"Drunk in Love" it ain't — Beyoncé performed her pop-leaning "XO" single at tonight's BRIT Awards in London. Mostly, she stood still and sang, matching the song's energy. Really, the most exciting part of the act was the warning that ran before it: "This performance contains flashing images." Still, she sounded great and looked like a vase, so that's something.
Every year, Americans are treated to a long procession of assemblies in which Hollywood's most creative minds boldly suggest there is intrinsic entertainment value in watching people give prizes to themselves. On Sunday, we passed the first of these. And yet, for the 71st straight year, the most deserving martyrs of all—the actors pretending to be humans on our favorite reality shows—went uncanonized.
Last night, notorious film critic Armond White (dubbed The World's Most Contrarian Film Critic by Time) continued his tradition of howling, transparent public spectacle at the New York Critics Circle Awards. This time, his heckling was aimed at 12 Years a Slave director Steve McQueen. You know how Lady Gaga sings, "I live for the applause"? It's just like that, except the opposite for the troll that is White.
Oscars host Seth MacFarlane closed out the show alongside proud pipsqueak Kristin Chenoweth with an original musical number dedicated to the night's losers. Since it was dreadful (and murmured as if MacFarlane and Chenoweth knew to be embarrassed), we can do better. Here's a proper ode to the losers: the exact moment that the nominees lost (and one won) looped for eternity. (This an update to this post of the losers throughout the years that I put together last year.) This is the reason that the animated gif was invented.
For a variety of reasons, the winners in this years Oscars race have seemed clear-cut for weeks. Maybe it's because the nominations themselves this year contained few surprises or because of the heaping piles of trophies that the likes of Jennifer Lawrence and Argo have already picked up at the season's other awards shows. Maybe it's because of Nate Silver. Whatever. This year's Academy Awards have the potential to be the most boring in recent memory (and last year was really boring). We'll have to rely on host Seth MacFarlane to keep things lively. Come on, Seth! We're counting on you!
Justin Timberlake performed "Mirrors" from his upcoming 20/20 Experience album at last night's BRIT Awards in London. When that track was released after the Grammy Awards, it seemed like an energizing, skittery return to FutureSex/LoveSounds Justin. In the live context, it was just as dull as his R. Kelly-lite Grammys rendition of "Suit & Tie" and "Pusher Love Girl."
The lyrics of Jack White's "Love Interruption" go: "I want love to walk right up and bite me / Grab a hold of me and fight me." During his Grammy Awards performance with Ruby Amanfu, it sounds like one or both of them may have said "fuck" instead of "fight." But maybe they didn't.
Last night, Hollywood had its first dress rehearsal of the awards season: the Golden Globes. As with most rehearsals, a lot of shit went wrong: audio cut out, teleprompters malfunctioned, and several women grabbed the microphone to scream crazy things into it; in another era they might have been burned as witches.
The best thing about Golden Globes night is that it provides dinner to a roomful of stars who otherwise could not afford to feed themselves. The celebs sit smushed elbow-to-elbow at round dinner tables and the International Ballroom of the Beverly Hilton looks like an Olive Garden the ad sales department has rented out for its 2003 F-ad-bulous Employee Recognition Dinner. Also everyone gets wasted, which is great for .gifs.
On Nightline this week, Cynthia McFadden confronted Taylor Swift on her tendency to turn into a slack-jawed yokel when her name is inevitably called at whatever awards show she happens to find herself the belle of. This quirk has been mocked widely (full disclosure: my mocking supercut of her fly-catching turned into a bigger story and ended up being the highlight of my 2010), partially because it seems like put-on false modesty but mostly because whenever it happens, it freakishly appears that her jaw is going to fall right off her head.
The Jane Lynch-hosted 63rd Annual Emmys are underway in Los Angeles. Early in the broadcast, Ricky Gervais poked fun at his controversial turn as Golden Globes host and introduced the nominees for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy in a pre-recorded, heavily edited video. Lynch then announced the winner on Gervais' behalf, but not before playing armchair psychologist: "Poor little Ricky Gervais. Someone didn't get enough hugs from mommy and somehow it's Hollywood's fault."
Everyone was befuddled when the news dropped that instead of some familiar old-ish white man or Whoopi Goldberg, this year's Oscar hosts would be Anne Hathaway and James Franco. Well, the James Franco bit just seemed like yet another weird event in his performance art career of being weird, so sure, OK. But the Hathaway angle remained confusing. Now we see why!