This is an unoriginal opinion but Tina Fey and Amy Poehler should consider hosting more things. The duo started with Weekend Update on Saturday Night Live, aced their second consecutive year as hosts of the Golden Globes, and could replace LL Cool J in two weeks as Grammy hosts if given the correct Kangol headwear. The smartest thing that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has done in a while is book Fey and Poehler for last year’s show. Even better than that: They’re already signed on for next year’s show. And their presence, paired with some surprising winners – we’ll get to that later – led to a seven-year high in ratings.
The biggest problem with last night’s show – other than the mass-bleeping censor who started on the job last night and cut out large sections of speeches, sometimes missing the curse words altogether – was the lack of Fey and Poehler. There might have been, had the show been better executed. Once Jacqueline Bisset won and commenced her ramble that was a mixture of champagne and outright shock, the show was either going to run long, or segments had to be cut. The wrap-up music played, and was acknowledged, but winners seemed to shrug it off and talk through it. The three-hour time limit was perfectly met, but the show felt rushed near the end. But in a show of drunken speeches filled with exasperated pauses and actors not knowing to say without words written for them, where some award winners were seated so far away in the packed Beverly Hilton ballroom that they actually had to run to the stage, the monologue and its readers was the highlight of the evening.
“This is Hollywood, and if something kinda works, they’ll just keep doing it until everybody hates it,” said Fey at the beginning of their opening act. But Fey and Poehler have an act that will never grow old. It is endlessly repeatable. It’s a Weekend Update segment delivered in a bigger room with more formal attire. No musical numbers, no elaborate reels of clips into which they’ve inserted themselves, just comedy fundamentals. Nick Saban would love them. They made jokes that everyone understood and were able to lovingly made fun of celebrities while still getting to sit with the cool kids. (Though it was a spin-off of a joke from Cecily Strong and Weekend Update from not too long ago, I have never heard a joke at an award show get the laugh that Tina Fey’s George Clooney joke got last night. That joke crushed.) But it wasn’t just one-liners that were successful for Fey and Poehler, they were able to get great reaction shots of celebrities – like Tam Honks (Tom Hanks) and Martin Scorsese – and wrangled some celebrity friends to use as players in their gags – like Julia Louis-Dreyfus moving to the movie side of the room, smoking a Blu E-Cig and brushing off Reese Witherspoon’s photo request, then back to the TV side, where they only serve hot dogs.
Here’s the full monologue:
Louis-Dreyfus came prepared, and entered as the favorite to win her category for Best Actress in a TV Series – Comedy. But someone else won that award. An award show finally recognized the greatness of Amy Poehler.
When fellow-SNL alum Andy Samberg surprisingly won Best Actor in a TV Series – Comedy – for Brooklyn Nine-Nine, that was a harbinger of things to come. Brooklyn Nine-Nine is a critic favorite that has only aired 12 episodes, and was a surprising choice for Best Series. But the Golden Globes felt different this year. Modern Family and Girls were old news, and the stars of the Michael Schur comedies were in the right place at the right time. Parks and Recreation will probably never win anything, Nick Offerman is continuously not nominated and the show is on the perpetual might-get-cancelled list. Like Poehler, Samberg is the name on the marquee but is far from the best person on that show. Poehler has to compete for airtime on Parks and Rec with Offerman, Aziz Ansari, Chris Pratt and others, and though we all love her, it was thought that she would never win one of these silly statues.
But thanks to the Golden Globes, the annual three-hour award show founded by 85 foreign journalists to gain legitimacy in Hollywood, we have Tina Fey and Amy Poehler as hosts for at least three years, and Poehler finally has her award that was long overdue.