The Oscars are this Sunday, and while many are probably focusing on who will (or should) win awards, I’d like to discuss the actual Oscar show. In recent years the Academy has been revamping the show with mixed results. 2011’s ceremony with James Franco and Anne Hathaway as hosts was deemed by many as the worst Oscars ever and even Billy Crystal’s return last year met mixed reviews.
This year’s host is Seth MacFarlane, creator of the TV series Family Guy and director of the recent comedy Ted. MacFarlane is a risky choice, known for his edgy humor, but how will he do at the Oscars?
I’m actually not quite sure. I have to confess to not being a fan of Family Guy, though I do think MacFarlane is a talented comedian. And it’s not that I have anything against edgy humor (I defended Ricky Gervais’ performance at the Golden Globes). But I don’t exactly think MacFarlane is the right pick for a host. Plus he has big shoes to fill after Amy Poehler and Tina Fey’s job at the Golden Globes.
But for me, the problem with the Oscars is the incredible length. The show lasts about four hours long and isn’t very well-paced. The Academy has tried fixing this with a series of altercations, such as shortening the honorary Oscar speeches, but the real solution is the order of the awards. The four major Oscars: actor, actress, director, and picture, are all during the last half hour in hope that viewers will stick around to see them.
My suggestion is that the Oscars try to diversify the major awards. They could still keep Best Picture last but put actor, actress, and director throughout the ceremony. This would not only pace the show better but add more tension throughout the night and make it more interesting.
But what do you want from the Oscars?