The entertainment world has been buzzing with intrigue since it was announced that Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane would host the Oscars. But critics are even more ecstatic over the latest big announcement by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association: 30 Rock's Tina Fey and Parks & Recreation's Amy Poehler will co-host the Golden Globes on Jan. 13. For decades, the Golden Globes have been regarded as a lesser version of the Academy Awards (which will air its next telecast on Feb. 25). Will the enthusiasm over Fey and Poehler's hosting gig help the Golden Globes finally trump the Oscars?
The Globes just stole the Oscars' thunder: The Golden Globes have "the most perfect combination of awards show hosts that there have ever been," says Kevin Fallon at The Atlantic. Successful hosts "make an audience feel as if they are attending a dinner party thrown by best friends," and Fey and Poehler, who used to co-host SNL's Weekend Update, "have proven time and time again their natural chemistry." By comparison, MacFarlane's brand of humor, which is "snarky, crude, and often mean," runs the risk of looking tired.
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And the Academy can only blame itself: This may be "a direct shot by the Globes at the Oscars," says Matthew Belloni at The Hollywood Reporter, but the Oscars fired first. Earlier this year, the Academy announced that it would reveal this year's Oscar nominees on Jan. 10 — three days before the Golden Globes ceremony, not after the Globes, as traditionally happens. With Oscar jumping the queue, viewers might take the Globes less seriously, and presenters and honorees overlooked by the Academy might skip the Golden Globes altogether out of fear that they'll "be asked about snubs on the red carpet." If the Golden Globes are trying to steal some thunder back with Fey and Poehler, the Academy has no one to blame but itself.
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Hold on. These shows can co-exist: Fey and Poehler are an inspired choice, says Ambika Muttoo at VH1.com. But that doesn't mean the MacFarlane-hosted Oscars can't be a success, too. The real story isn't how Fey and Poehler will compare to MacFarlane; it's how they'll compare to Ricky Gervais, the controversial host of the Globes for the last three years. His edgy humor made it "hard to relax and watch the show at ease." But regardless, between Fey/Poehler at the Globes and MacFarlane at the Oscars, "we're going to be glued to awards season."
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