Seth MacFarlane Went Crude And Highbrow As Oscar Host
Seth MacFarlane hosted the 85th Oscars, celebrating Hollywood's musical roots and the crude humor that’s made him his fortune.
MacFarlane’s opening bit that clocked in at over 15 minutes was decidedly bipolar — although there’s debate about whether that was a positive or negative. Throughout the evening the first-time host attempted to intersperse slightly perverse comedy with musical dance numbers that paid tribute to musical theater. He took jabs at a myriad of A-listers in the crowd, and went full on meta with a recurring act featuring William Shatner as his Star Trek character, Captain Kirk.
One of MacFarlane’s most negatively received bits was his pre-taped song and dance number, “I Saw Your Boobs,” in which he called out a slew of actresses and the movies in which they bared their chests. His joke about how Daniel Day-Lewis is the second most successful actor in getting into Abraham Lincoln’s head – the first being John Wilkes Booth – was deemed too soon by the hushed audience. However, it seemed as though the sock-puppet rendition of Flight proved to entertain despite a certain level of inappropriateness.
The Family Guy and Ted creator won the most praise for enlisting Hollywood elite to join him for a series of musical bits. Channing Tatum and Charlize Theron performed a graceful ballroom dance, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Daniel Radcliffe joined MacFarlane in a vaudevillian number. The show closed out with MacFarlane and Broadway veteran Kristin Chenoweth performing a rundown of the night’s events in song.
MacFarlane’s night as Oscar host won’t go down as the worst in the record books – James Franco will hold onto that honor – but it won’t go down as one of the best either. He seemed to realize that his jokes weren’t landing quite as well as he had imagined, causing him to shrink throughout the night.
MacFarlane is a funny guy, but the frat boy humor that works so well in his sitcoms doesn’t play as well at an awards show. Instead of making the creative choice to make a night of two extremes, he’d have been better off putting his comedic and musical genius mind to create a less frenetic blend.
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