Oscars 2023 review: Oscars on ABC, Jimmy Kimmel hosts – Poll

Class CNo, no one was slapped at this year’s Oscars – but again, there’s something to be said for a bit of unscripted mayhem.

It’s been a weird few years for the Oscars: The 2021 ceremony was an awkward, socially distant COVID-era affair that slumped to a new low (just 10.4 million total viewers), and the ceremony last year featured an all-time shock when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock live on stage – and saw a whopping 60% increase in total viewership. It’s too early to tell how this year’s show will play out, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see it dip again, as it was a mostly safe and cryptic affair that was sorely lacking in chill moments. buzzing water.

Jimmy Kimmel, host of the 2023 OscarsThe show got off to a solid but unsurprising start, with host Jimmy Kimmel literally parachuting in after a brief Superior gun parody. Kimmel has this cold host thing after two previous stints as emcee: He used his monologue to work the room, with friendly jabs at Nicole Kidman and Steven Spielberg, and the mood in the room seemed upbeat then. that they were celebrating a box office resurgence and a host of first-time contestants. Some Kimmel jokes have drawn blood (that’s Babylon crack earned some moans), and we all knew he’d be throwing some gags on #TheSlap as well. But his Will Smith material seemed a bit flat and almost obligatory… let alone about a year old at this point. (Not his fault: Twitter already took all the best jokes that night.) His later comedy bits where he peppered the stars in attendance with inane questions were also more schticky than funny, and a dubious reference to Robert Blake landed with a thud.

The scenography was impeccable, with the Oscars stage bathed in gilding, Gatsby the magnificent-glamorous style. But the show noticeably cut corners in an effort to cut airtime, even though it lasted well over three and a half hours. (Best Picture nominees were honored with brief edits rather than individual tributes, and several winners were abruptly cut off mid-sentence.) We still had time for plenty of moving speeches, including a Ke Huy Tearful Quan, capping a remarkable career rebound by winning the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for Everything everywhere all at once. (Having Spielberg and Harrison Ford, who worked with him as a child in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doomin the room to cheer her on, it was a beautiful looping moment that only the Oscars can provide.) Jamie Lee Curtis’ supporting actress win also echoed decades of Hollywood history as she was nodding to her iconic parents, Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh. .

But the big winners of the evening were mostly predetermined – EEAAOThe Best Picture win was practically carved in stone before the night began – so any sense of suspense was conspicuously lacking. (We’ve heard versions of the winners’ speeches on every other awards show before.) Couple that with a largely bland ceremony, and I wouldn’t blame any viewers whose attention began to wander around the brand. one hour. It left me plenty of time to ponder such mysteries as: is it even fair to expect the Oscars to reach the monumental audience they once did, with hopelessly fragmented audiences and the media social events that make celebrity glimpses a daily occurrence rather than a special treat? And where can I get my own set of hot dog fingers?

This year’s Oscars were at their best when they threw a curveball at us, like John Travolta’s voice gushing with genuine emotion during the intro to the “In Memoriam” segment following the death of his Fat co-star Olivia Newton-John and the vivacious performance of Best Original Song winner “Naatu Naatu” from RRR, with dozens of dancers tearing up the stage in colorful costumes and jaw-dropping choreography. This performance may even have inspired a few viewers to watch the film on Netflix – and that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?

Alright, now it’s your turn: rate this year’s Oscars in our poll, and hit the comments below to give us your full take on the festivities.


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