Given the feeling of dread coming into this year's telecast, I have to say the show went way better than I expected (yay for low expectations?) Here are the good, the bad, and the mediocre:
Second best bit from the opening monologue: Sally Field taking off with Seth.
Best joke on winners who talk too much: Play 'em off with Jaws!
Best speech: Daniel Day-Lewis
Best upset: Ang Lee!
Best musical number: Shirley Bassey upstaged everyone (J. Hudson went full glass-shattering impact - not pleasant)
Best J. Law moment:
Worst showcase for a movie: Les Miserables cast singing in their fabulous get-up. Somebody give these poor folks more diamonds for their fur!
Worst Catherine Zeta-Jones impersonation: did she lip sync or what?
Worst upset: Lincoln won for Best Production / Art Direction. You supposed they reinvented the wheel for this film?
Worst Oscar math: Lincoln led all nominations, lost to a movie that won only 3 categories total and without a Best Director nom, and then went home with only two statuettes - a production win, and Daniel Day-Lewis.
Second worst Oscar math: TIE? Zero Dark Thirty couldn't even win one full category (Sound editing).
Most obvious sign of Globes envy: Michelle Obama handed out the last award, via a screen. How was that better than Clinton showing up in person at the Globes?
Presenting snoozefest: they should fire the writer for the presenters. And clone Will Ferrell & Kristen Wiig to present all the awards.
• Quvenzhané Wallis showing her guns during the Best Actress presentation was adorable.
• Daniel Day-Lewis coming in at the last moment to give us one good and funny speech.
• Barbara Streisand singing at the tail-end of the In Memoriam section.
• Shirley Bassey belting out the greatest Bond song of them all.
• Michael Haneke’s complete inability to pronounce “thank you” and still saying it over and over again.
• A tie for Best Sound Editing! First time since 1994!
• The winners, on the whole, were deserving. It also feels appropriate that they spread the wealth since no one film really deserved to sweep.
• Seth MacFarlane. But maybe not so much him as the writing/humour-level being set at 14-year-old boys. I expected it, but I was still disappointed that he and the writers couldn’t rise to the occasion to come up with something better than boob jokes. Lazy.
• The show was overlong, sluggish and sloppy. The song and dance performances felt like they were a few weeks of practice away from showtime, and the whole theme of music got old real fast.
• The speeches managed to be even worse and more mechanical than usual.
• Brave winning Animated Feature over Wreck-It Ralph. Just no.
• Ang Lee getting a freebie Best Director Oscar after the one who would’ve been the slam-dunk winner failed to get nominated. You could feel the energy in the room being all wrong when it was being presented.
• Just getting nominated was Beasts of the Southern Wild’s reward, but it’s too damn bad it didn’t win something.
• The Best Picture presentation via satellite link really takes something away. Nothing (too) wrong with having Michelle Obama present it, but she should’ve been there in the room instead.