The Oscars has always been an overwhelmingly obnoxious event. While the Golden Globes has booze to make things interesting and the Emmys has the inferiority complexes of television actors to keep it honest, the Academy Awards is so steeped in its own importance that it could probably make its own fancy-ass tea (it tastes of ego and the tears of a bitter Leonardo DiCaprio). But heck, even the most elegant of circle jerks can be fun sometimes (trust me, I once had a sex dream about Larry Hagman, Elaine Paige and Bob Hope), which leaves last night's spectacular dud of a telecast with no excuse. Seriously, what a pile of garbage.
It started out promising enough. Host Ellen DeGeneres came on stage unintentionally dressed as a member of One Direction and delivered a monologue that, while not laugh out loud funny, was edgy enough to maybe kid us into thinking that she was taking a page from the Golden Globes and going a little darker with her material, but two hours of Samsung-sponsored selfie jokes later (and still with hours of the show left to go), we realized how false our hopes were. It was a night of few surprises and risks and — apart from the heartwarming win by Lupita Nyong'o — a big ol' waste of time that I would have gladly turned off in favor of watching clips of blackhead extractions on YouTube. That said, I kept watching because I was
required to by work so excited to see who the winners were from this years AMAZING batch of films. Also, I wanted to loudly heckle the real life Philomena.
Hate-watching can be the greatest, but unfortunately, this year's Academy Awards was more boring than loathsome. Instead of "We Saw Your Boobs," we got a bunch of jokes about Jonah Hill's dick, which — I'm sorry — HE DIDN'T EVEN REALLY SHOW IN WOLF OF WALL STREET. It was a prosthetic so let's stop pretending that he gave the Citizen Kane of cock performances already. (That award goes to walking cock Matthew McConaughey. BOOM. NAILED IT.)
If you noticed early in that no one seemed to be getting played off stage when their speeches ran over, that's because NO ONE got played off stage when their speeches ran over. This year, they let winners go on and on for as long as they like. Sure, we all like to complain about how mean the orchestra conductor is when he or she starts playing off the winner of Best Sound Editing before he can even thank his own mother, but did we ever stop to consider what life would be like when he or she didn't do that? It's horrible! It also turns out that if you give Jared Leto can award and a microphone, he will talk forever. On a related note: plugging 30 Seconds to Mars during your Oscars speech should be a capital offense.
Ellen repeatedly joked about the show running on for what felt like eternity, but the self awareness didn't make enduring it any easier. It's like you joking about how much it sucks to get punched in the face WHILE punching me in the face. Or about how hard it is to listen to Bono WHILE making me listen to Bono. WHICH THE OSCARS DID, BY THE WAY. (On a softer note: Bono's hand gestures while performing really are like that of a beautiful crane.)
And then there was the 1,200 minute pizza bit, in which Ellen ordered pizza for the two front, most glamorous rows of the audience, collected hundreds of dollars worth of tips for the delivery man, then — according to The Daily Mail, anyway — never gave it to him. That said, I fully endorse this joke because I will never get tired of watching actresses pretend to eat food.
For the most part, everyone expected to win came away winners. The musical performances were all boring albeit pretty and, honestly, I don't know if I can forgive Pink for performing outside of a trapeze ever again. (Frankly, I think she's gotten lazy.) Jim Carrey has become the new Robin Williams of cringe-worthy presenters, the Academy's hero segment (lol) had next to no women in it and hardly anyone seemed able read the teleprompter (not even Ellen) and yet they all refused to wear glasses! OH, and then Matthew McConaughey gave the worst speech of all time:
Did this dude McConaughey just get onstage & say he's his own hero and never once mention people with AIDS?
— Anil Dash (@anildash) March 3, 2014
What you'll notice is not on my list of complaints: John Travolta — in his formal wig — pronouncing Idina Menzel's name as "Adele Dazeem." Because that was the best thing to happen all goddamn night and I will never stop laughing at it.
What would have made it better? I don't know — funnier jokes? If the theater caught fire? More involvement from Jimmy Kimmel? (JKJKJKJK) Anyway, fuck this ridiculous display of wealth and excess. BTW: Who do you think was best dressed? I liked Lupita and Anne Hathaway!
(Side note: I will be facilitating my own alternative ceremony next year. It will be hosted by a death mask and the only film nominated will be Step Up 2: The Streets. All are welcome.)
Image via Getty.