Even On ‘SNL’ David Harbour Is Trapped In The Upside Down
Chief Hopper may have escaped the Upside Down on Stranger Things, but David Harbour’s Saturday Night Live monologue can’t get away from jokes to the Netflix series. "I’m so much more than Stranger Things," Harbour insisted, listing his credits from Shakespeare in the Park to Hellboy. Nevertheless, moments later, a simple walk through the SNL studio turned into another adventure straight out of Hawkins.
The halls of the Saturday Night Live opened to reveal a portal to the Upside Down, and Harbour may have even dropped a spoiler about Hopper’s fate on Stranger Things while he was down there. When Pete Davidson (who has apparently been in the Upside Down all season, per the sketch) asked point blank whether or not Hopper was alive at the end of Stranger Things Season 3, Harbour said "yeah, no" and fumbled over his words until settling on a vague "just watch the show, you’ll find out next season" and a grin.
Harbour had just boasted about his Shakespearean acting chops, so it could be a red herring, but come on. That totally means Hopper is alive and will be in Stranger Things Season 4, right? Earlier in the week, Harbour Facetimed the Duffer Brothers on Late Night with Seth Myers to ask about Hopper’s fate — and they promised fans they were "still figuring it out." Calling your old boss on television without warning isn’t exactly advised, so this and the SNL monologue are probably a series of planned teases.
The "walk and talk" studio tour monologue is a Saturday Night Live standard, even if it’s not as popular as the song and dance monologue, the stand-up routine, or the fake audience Q&A monologue approaches. Incidentally, Lin-Manuel Miranda — who made a cameo appearance in Harbour’s episode as Julian Castro — took the studio tour monologue approach when he hosted in 2016. Technically, Harbour got what he wanted… just with a bunch of Stranger Things jokes in there as well.
The rest of the monologue was peppered with references to the Netflix hit. First, Harbour found Aidy Bryant trapped in SNL‘s version of the Upside Down, wrapped up in creepy vines like the dearly departed Barb from Season 1. Harbour promised not to forget about her (and repeatedly called her "Barb") which basically means Bryant was doomed. Then, Beck Bennett was attacked by a Demogorgon in the middle of a long and boring story about his comedy career. Meanwhile, in the alternate universe, Lorne Michaels is an NBC page and Kenan Thompson runs SNL.
At least Harbour didn’t seem that upset about his monologue taking the Stranger Things turn. That may also be an indication that he hasn’t truly left the series. Even though he expressed an interest in showing off his skills beyond the one beloved character, he still went along with it and did his best to "rescue" the SNL cast from the horrors of Stranger Things. Sure seems like he’s not keen to say goodbye to Chief Hopper any time soon, don’t you think?
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