Monday, February 27, 2012

Academy Awards Anonymous

Well, that wasn't very good, was it?

I guess that's the redundancy to end all redundancies but I really can't add or subtract anything to last night's Oscarcast, now the Velveeta of all cheesefests. I am reminded of Madeline Kahn as Lily Van Schtup in Blazing Saddles: "A wed wose. How owdinawy." This show could not have been blander if Ryan Seacrest* hosted. Instead we got ol' reliable Billy Crystal, playing safe and unfortunately sorry. Nothing worked for him. The crowd wasn't with him at all and his material just didn't jell. He's had too much time off and it showed. His Oscar stand-by material, the filmed opening putting Billy in all the nominated movies and the Oscar! Oscar! number were just clumsy. How do you parody Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close? "Hanks for the Memories." Yeesh. Playing it safe and inoffensive are not in the best spirits of comedy. But then again, Billy digging up Sammy Davis Jr. again brings out the PC crowd. "He went too far!" they whine while the other half of the dullards are saying "Sammy who?" The closest anyone got to edgy material at all was Chris Rock's line about black voice-over actors playing donkeys and zebras. "You think we get to play white people? Nah." I think the funniest parts of the telecast were Ellen Degeneres' JCP commercials.

No one embarrassed themselves too much, unless you count Emma Stone's lame bit with Ben Stiller who is looking more and more like his dad Jerry every year. They have the same kind of troglodyte body type. Cameron Diaz and Jennifer Lopez seem to be having some kind of fun that nobody else was having. Nick Nolte, who was just sitting there minding his business, not bothering anybody, did resemble a blood-engorged tick ready to pop at any second.

As for my final tally: I got 18 out of 24. Not too shabby. I said Hugo and The Artist would carry the night and I was right. I missed Meryl Streep though. She's (deservedly) nominated all the damn time. Why did they keeping treating her like Susan Lucci?

The Oscars are the long rung in the award season ladder and everyone just seems worn-out. After the Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild, Critics Choice, BAFTA, Directors Guild, Writers Guild, the Academy Awards should be the Super Bowl. Now they're just another awards show...and it shows.

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