22. Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood: X-Mas
Original Airdate: December 15th, 1984
In some ways, Mr. Robinson was a crude stereotype (a black version of Mr. Rogers who – surprise – lives in the ghetto and leads a life of crime) and in other ways, it was savvy, razor-sharp social satire (jokes about white flight, Reaganomics, racist cabbies abounded). But the real draw was the absolute glee with which Eddie Murphy threw himself into the role, – even more than he did with every role. In the Christmas installment, Mr. Robinson explains his hustle to the children while wearing a Santa suit and a shit-eating grin: "With this little operation, I figure I'll be taking on about $300, 400 a day. Oh, why oh why, must Christmas come but once a year?" Rising SNL star (and occasional Eddie Murphy impersonator) Jay Pharoah always mentions how the Mr. Robinson sketches were a formative influence.