I heard from all kinds of folks today that the Academy Awards were pretty boring, pretty strange, questionable taste, lots of time wasted on extravaganzas.
Not the way I watched them, they weren’t.
I watched the New York Times online – their co-movie critic A. O. Scott and cultural commentator David Carr had their very own desk in the Times newsroom, homemade cookies, their own version of the Oscar statuette, lots of snacks, and props for each of the big movies.
I watched the same way last year, and this was even better. A couple of white guys sitting around talking, one old, one medium, with stovepipe hats, Lincoln beards, a remote-controlled helicopter buzzing around them whenever Zero Dark Thirty was mentioned on stage. A small stuffed tiger for Pi.
They were watching the Oscars, which we couldn’t see, but we were watching them. Occasionally we could hear small bits. The twitter Universe was responding to their questions – ‘what were the worst and best jokes?’, ‘have you changed your mind about Best Picture since the show started?’ – throughout the production.
Each had their own score sheets, keeping track of what they had predicted beforehand. They were presented with pseudo-Oscars with each correct vote – David ending with 18, and Tony 11 or 12. Much fuss over each win and loss, lots of opinions on each side, the fashion editor of the Times dropping in.
It was all way more entertaining and fun than it sounds like the Oscars were!