Column: Gervais’ speech was a relief

Logan Raschke, Managing Editor

Ricky Gervais, an English stand-up comedian, hurled some hilarious burns toward every celebrity in attendance during his opening speech at the 77th annual Golden Globes. Within his clever monologue lies a powerful truth about a pompous Hollywood: Celebrities are all just virtue signaling, and to be honest, we’re pretty tired of it.

Gervais starts out his speech by saying “You’ll be pleased to know this is the last time I’m hosting these awards, so I don’t care anymore.” I can’t think of a more fitting introduction to his speech. He doesn’t care, and neither does anyone else.

On Sept. 23, 2019, The New York Times reported that the Emmys saw a 32 percent drop in ratings from the previous year. Granted, the Golden Globes’ focus is on film, not television. But to have Emmys ratings drop so low at a time when TV shows are flourishing is seriously bad.

Variety reported that the 2020 Golden Globes only saw a 2 percent drop this year, but ratings could certainly improve.

People aren’t watching awards as often anymore because they don’t care.

What the people watching these prestigious ceremonies are tired of seeing is a crowd of A-list celebrities prancing on stage to accept their awards and give agonizingly patronizing speeches about subjects they know little or nothing about. Lately, these speeches have been so politically charged that much focus gravitates toward the contention surrounding the politics than the actual meaningfulness of the awards, and it’s just getting old.

Even if we agree with your political beliefs, we hear about it all the time during our work days. We just want a break.

We’d much rather hear a legitimate acceptance speech without the virtue signaling, assumed importance and pronounced egotism. We expect to see winners being proud of their accomplishments, but we’re tired of being lectured by multi-million-dollar hypocrites.

Gervais told celebrities before ending his monologue, “So if you do win an award tonight, don’t use it as a platform to make a political speech. You’re in no position to lecture the public about anything. You know nothing about the real world. Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg.”

Gervais couldn’t have really said it better. Nobody really cares about the beliefs of these celebrities; we just want them to stick to what they’re good at … entertaining us.

At the end of the day, we only watch the Golden Globes to see who won what. From there, we can either say ‘I told you so’ to friends, or we can try to convince them that someone else should’ve won.

Gervais’ monologue was full of great humor and unapologetic commentary on elitist Hollywood and greedy corporate America, among a number of other jokes at the expense of several celebrities.

I could’ve probably written 500 more words on how amazing it felt to hear the “Apple, Amazon, Disney — if ISIS started a streaming service, you’d call your agents” joke.

All in all, Gervais’ monologue was entertaining, full of truth and just the relief we all needed.

Logan Raschke  is a junior journalism major. She can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]