'SNL': Eddie Murphy's 'Mister Robinson's Neighborhood' Gets Gentrified in New Sketch

As expected, Eddie Murphy revived his classic Mister Rogers' Neighborhood parody "Mister Robinson's Neighborhood" on Saturday Night Live this weekend. This time, Mister Robinson taught his viewers about "gentrification," reflecting how cities have changed since the early 1980s, when Murphy last played the character. This was the first time Murphy played Mister Robinson since his last hosting gig in December 1984.

After singing an updated version of his take on "Won't You Be My Neighbor," Mister Robinson taught his viewers about "Squatter's Rights," which is like "finder's keepers, but for other people's houses."

Before Mister Robinson could finish the lesson though, he was interrupted by a younger couple (Heidi Gardner and Mickey Day) who paid "$1.2 million for an apartment where Mister Robinson's friend Frankie used to cook crack." The couple asked Mister Robinson about a big television they just ordered.

"Don't worry boys and girls, Mister Robinson knows just what to say in situations like this," Mister Robinson told the camera. Then, turning to the couple, he yelled, "Oh, you think I stole your TV because I'm black!"

The couple insisted they would never do that.

"It always works, boys and girls," Mister Robinson winked.

After slamming the door on the couple, Mister Robinson told his audience there was a special word for people like them. He then turned on their giant TV and it read, "RACIST."

"They weren't being good neighbors at all," he said.

The next visitor was Patrick (Chris Redd), who told Mister Robinson he did a DNA test that proves he is Patrick's father. Thanks to 23 and Me, there are now 23 people who claim Mister Robinson is their father, the character claimed.

"That's my cue, boys and girls," Mister Robinson said as he walked towards his window. "I gotta go tell the police there's a strange black man banging on my door. But until we meet again... Tomorrow, tomorrow, I'll come back home tomorrow when my kid's not here! Goodbye boys and girls!"

"Mister Robinson's Neighborhood" was one of Murphy's frequent sketches during his four-year tenure at SNL in the early 1980s. In October, Murphy teased bringing back some of his classic characters for tonight's hosting gig.


"I'm looking forward to going back and doing that stuff. I hope it's funny," Murphy said. "SNL is such a big part of who I am, and you don't want to go back after 35 years and the show is like, 'ah, it was alright.'"

Photo credit: NBC