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April 16, 2023

'Saturday Night Live' parodies 'Barbie' trailer with American Girl doll sketch full of dark twists

The episode, hosted by Oscar-nominated actress Ana de Armas, also featured a cold open poking fun at the quirky people of Central Park on the first warm day of the year

Entertainment Saturday Night Live
SNL barbie sketch Saturday Night Live/Youtube

During the latest SNL episode, which featured Oscar-nominated actress Ana de Armas as host with musical guest Karol G, a sketch presents a dark thriller about American Girl dolls. The parody pokes fun at the viral trailer for Greta Gerwig's "Barbie" live action film, which premieres in July.

A sketch during the latest episode of "Saturday Night Live" put a nostalgic twist on what is sure to be one of the biggest movies of the summer.

During the April 15 episode, which featured Oscar-nominated actress Ana de Armas as host with musical guest Karol G, a sketch presents a faux trailer for a dark thriller about American Girl dolls. The segment pokes fun at the success of the trailer for Greta Gerwig's "Barbie" live action film, which will be released in theaters July 21.

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In the sketch, SNL cast members Heidi Gardner, Molly Kearney, Chloe Fineman, Sarah Sherman plus host De Armas portrayed some of American Girl's Historical Characters. The line of dolls, which first launched in 1986, includes characters from various time periods, ethnicities, faiths and social classes, with their own unique struggles and stories.

The characters' hardships were put on particular display during the segment, which presented a trailer for a live-action movie about a group of dolls with "harrowing" backstories. One is an orphan in Victorian times, one's friend died of cholera, one's father is a prisoner of war, one buried her mother in the church graveyard and one is a runaway slave.

“Not all dolls live in a dream, some are bigger, younger, sadder, some dolls are American Girls,” said the faux trailer's voice-over. “Did all their family members die of old timey diseases? Absolutely.”

"That's okay," the girls halfheartedly responded after hearing about each others' traumas.

By the end of the clip, the dolls are entering the "Modern World" in a covered wagon, and have lost a few characters to "old timey" diseases along the way.

This isn't the first time SNL has referenced American Girl recently. Earlier this season, host Travis Kelce brought some dolls to enjoy lunch at an American Girl Café.

There also have already been several American Girl movies made based on the dolls' stories, including the 2004 movie "Samantha: An American Girl Holiday." In 2019, it was reported that Mattel and MGM were joining forces to develop a new live-action American Girl movie, although more details have not yet emerged on that project.

While SNL's take on a live action doll movie spelled doom and gloom, the plot of the actual "Barbie" film, which features a star-studded cast including Margot Robbie in the titular role and Ryan Gosling as Ken, has remained largely under wraps.

The trailer, which quickly amassed 19 million views since its April 4 debut, broke the internet with its cheerful pink vibe and "She's everything. He's just Ken" tagline.

SNL took to Instagram to play into a social media trend spawned from the movie's promo, in which people would edit themselves onto the "Barbie" movie poster with a quirky tagline.

Along with the American Girl sketch, another highlight of the April 15 episode was the cold open, which featured red carpet reporters interviewing the quirky characters of Central Park as they emerged for the first warm day of the year.

Other sketches centered on a high school Spanish classthe world record holder for longest fingernails, "hangxiety" after a night of drinking at a SNL cast party and the return of cast member Ego Nwodim's "Lisa from Temecula" character.

Fans who missed De Armas' episode can stream it through Peacock. The next episode of SNL airs May 6, with host Pete Davidson and musical guest Lil Uzi Vert.

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