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David Harbour delivers the monologue on Saturday Night Live on Oct. 12, 2019.
Will Heath—NBC—NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

After watching this new “Grouch” parody, you probably won’t be asking anyone how to get to Sesame Street.

In a new Saturday Night Live sketch, the classic children’s TV neighborhood has become a haven of crime and corruption with pimps and drug users on every corner. And at the center of it all is a grim Oscar the Grouch, played by Stranger Things’ actor David Harbour.

Harbour’s gritty antihero garbage man is intended to be a parody of the new movie Joker, which stars Joaquin Phoenix as a failed comedian who eventually becomes Batman’s arch-nemesis. The movie portrays the Joker as a lonely man, who lives with his mother and faces constant disappointment, violence and isolation — pushing him into a life of crime.

SNL‘s Oscar the Grouch, also appears to be beaten down by life in the same way as Phoenix’s Joker.

“If everyone calls you trash, everyone treats like you like trash, why don’t you just become trash?” Harbour’s Oscar says as he is shown descending into a trash can.

The rest of the Sesame Street cast are struggling, too. Cookie Monster is shown begging on the street with a sign that says “Need money for cookies,” while Elmo is getting arrested, telling cops, “Elmo innocent, Elmo didn’t sell no crack.”

Watch SNL’s skit here:

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Write to Sanya Mansoor at

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