The Disappointing Reveal of Awards Shows

Personally, I want Ricky Gervais to host everything.  Awards shows, talk shows, hell, even telethons (send us your drug money you wankers!).  If one thing was clear about the Golden Globes last night, it was that shows like this need way more Ricky and way less stars presenting awards.

It remains one of the most unchanged formulas of all time.  Writers for these shows come up with a cute little bit for two presenters which is delivered poorly and gets zero laughs.  Combine that with ill-prepared speeches that run way too long early in the night and you get reduced time for the actually entertaining host and no time for the main category speeches at the end of the night.  It is a complete collapse from the producer and director chair.  The fix seems simple enough: if the presenter is notoriously funny/witty, give him/her the option to use 60 seconds for some material before announcing the award.  If the presenter is the majority of the Hollywood elite and off screen is shy/quiet and completely unfunny, STOP WASTING OUR TIME.  In addition, the awards that come in the first two hours should have a 20-second speech limit.  If they run past that (as they always do) let them keep talking but cut the broadcast to commercial with a musical sting and wide shot of the room.  They can yammer on and on all they want but the show will remain on time and the commercial breaks will all be fulfilled.  Gervais nailed it on the head in his bit about no one caring about the winners except for “the winner” yet no one listens.

Another unfortunate reveal of these shows is just how few of these “stars” are actually as charming/funny/witty when there is no script in front of them.  I know Amy Shumer and J-Law are making a film together but watching Lawrence try and keep up with the super-witty Shumer during their co-presentation was almost un-watchable.  Watching Maura Tierney “um” her way through her acceptance speech was annoying enough but watching the usually well-spoken and likeable Denzel Washington completely unprepared for his Cecil B. Demille award was embarrassing.  You forget your glasses it’s one thing but he had no idea what to say outside his crib notes and his award was PLANNED, not a surprise.

The night had some other excellent highlights such as Sly Stallone finally winning an award for playing Rocky Balboa after 40 years and finally able to show a large audience that he is not a mumbling idiot as perceived by many non-fans by making one of the best speeches of the night.  Jim Carrey had a funny bit before he presented (though it derailed a little) and the Ricky Gervais-Mel Gibson was the bit of the night capped off by Ricky’s voice over the end credits announcing that on behalf of he and Mel, he would like to say “Shalom.”  That great joke became a credits throwaway because Taraji P. Henson had to hand out “cookies to everyone” and feel the need to admit she was blowing way past her allotted time with another train-wreck of a speech.

It is amazing in this age of instant streaming that these awards shows have not figured out how to keep the attention of the audience and  run a shorter, more entertaining show.  It starts with the choice of host and Gervais is perfect since the Globes is always a less stuffy room than the Oscars.  If someone gets the balls to step up and trim the insane amount of fat from the broadcast, it could actually be a truly entertaining way to spend an evening.

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