody of Joker, and the fake trailer will have you wishing the movie was real. On Saturday night, Harbour hosted the program for the first time, giving him the opportunity to appear in one of the show’s best spoofs in a long time. In the style of Joker, the faux trailer depicts a gritty and realistic version of Sesame Street.
As with how the real movie follows Arthur Fleck’s transition into the Clown Prince of Crime, the parody shows how a garbageman named Oscar becomes a grouch who lives in a trash can. You can watch the sketch featuring David Harbour in full in the YouTube video below.
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Many moments in the skit directly spoof some of the most iconic scenes from Joker, replacing the Batman villain with Harbour’s version of Oscar the Grouch. Many other fan favorites from Sesame Street also appear as humans with a much darker take on each of the characters. This includes The Count, depicted as a pill popper; Cookie Monster, who’s homeless and shown begging for cookies; and Elmo, who’s apparently getting arrested for selling crack. Needless to say, it’s perhaps the most bizarre parody of the PBS children’s show yet. Even so, it’s still not quite as disturbing as the actual Joker movie.
Directed by Todd Phillips, Joker serves as an origin story for the man who one day becomes Batman’s arch-nemesis. It follows Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck, a clown for hire and failing comedian afflicted with a dangerous mental illness. As Bruce Wayne is still a young boy and there are no elements of Batman or any other superheroes, the movie is more of a psychological thriller than your typical comic book adaptation. Its release has brought about a variety of opinions from viewers and critics, but the reception has been largely positive, and the movie is already generating lots of Oscar buzz. The portrayal of Phoenix in the title role has particularly earned universal acclaim.
At the box office, Joker has also proven itself to be a big success. After its second weekend in theaters, it has retained its spot as the No. 1 movie in theaters. As of this time, the movie has already topped $543 million in global ticket sales, and that number will only continue to rise. Its impressive opening also set the worldwide record for the biggest October opening for a movie ever, with its second weekend also setting the record for the highest-grossing second-weekend for October in the United States and Canada. Even with the controversy surrounding its release and the fear held by some that it would inspire copycats or mass shootings, people across the world are turning up to see Joker in droves, giving Warner Bros. one of their most successful DC movies yet.
Unfortunately, the Grouch video is merely a parody trailer, meaning we won’t be seeing a genuine full-length version. However, Joker is currently playing in theaters everywhere. Meanwhile, new episodes of Saturday Night Live will continue to air live on Saturday nights on NBC. The Joker parody video comes to us from Saturday Night Live on YouTube.