So that was the Golden Globes 2012, then. Frankly, the experience of watching this year’s event was less one of blogging, more one of slogging.
Though everyone was wondering what wacky, insulting antics Ricky Gervais would get up to as host this year, it would appear that the Hollywood Foreign Press had actually found a way to insert a tiny poison bomb into Gervais’ leg, which they’d threatened to detonate if he strayed too far from the bounds of his cheeky chirpy, smug-for-pay persona. So we were treated to far fewer cracks at the expense of celebrities, and seemingly more at his bosses and NBC, the American network the show was on: "Tonight you get Britain's biggest comedian hosting the world's second biggest awards show on America's third biggest network. Sorry, it's fourth. For any of you don't know, the Golden Globes are just like the Oscars, but without all that esteem." And comparing the ceremonies again: "The Golden Globes are to the Oscars what Kim Kardashian is to Kate Middleton. Bit louder, bit trashier, bit drunker, and more easily bought. Allegedly. Nothing's been proved."
Johnny Depp joined him on stage for a bit about last year’s barb-target The Tourist (Depp demurred on whether he’d seen it) but it was all a little forced and chummy. There was the odd good crack hiding away among laboured remarks about Jodie Foster’s Beaver and Eddie Murphy’s Oscar huff/Norbit which, in the latter case, would have been funnier a few years ago. Aside from the Globes gags, the best joke might have been a dig at the insanely likeable Colin Firth: What you don’t know is that he’s very racist. Very. And I mean, really nasty stuff. I’ve seen him punch a little blind kitten.”
But at least Ricky seems like he’s trying once in a while. The rest of the show was largely a rote run-through of awkward banter, long thank you lists, expected wins and one or two ridiculous snubs/surprise victories. Much like any other year.
In terms of film, The Descendants was a popular winner of Best Drama, which will cement its hopes for an Oscar. And talking of the film, George Clooney nabbed Best Actor In A Drama, making his usual charming appearance. He actually spent more time talking about good pal Brad Pitt than anyone else, and if you’d never seen Alexander Payne’s film, you might assume Pitt was both in it or produced it in some way.
The Artist also did well, taking home Best Comedy/Musical, Best Actor In A Comedy Or Musical for Jean Dujardin and Best Original Score for composer Ludovic Bource. After being briefly upstaged by canine superstar Uggie, producer Thomas Langmann gave one of the more nuanced, emotional speeches of the night, referencing his Oscar winning father, Claude Berri, but ended up hearing the You’re Outta There Orchestra far quicker than, say, the rambling, unfocused Madonna. And yes, W.E. has a Golden Globe (for Best Original Song) and War Horse, for example, does not. But A Separation was a well-deserved winner and Steven Spielberg at least got something to take home, with Tintin grabbing Best Animated Film in a win over the likes of Puss In Boots and Rango.
Mark Wahlberg displayed all the wit and warmth of a teenager forced up on the school stage to read his essay aloud. That man clearly does not like awards presenting. Thank goodness, then, for comedy goddesses Tina Fey and Jane Lynch, who high-fived after a penis joke as they presented a category together. Fey also raised a chuckle by video/photo bombing Amy Poehler when her friend’s nomination for Best Actress In A TV Comedy/Musical was announced.
As for the others awards… Martin Scorsese was Best Director for Hugo and Meryl Streep got to stand on a stage and be self-deprecating for the gazillionth time after winning for The Iron Lady. Michelle Williams showed some quiet grace, thanking her daughter after winning Best Actress In A Comedy/Musical for My Week With Marilyn and Christopher Plummer was a gent about getting Best Supporting Actor for Beginners. The most seemingly genuine surprise of the night? Octavia Spencer’s teary, shocked face as she won Best Supporting Actress for The Help. Even though she’s been long talked about as an awards favourite, her reaction was something to savour.
Elsewhere in more spontaneous moments of entertainment? Streep swearing as she realises she’s forgotten her specs at the table (a pass-the-glasses line began, which ended with George Clooney trying to get David Fincher to head on stage to deliver them. He never made it). Natalie Portman walking to the wrong podium, and then dashing back to the right place. Julianne Moore gamely suffered through a broken teleprompter, ending up reading out the name of Miss Golden Globes (Andie MacDowell’s daughter, in case you were really needing to know) with an amused Rob Lowe at her side. But my nomination for oddest presenting duo of the night? Kate Beckinsale and Seth Rogen, who managed an erection gag as his first line. Well, Kate laughed. The one thing lots of talent were keen to keep driving home: Harvey Weinstein’s nickname apparently being The Punisher. Write your own Thomas Jane joke.
Sir Not Appearing At This Awards Show? Best Screenplay For A Motion Picture winner Woody Allen, who chose to eschew LA as usual.
TV-wise… It was nice to see Idris Elba get some love for Luther. And Homeland was a deserving winner of Best TV Drama (with Clare Danes getting the Actress award for Drama). Modern Family won Best TV Comedy Or Musical, Downtown Abbey kept the British end up by scooping Best Miniseries Or Motion Picture, Peter Dinklage was Best Supporting Actor and Kate Winslet added another trophy to her bulging collection by taking Best Actress In A Miniseries Or Made-For-TV Movie for Mildred Pierce.
One or two surprises cropped up, though perhaps we shouldn’t be that shocked. Regular Emmy and Globe favourite Kelsey Grammer won Best Actor In A TV Drama for his role in operatic crime saga Boss. We could have seen him scoring, though the show itself still needs a lot of work. But he was up against Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston. And while I’m on the subject: Breaking. Bad. Was. Not. Nominated. Just… Why?
Matt LeBlanc as Best Actor In A TV Comedy Or Musical was a bit of a shocker too, since Episodes is hardly the stuff of telly gold.
Laura Dern got the usual Movie Star In A TV Comedy award (sorry, Best Actress In A Comedy/Musical) for Enlightened, which has probably been seen by five more people than vote for the Globes. A bigger surprise was Jessica Lange as Best Supporting Actress for American Horror Story, though again the movie star aura holds true here too. She praised the writing on the show, which makes me personally think she was watching something else.
The telly types provided one or two fun moments: Sofia Vergara and Modern Family boss Steven Levitan shared their acceptance speech with Vergara delivering her half in Spanish and Levitan “translating” it: “Writers are so funny and sexy. Film actresses, do yourselves a favour at the parties tonight and give them your phone numbers. They may look pasty and nervous and out-of-shape but they’re the greatest lovers I’ve ever had. Seriously.”
Clare Danes’ speech for her Homeland win, in which she made a point to thank her parents after forgetting them at age 15 when picking up her first Globe for My So-Called Life was more at the heartfelt end of the scale, but worked just as well for that.
And that was about it. One thing about watching the show here from Empire’s super-secret high tech satellite base of operations deep in the heart of Los Angeles (or as I call it, “my apartment”) was having to endure the endless ads – for NBC’s shows, for Diet Pepsi and others. There are days you really do miss the good ol’ BBC…
BenTramer Posted on Monday January 16, 2012, 12:43
Either Gervais was told to tone it down this year or he just couldn't come up with anything funny (maybe he should have had help from more writers). Kim Kardashian was the most obvious target and he went for it. It was just pointless nastiness most of the time, no wit. Elton John clearly wasn't impressed during Ricky's opening monologue (or was he just scared that Gervais was going to have a go at him) The whole thing was a damp squib really.
boredbluekoala Posted on Monday January 16, 2012, 12:57
I don't know which broadcast everyone else was watching, but the one shown by 'E' in the UK was shockingly inept, it jumped directly from an advertisment to Ricky Gervais opening monologue which he had already begun, then after about 90 seconds the broadcast was interrupted by a pointless flippin commercial, which then stopped, went back to Gervais monologue, then started again, then back to Gervais, whose funny stuff was bleeped out by some dumbass, then more commercials midway through other presenters speeches, and then to really rub it in, Christopher Plummer won an award, and as he was making his way to the stage for an acceptance speech, 'E' ran another 5 minute ad break. Thanks guys, ruined the whole thing.
Next year can we have a competant broadcast like the one from last year. Which was in crisp HD not shitty super-low-def 'E' vision.
Cameron1975Williams Posted on Monday January 16, 2012, 15:26
Great, so let's get the Oscars back on the BBC then.
spacemonkey95 Posted on Monday January 16, 2012, 22:06
Sadly boredbluekoala is spot on with the description of E!'s shockingly incompetent handling of the programme. If it's on the same channel next year I won't be watching, and that's without even mentioning the numerous mistakes by NBC and the producers of the shambolic ceremony. Awful. Absolutely awful, and I'm a sucker for these shindigs.
wgfuzzydunlop1 Posted on Monday January 16, 2012, 22:36
Have to agree with the previous comments about the coverage by E! Truly inept. Other than that, highlights for me were: George Clooney nicking Brad Pitt's cane and Ricky Gervais' high-speed 'Snagglepuss' impersonation (exit, stage left) after Madonna's 'come-on'. Let's hope everyone's on the ball next year and with a bit of luck it'll be broadcast on a better channel.
loafroaster Posted on Tuesday January 17, 2012, 13:30
"Harvey Weinstein’s nickname apparently being The Punisher. Write your own Thomas Jane joke"
A people say Gervais is a lazy writer...
guysalisbury Posted on Tuesday January 17, 2012, 15:33
Someone at E! needs to get fired! Their coverage was shocking! Thanks god for Empire showing me the Gervais intro in full!