Alright, Alright, Alriiiiiight…Thoughts on the 2014 Golden Globe Awards


Technical glitches and Jacqueline Bisset-bombs aside, last night’s Golden Globe Awards telecast was a standard affair: drunken speechess, witty one-liners and confusing winners. Here’s a look at what five takeaways from last night’s show. (Read the full list of winners here.)

The Golden Globes really love Brooklyn Nine-Nine. Despite mediocre ratings and an improving but hardly uniform critical consensus, the freshman Fox comedy upset Girls and Parks and Recreation for the Best Comedy Series trophy, and the show’s polarizing star Andy Samberg trumped presumptive favorite Michael J. Fox for the Best Actor in a Comedy Series prize. I like Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and each episode has been better than the last, but I don’t understand the Golden Globes’ fixation. Nonetheless, I hope that this win will serve as a profile boost for a show that could use one, commercially speaking. Coupled with Fox’s coveted post-Super Bowl slot, this show looks primed for a future of improvement. Maybe next year, it will actually deserve to be called TV’s Best Comedy Series.

The Golden Globes don’t really love 12 Years a Slave. Despite the volley of blog posts declaring the movie’s guaranteed awards season dominance, director Steve McQueen’s confrontational slavery drama seems to be struggling against the tide of more glamorous, easily digestible contenders like Dallas Buyers Club (Matthew McConaughey beats Chiwetel Ejiofor for Best Drama Actor), American Hustle (Jennifer Lawrence beats Lupita Nyong’o for Best Supporting Actress) and Gravity (Alfonso Cuaron beats McQueen for Best Director). To clarify: all three of these movies are good to great, and they deserve their accolades. At the same time, it would be nice to see 12 Years a Slave, a movie with a seriousness of purpose that American Hustle lacks, firmly positioned at the head of the pack.

The Golden Globes are the Golden Globes. They’re enamored with big movie stars like Jon Voight and Robin Wright. They’re prone to unexpected delights like wins for Amy Poehler and Elisabeth Moss, but they’re equally prone to baffling selections like Samberg and Robin Wright, who triumphed over deserving favorites Kerry Washington, Tatiana Maslany, Taylor Schilling and Julianna Margulies. Every time you get incensed about a Golden Globes “omission” or “injustice,” just remember that the people voting for these awards (the Hollywood Foreign Press Association) are a group of anonymous journalists from around the world, most of whom likely know little to nothing about film or television.

The Golden Globes are about spectacle, and they delivered this year. Why watch the Golden Globes if the awards themselves are kind of a racket? For the absurd comedy/horror show of drunken celebrities commiserating and colliding. For the unpretentious showbusiness flair. And of course, for Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who cemented their position near the top of anyone’s go-to host lists last night. From the gasp-worthy digs at George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio to inspired bits with Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Bono, this winning duo was at the top of its irreverent, inclusive game. The best part? They’re already set to return for next year’s show.

The Golden Globes are a delivery system for celebrities making fools of themselves in a state of inebriation. Jacqueline Bisset started the night off on the right foot, arousing the network censors just a tad too late with an s-bomb and delivering one rip-roaring non-sequitur after another. My favorite: “Go to hell, and don’t come back!”

Emma Thompson made a show of her alcohol consumption, but she might have been exaggerating for the sake of comedy. It worked, either way.

But the night’s best speech was a rambling tome of philosophical musings from America’s Sweetheart – no, not Jennifer Lawrence, though she was fun too, but Matthew McConaughey. In the afterglow of his big win (and possibly complemented by some illegal substances), the True Detective star coined a fantastic new catchphrase (the title of this blog post) and dared the orchestra to swell as he delivered one final piece of advice: “This film was never about dying, it was all about living, and to that I say…just keep.” It’s your world, McConaughey. We’re just living in it.

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