Mr. Robinson is the main star of Mister Robinson's Neighborhood, which was a parody of the children's show Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, a PBS staple where new information about the world was presented by Fred Rogers in a quiet, methodical, loving, and highly elocuted manner.

History[edit | edit source]

In the sketch, Eddie Murphy's character "Mister Robinson" speaks in a similarly stilted manner, but lives in a considerably grittier venue.

Mr. Robinson has to contend with Mr. Landlord (portrayed by Tim Kazurinsky) whose hunting him down for rent while occasionally giving him eviction notices. In addition the police after him for a number of petty crimes like selling stolen stuff, stealing groceries from an old lady, and defrauding children of toy money during the holiday season. Most episodes have Mr. Robinson exiting through the fire escape to avoid certain people. He always closes out the episode by singing a parody of Mister Rogers' song "Tomorrow."

Rogers took no offense to the parody, finding it amusing and affectionate; he even took the opportunity of a promotional appearance on NBC to seek out Murphy in his SNL dressing room and tell him such.

Incidentally, the first installment of "Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood" where Mr. Robinson gets a chemistry set from a man named Mr. Speedy (portrayed by Gilbert Gottfried), was overshadowed by the "Who Shot Charles Rocket" recurring gag that ran through the episode and the controversy over Rocket saying, "I'd like to know who the f*ck did it," during the goodnights. The book, "Saturday Night Live: The First 20 Years" has a still shot from the first "Mister Robinson's Neighborhood" episode of Eddie Murphy as Mr. Robinson pointing to a sign that reads "Bitch." The character was impersonated by Ed Koch on the five-host episode, using the same set.

In 2019, Mr. Robinson resurfaces where his neighborhood has gone through gentrification where the white people improved his neighborhood and most of his black neighbors relocated to Atlanta. In addition, he's still living in his apartment where he called "squatter's rights." His new neighbors are Damian and Mika (portrayed by Mikey Day and Heidi Gardner) who live in Apartment 7F where Mr. Robinson's friend Frankie used to cook crack.

Video[edit | edit source]



The very first Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood sketch, from the February 21, 1981 episode. This is the only iteration to feature Gilbert Gottfried as "Mr. Speedy."

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