If you’ve seen the recent print ads for Kelsey Grammer’s new show, Boss, you know that their overly serious nature is just begging for a comedic reappropriation. You’re welcome.
It seems like no time has passed since the last Golden Globe Awards, but the 2011 awards are upon us and airing tonight! I always get excited on award show days, what with the red carpet coverage, the celebrity musical numbers, the uncomfortable banter between wildly mismatched celebrity presenters, and of course, Jon Hamm. I imagine my dreamboat of choice will be singing, dancing, or at least playing off his Don Draper persona in hilarious ways. Make it so, Golden Globes!
Here are my predictions for how it will all play out, and here’s the full list of nominations for the curious.
Best Picture (Drama): Black Swan
Best Picture (Comedy or Musical): The Kids Are All Right
The other nominations are shitty so this is a no-brainer.
Best Actress (Drama): Natalie Portman, Black Swan
She made her feet bleed and lost a ton of weight, she deserves the accolade, and hopefully a free ham.
Best Actor (Drama): Colin Firth, The King’s Speech
I wish that Jesse Eisenberg would win because he totally transformed into Mark Zuckerberg. It was spooky. But Colin Firth was supposedly really amazing in that stuttering movie, and everyone loves period pieces. Plus I can’t imagine little young Jesse Eisenberg getting an award just yet. He still needs to prove himself.
Best Actress (Comedy): Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
I always liked her and she deserves more awards. And why is Emma Stone from Easy A even on this list? What’s next, Anna Faris in The House Bunny being nominated? Please tell me Anna Faris was not nominated for The House Bunny, because I’m too lazy to look it up and I fear a world in which it could be true.
Best Actor (Comedy): Paul Giamatti, Barney’s Version
It comes down to Paul Giamatti and Kevin Spacey, and that’s a tough call for sure, especially since Mr. Spacey has been receiving a lot of attention for his turn as Jack Abramoff in Casino Jack. But when it comes down to it, for my money, Kevin Spacey isn’t half the actor Paul Giamatti is, so this one goes to Paul.
Best Supporting Actress in any movie: Melissa Leo, The Fighter
I haven’t seen this movie and I’m still not quite sure who Melissa Leo is, but she seems to be one of those “serious” actresses, like Laura Linney or Tilda Swinton, who people like to give awards to because they add a note of credibility to the proceedings with their bemused attitude that totally takes seriously meaningless drivel like the Golden Globes.
Best Supporting Actor in any movie: Oh great, Michael Douglas is nominated
Well I guess we know how this one is going to go, even though he’s in remission and even he took his diagnosis with good humor. OK, let’s just play, if Michael Douglas was in perfect health, who would win? I say Christian Bale. But it’s a moot point because, you know, cancer. See: Michael C. Hall and Bryan Cranston.
Best Animated Movie: Toy Story 3
Best Foreign Film: I have no idea
Best Director: Christopher Nolan, Inception
Sure, David Fincher did a great job with The Social Network and all of its cornflower blue icons, but Christopher Nolan made like three interwoven virtual worlds, man. And like, folded a city in half or some shit. I don’t really remember, I was drunk as shit when I watched that movie.
Best Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, The Social Network
It’s Aaron Sorkin, and for some reason Hollywood has it bad for this guy. Don’t ask me why. I never did like The West Wing. And remember 30 Rock at the Sunset Strip or whatever, that mess was just awful. But yeah he’ll win.
Best Song and Score: Who the hell cares, get to the TV shows
Best TV Show (Drama): Mad Men
It better win, because that means more shots of Jon Hamm!
Best TV Show (Comedy): Modern Family
It’s hilarious, and it singlehandedly revived the TV sitcom format. And, even though I’m a total Gleek, I have to admit that Glee really isn’t all that good as a show. It’s the music we care about! And even that they screw up.
Best Actress (Drama): Katey Sagal, Sons of Anarchy
Peg Bundy taken seriously as a dramatic actress? Only at the Golden Globes!
Best Actor (Drama): Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Bet you thought I was going to say Jon Hamm! But since Bryan Cranston, ahem, lost to cancer before, it’s his turn now. And, you know, he’s a totally amazing actor.
Best Actress (Comedy): Toni Collette, United States of Tara
She is totally incredible in this show, and deserves every award, period. And Lea Michele? Bitch please.
Best Actor (Comedy): Steve Carell, The Office
He’s kind of heartbreaking in The Office at times, and that’s more than you can say for Alec Baldwin, who has basically one expression at all times. Sorry Alec.
Then there’s a bunch of mini-series nominations that nobody on Earth cares about.
I had been hearing off and on that MTV’s reality series 16 and Pregnant and the follow-up, Teen Mom, were interesting and addictive, but I never thought about actually sitting down and watching these series. Well, after reading a random recommendation in NY Mag while at the doctor’s office, I figured I might check them out. And yesterday, while nursing a hangover and enjoying the kind of lazy Sunday where I only put on pants to pay for my takeout (the delivery guy is old and creepy or I wouldn’t even bother with that), I decided to start at the beginning of Season 2 of Teen Mom, which finished airing in mid-October. Needless to say, I ended up watching the whole damn season, including the Dr. Drew finale special. And I loved it!
Not having seen the first season or any of 16 and Pregnant, it took me a while to catch up on the background of some of these characters, but I soon became hooked. Teen Mom follows four teenaged girls who have had babies within the last couple of years. More importantly, it shows their environments, from their almost universally awful parents to the fathers of their children to how work, school and even apartment hunts are affected by their choices. There’s Maci, the overachieving cheerleader type from Chattanooga who got knocked up by the guy she lost her virginity to, a hunky strong-but-silent type named Ryan who sort of looks like a cross between James Franco and Brody Jenner, and who didn’t stick around for long after the baby was born. She dives into relationships and thinks that every one of them will last forever, displaying that special kind of naïveté that only teens have. When she decides to move to Nashville for a brand new relationship with some guy named Kyle, you just know it’s a bad idea, but it also seems like exactly the sort of thing a teenager would do. On the plus side, Maci definitely has the best parents of any of these girls. They’re supportive, understanding, and generally just seem like nice folks, but her mom has a serious case of Alison Janney in American Beauty, with her faded beauty elegance and vacant stare. She should always be holding a martini and gazing out the window, saying “what was that dear?” softly when you didn’t say anything. I think Maci’s mom may just be my favorite character.
Then there’s Amber, a pill-popping, badly educated and, worst of all, physically abusive girl who I swear, when she showed up on screen, made me think that the show had diversified to show what women in their 30s are going through as a nice contrast. But no, she’s supposedly a “teen.” What in Jerri Blank hell? Anyway, she berates and beats the crap out of her sweet boyfriend (and sometime fiancé) Gary, who is clingy and possessive and controlling and dangerously overweight, yes, but who is still a better father than the screaming, slurring, seriously stupid and destructive creature that is Amber. It’s a wonder the kid hasn’t been taken away from her — oh wait, it kind of was. Thank F-ing god.
Then we have the star-crossed stepsiblings, Catelynn and Tyler, who had a baby and gave it up for adoption, but are still haunted by the decision and go through all sorts of guilt issues while dealing with a terrible living situation. Even though the incest implications are there (it’s weird when they talk about what their parents are going through while cuddling, and when they get voted Prom King and Queen, you have to wonder if some of the kids were snickering at the stepsibling aspect), this is still the most solid couple in the show. They’re both smart and mature, and even though Tyler goes through a jealousy phase, they seem to be generally pretty stable, especially when compared with Tyler’s in-and-out-of-jail father, the mullet-wearing Butch, and Catelynn’s emotionally and verbally abusive mother, who is a walking anti-smoking campaign.
To round out this lovely group there is Farrah, who seems at first to have it all. She’s beautiful, has rich parents, and her best friend is a hairdresser so she’s always rocking fierce hairdos. However, right off the bat we see that her seemingly together, WASPy mother has serious issues, and that just because you have rich parents doesn’t mean they give you even a penny of help. It reminds me of Warren Buffett, and how he famously refuses to give any money to his relatives except for college tuition. Anyway, she has some of the most heartbreaking moments of the season, and she’s so amazingly ignorant (not being able to write a check, falling for the oldest con in the book, and so on and so on) that I want to keep watching just to see the episode where she buys the Brooklyn Bridge. Also, what’s up with her narration? It gets a little better over the course of the season, but there’s some serious robotic foolery going on there.
Obviously, the show doesn’t paint a pretty picture of what it’s like to deal with parenthood at such a young age, but beyond the teen aspect, there are recognizable elements of life in general on display throughout. It’s amazing how many issues go on in the show that I can relate to even now, and what’s more, some of the problems these girls have bring you right back to those terrifying teenage years when you felt trapped and every problem seemed like the biggest deal in the world. I like this show because it captures teenage life in an honest and often unflattering way, but in a way that seeks not to exploit the characters or make them look ugly, but rather to show the beauty, weirdness and the pain in even the little moments. It also captures amazing moments of childhood, like when Amber’s daughter watches out the window as her father moves out, or when Catelynn and the baby she gave up make faces at each other at a picnic while everyone else is talking, or when Maci’s baby is filmed just for a moment using a Big Wheel-mounted camera. Teen or adult, parent or not, we were all kids once, and we can all relate.
We here at Liz and Laura would like to offer a hearty welcome back to MTV’s Jersey Shore! Not only does it teach us all the importance of wearing proper undergarments on the dance floor, but it shows American youngsters everywhere that you can make a good living drinking and hooking up with meatheads while pretending to sell t-shirts in New Jersey. Wait, that’s kind of true. Carry on, America’s youth!
1. Mad Men – The drama! The outfits! The superior feeling you get watching people living even unhealthier lifestyles than you!
2. The Wendy Williams Show – I can only hope I’m as fabulous as her one day, leopard skin minidresses and all.
3. Weeds – The fifth season has been extremely satisfying thus far, and I don’t even mind the presence of Alanis Morissette. Plus, that Esteban is sexy in a middle-aged gangster way.
4. The IT Crowd – This wacky British sitcom has only one flaw as far as I’m concerned, which is its distracting laugh track. Otherwise it’s totally badass.
5. Dragons’ Den – This is definitely a guilty pleasure type show, but those wacky inventions and terrible business ideas sure are entertaining to watch get shot down.
6. Monk – Whyyy? Why must it be the final season? I don’t know how I’ll get by without Tony Shalhoub to look forward to every week.