The craze behind non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, has seemingly reached peak parody after NBC’s famed Saturday Night Live sketch comedy featured it in a skit with United States Treasury Secretary “Janet Yellen.”
In last night’s show hosted by former cast member Maya Rudolph, Yellen — portrayed by comedian Kate McKinnon — is speaking at a university economics class when a student asks her to address exactly what are non-fungible tokens through the medium of rap.
“What the hell’s an NFT? Apparently cryptocurrency. Everyone’s making so much money — can you please explain what’s an NFT?”
The sketch features an absurd list of some real and invented NFTs in the crypto space, including images of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Chuck E. Cheese and Family Guy character Peter Griffin dunking a basketball. The cast of characters mainly consists of Peter Davidson as the student portraying rapper Eminem dressed as Batman’s sidekick Robin, Chris Redd’s Morpheus from The Matrix franchise, and a hapless “man with a mop” — played by musical guest Jack Harlow — who provides the most succinct explanation of the tokens.
“Non-fungible means that it’s unique,” he rapped. “There can only be one like you and me. NFTs are insane, built on a blockchain. A digital ledger of transactions, it records information on what’s happening. Once it’s minted, you can sell it as art.”
Highlighting the sudden surge in the number of unusual artwork, animation, and other images in digital marketplaces, the comedy rap sketch may cause some in the crypto space to recall Elon Musk’s musical NFT offering this month. The billionaire and Tesla CEO posted a video clip playing a song which featured a pair of diamond hands underneath the moon with Shiba Inu dogs circling. Musk later said he didn’t “feel quite right selling” it as an NFT.
In the final seconds of the Saturday Night Live sketch, the three characters as well as “Yellen” are cut out of the still frame and pasted into a background of the Abbey Road crossing from the Beatles’ album, revealing an NFT selling for 420 Ether (ETH) — roughly $718,000 at the time.