The Golden Globes (or what I like to think of as Oscars antipasto) have come and gone, and the major buzz has not been about the winners and losers but about Ricky Gervais’ caustic hosting turn. Viewers are divided between those who think Gervais was far too mean-spirited in his skewering of celebrities and those who found his roasting of the Hollywood elite to be a perfect comeuppance for their left-leaning hypocrisy.
There is a certain portion of the American public who disdains most of Hollywood as out of touch with the mainstream, hypocritical as they jet off to climate change protests, and just plain annoying with all their self-congratulation. My question to these naysayers is: Why in the world would you waste the better part of an evening watching the Globes if you find the award recipients so reprehensible?
Let’s face it. Most of us are intrigued by celebrity. I know this from my years in L.A. where celebrity sightings were a regular occurrence that made them no less thrilling. There’s something slightly surreal about, say, rubbing elbows with Tom Hanks in the local supermarket. We see them on our TV screen or at the movie theater one day, and there they are in the flesh the next!
The annual awards shows are filled with glamor. Some people want to see the gowns and how the women wear their hair. Some have a favorite actor or movie they want to see given its due with a glittering statue. And others, well, they tune in to see the likes of Ricky Gervais do some spot-on mockery of these larger than life figures.
I have to admit I laughed at Gervais’ quip that Once Upon a Time … In Hollywood was so long that by the time the premiere ended, Leonardo DiCaprio’s date was too old for him. And even though he verged into tasteless territory by joking about pedophilia, Gervais was a master at hitting his marks. And the Hollywood glitterati in attendance? Well, as the saying goes, there’s no such thing as bad publicity.
Say what you will about the self-importance of Hollywood stars, they still spark stars in our eyes, even those of us who love to hate them.