Ryan Gosling Returns in 'Papyrus': Sequel to Iconic 'SNL' 'Avatar' Font Skit

Gosling's hilarious obsession with font choice takes center stage.

by Nouman Rasool
Ryan Gosling Returns in 'Papyrus': Sequel to Iconic 'SNL' 'Avatar' Font Skit
© JC Olivera/Getty Images

In a stellar return to "Saturday Night Live," Ryan Gosling revived one of the most talked-about skits of the last decade — "Papyrus," a humorous exploration of graphic design choices in James Cameron’s blockbuster, "Avatar." Gosling, during his third hosting gig on SNL this past week, brought laughter and a touch of design critique back to the forefront with "Papyrus 2." The original skit, aired in 2017, had Gosling playing a man who was almost psychopathically pained by the overuse of the Papyrus font for the "Avatar" logo.

The video has gone viral, having accumulated more than 12 million views on YouTube alone, and put into focus Ryan's comedic style and timing. It humorously pointed out the weird reality that from a film that is making billions, this font has been fetched.

Papyrus Saga Continues

The sequel, which premiered online following the latest SNL episode, plunges Gosling’s character into a new spiral of disbelief and humor. While undergoing dental surgery and half-watching "Avatar: The Way of Water," he initially thinks the sequel has abandoned the notorious font.

However, his relief turns to dismay when he realizes the title still sports Papyrus — albeit merely emboldened. This revelation sets him off on a quest leading to a humorous confrontation with the font’s designer.

This ongoing joke about the font choice not only satirizes graphic design decisions but also highlights the peculiarities of Hollywood's branding strategies. The skit cleverly pokes fun at the entertainment industry’s sometimes baffling decision-making processes.

The pop culture resonance of the original "Papyrus" skit was so significant that James Cameron himself humorously addressed the controversy in a recent interview. Speaking to People magazine, Cameron revealed a playful indecision for the sequel’s logo, "It’s like, 'Are we going to keep the same font, the highest-grossing film in history, or are we going to change it?'" He eventually decided to stick with it, adding, "If Ryan gets his panties in a bunch over it, then so be it." The "Papyrus" skits not only demonstrate Gosling's comedic talent but also serve as a testament to "SNL’s" enduring ability to capture and comment on cultural oddities, making it as relevant as ever in its satirical take on pop culture.

You can catch both the hilarious sequel and the original skit online, and perhaps take a moment to muse on the curious case of font choices in big-budget films.

Ryan Gosling