Those of you who follow me whether on Altered Geek or on a variety of other programs on the GeekCast Radio Network know, I don’t typically care about awards shows. I have in recent years found them self serving and turned into a divisive platform for individuals that are a part of these programs to spew their viewpoint. That being said, I think there is still room for improvement. Obviously, being an opinion piece, my views are subjective and may not necessarily reflect the opinions of myself or anyone else at the GCRN.
What draws my attention?
When I’ve found a program to be interesting, it’s not the alienating rhetoric of the winners or the red carpet gossip. What truly draws my attention is the various productions and what’s been nominated. I always wonder what will make the cuts, what will be the voting and who the host will be. Most of all with the hosts, are they charismatic enough to hold a torch to the ceremony itself or are they more or less taking a gamble on new people to see if they fit with the prestige and entertainment value that should be presented.
The last time the Oscars went without an official host was back in 1989. They went host-free and it resulted in a more streamlined event. That being said, the overall decision really didn’t do much for them in either ratings or cares. I did see a lot of conversation about it, but much less than I have in the past aside from the news of Kevin Hart being booted from the hot seat.
What kind of improvements can there be?
Revisit Repeat Hosts Who Did A Great Job
In doing this, it allows the Oscars to use tried and true individuals who have managed to build up and present the Awards with prestige and care enough to be invited for a reprisal role.
- Suggestions for said hosts being:
- Billy Crystal – Hosted: 1989-1992, 1996-1997, 1999, 2003, 2012
- Steve Martin – Hosted: 2001, 2003, 2010 (Co-hosted with Alec Baldwin)
- Whoopi Goldberg – Hosted: 1993, 1995, 1998, 2001
- Ellen DeGeneres – Hosted: 2007, 2014
- Chris Rock – Hosted: 2005, 2016
- Suggestions for said hosts being:
Honestly, my first choices here would be Billy Crystal or Whoopi Goldberg (who apparently has the best chances of hosting next year’s Oscars) not only for the sheer amount of times they’ve hosted but with the fun that they brought with them to the role. These were the only shows I really found myself enjoying because they are funny, still kicking and can carry hosting duties. Besides that, why not take advantage of these comedic geniuses while we still have them. Another I’d have put on the list if he were still alive would be Robin Williams who was another great we lost too soon.
Stop the Pandering with Opinion Sessions at the Mic
Don’t get me wrong, I totally understand their thanking people and giving thoughts of encouragement and wisdom, but in recent years, winners have divided the masses with their thoughts for or against the winner’s opinion.
Not only would NOT doing these help things, but we could also actually have a relatively fun and invested piece of entertainment recognizing the nominees and not focusing on everything else. This applies to ALL of the major Awards programs though.
Recognizing Content that Everyone Is Familiar With
I say this lovingly but we’ve had quite a few award winners for programs or shorts that hardly anyone has either seen, had the opportunity to see in their areas or things that really aren’t worth it to the general viewing audience.
What should be done is recognizing ALL features in the Awards shows whether it is Superhero, Sci-Fi, Horror, Action, Adventure, Documentary, Animation, and the list goes on. A lot of the general feature films get stiffed on awards they otherwise should have won due to pandering to something little know about. I’m not advocating every blockbuster film wins awards. What I am suggesting is that blockbusters be included in the applicable categories.
Shorten the Program
When watching these programs, a lot of it is already bloated. By streamlining it even further, we should be able to include the nominees, the winners, and the Memoriam sections. I think three hours or more of an Awards show is a bit much. I’d sooner sit through a Lord of the Rings film than an Awards show. My preferred method of viewing these is in the shorts and ability to fast forward AFTER the original airing to get the information I prefer. I know I may be a minority but that’s my thoughts on it.
Restructure The Awards
This is a bit tricky. With the newly added addition of Netflix and streaming content, I think that a Streaming Edition of the Oscars or an entirely new category should be created. Yes, this alienates the movies from typical theater release but I think with the growing platforms for streaming in 2019, it might be a necessary change. Making the Oscars a Theatrical release the only playground could help it keep it’s exclusivity while a new awards program could tackle the streaming content. Again, Superhero films and Blockbusters ARE Oscar’s worthy as well and to see some win or get nominated more often based on merits I think is beneficial to the growth of the medium.
Inclusion of Variety
This can be touchy for a lot of people with the modern, progressive landscape. I’ve seen a lot of conversations whether about certain types of people not being included as much or some too many in the past couple of years. This is true, but there’s a lot of the entire Awards that selects via merit. It still stands to wonder WHO is doing the initial nominating and whether they like the films or the types of films. There are some that are just plain not represented. There’s also a lot of pandering in all the industry. Not saying there shouldn’t be included as there should be, but it should be merit, not Twitter flame wars that choose the standards.
Whether you love or hate the Oscars, or Awards programs in general, you have to admit it is nice to see a film you enjoy pop up in the nomination list and actually take home the Win. Do they need a lot more work in today’s era?
I think so but I think that an old phrase from Beast Machines comes into play here as it has in my own life and that is, “The Seeds of the Future Lie Buried in the Past.”
That being said, sound off on YOUR thoughts and opinions in the comments section below and feel free to tag me on Twitter to let me know what you think about Awards shows in general.
Very well said! Without a host, I believe the program was shorter this year. Like you I did not watch it. Great write up, you should be writing more of these!
Thanks my friend! I plan to do more now that the writer part of me is beginning to claw it’s way out. I used to write a lot in High School but have since gotten lax there. Really been enjoying it lately.