Blogging the Oscars - 2013 Edition
Seth MacFarlane’s first joke of the night? "The quest to make Tommy Lee Jones begins now." Jones did laugh at the wisecrack, but was it out of embarrassment for being the butt of such a lame gag?
Aw, but let’s give the guy a break. He’s handsome; he’s youthful; he’s got a broadcast-friendly voice that’s light years from Peter Griffith or evil maniac infant Stewie. He can even sing... more or less. He just needs better material than what he has to work with here. Where were the puerile laugh lines that have made "Family Guy" such a hit?
William Shatner is getting bigger and more genuine laughs with his absurd cameo as Captain Kirk, phoning in from three centuries hence to warn MacFarlane that he’s on the verge of blowing it with stuff like a musical number called "We Saw Your Boobs." Which, to be honest, is better than anything else so far -- especially when the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles appear as backup.
"Trust me," Kirk zings MacFarlane. "In 2015, you join the chorus."
With Daniel Radcliff and Joseph Gordon-Leavitt joining him for some "soft shoe" set to "High Hopes," that prognostication seems not so very far-fetched. (We can dream, can’t we?) For the moment, though, MacFarlane goes home in one skit with Sally Field. Sally Field?!?
MacFarlane is a huge trekkie, by the way. Hence Shatner dropping in on the proceedings. I have to say, it’s livened things up quite a lot...
And with that, we warp into the meat of the matter and start handing out statuettes!
Best Supporting Actor
The nominees: Alan Arkin, Robert DeNiro, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Tommy Lee Jones, and Christoph Waltz. And the Oscar goes to Christoph Waltz for "Django Unchained"! He won it for his portrayal as a Nazi in "Inglorious Basterds," too. Tarantino is the best thing that ever happened to him. Certainly better than his role in "The Green Hornet."
Why does the orchestra keep playing a bit from the score to "E.T. The Extraterrestrial"? I know MacFarlane is kind of strange but still.
Paul Rudd and some woman now here to offer some incomprehensible shtick evidently poking fun at voiceover performances for animated features. Lots of dead air. Lots of dying on the air. Rudd has the sense to cut it short with a snap.
Something called "Paperman." What, we’re actually gonna see this anywhere? Who knows, maybe as a special feature on some Pixar Blu-ray release.