SNL, Pedro Pascal Reimagine Mario Kart In "The Last of Us" Mash-Up

Ever wonder what Mario Kart would look like if it was given an "HBO's The Last of Us" treatment? Here's a look at SNL and Pedro Pascal's take.

Heading into this weekend's Saturday Night Live, we were treated to seeing host Pedro Pascal in a couple of The Last of Us-related promos heading into the big show (with musical guest Coldplay). So we were expecting something related to the hit HBO series, but even we have to tip our hat to what we got because we didn't see this one coming. Because in an alternate reality that was captured in a great SNL fake trailer for HBO's next "prestige" series, Pascal takes on the lead role in a post-apocalyptic take on the video game Mario Kart. Mario's mission? Transport Princess Peach through what's left of Rainbow Road. Standing in their way? Bowser, who now has full control of the kingdom. "Karting out here isn't a game. If we're going to make it, we're going to need all the help we can get," Mario reveals to Peach. That means it's time for "all your favorite wacky racers" to be "reimagined as complex, dramatic HBO characters" – and that includes Luigi, Yoshi, and Toad.

SNL, Pedro Pascal Reimagine Mario Kart In "The Last of Us" Mash-Up
Image: NBC Screencap

And don't forget that SNL returns on February 25th, with Woody Harrelson (HBO's White House Plumbers) hosting and Jack White as the musical guest. Now, here's a look at one of the best satires/take-offs this season (so far):

NBC's SNL Season 48 includes Michael Che, Mikey Day, Andrew Dismukes, Chloe Fineman, Heidi Gardner, Marcello Hernandez, James Austin Johnson, Punkie Johnson, Colin Jost, Molly Kearney, Michael Longfellow, Ego Nwodim, Sarah Sherman, Cecily Strong, Kenan Thompson, Devon Walker, and Bowen Yang. Executive produced by Michaels, SNL is directed by Liz Patrick, with alum Darrell Hammond announcing. Based out of Studio 8H in Rockefeller Center, the long-running late-night sketch comedy/music series is produced by SNL Studios in association with Universal Television and Broadway Video.

saturday night live
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE — Season 48 Cast Shot — Pictured: (top row l-r) Michael Longfellow, Sarah Sherman, Punkie Johnson, Mikey Day, Ego Nwodim, Heidi Gardner, Colin Jost, Molly Kearney, Andrew Dismukes, James Austin Johnson; (bottom row l-r) Marcello Hernandez, Michael Che, Bowen Yang, Cecily Strong, Kenan Thompson, Chloe Fineman, Devon Walker — (Photo by: Mary Ellen Matthews/NBC)

Lorne Michaels on Saturday Night Live Season 48, SNL's Future & More

Speaking with The New York Times, SNL creator Lorne Michaels addressed the casting changes, labeling the upcoming season as "a year of reinvention" that could lead to some "exhilarating" change. He also had some reassuring words for "Weekend Update" fans and teased what's in store for SNL's big 50th-anniversary celebration. Here are some of the highlights:

COVID-19 Fallout Resulted in Much Larger SNL Cast Than Usual: "The pandemic had put us in this position where no one could really leave because there were no jobs. And at the same time, if I don't add new people every year, then the show isn't the show. There have to be new people, for both our sake and also for the audience."

Michaels Believes Cast Departures are Good Things for SNL: "We got to a point where we had a lot of people, and people weren't getting enough playing time. The way the series has survived is by that level of renewal. The price of success is that people go off and do other things; their primary obligation is to their talent and to keep pushing that. And there's something so much better about the show when all that matters is the show. There's a time to say goodbye, and there's a natural time for it, but the natural time just got interfered with by the pandemic."

… Except with Colin Jost, Michael Che & "Weekend Update": "Particularly, coming into a midterm election, I just need that part ['Weekend Update' with Che & Jost] to be as solid as it is."

SNL's 50th Anniversary/Season? Think Big: "The 50th will be a big event. We'll bring everyone back from all 50 years and hosts and all of that. It will be a very emotional and very strong thing. There won't be as many plus-ones, I can tell you that much."

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Ray FlookAbout Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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