Why I won’t watch the Oscars

I’ve watched every Oscars ceremony since I was a child, except the 2018 show, when I was in Paris. It was televised during the middle of the night there, but I still tried to watch, frantically flipping from channel to channel at 2 a.m. but failing to find it. So I gave up and went to bed.

This year I’ll probably be in bed before the show even starts. Why? The Academy has chosen to not broadcast the awards presentations for documentary short, animated short, live-action short, editing, makeup and hairstyling, original score, production design and sound (though they have already folded two sound categories into one). Instead, those awards will be presented before the television show starts. Snippets of the acceptance speeches will then be sandwiched into the live show. So if the Academy deems those awards unworthy of seeing live, I now deem the show itself unworthy of watching live. I’ll catch the news the next day.

Defending the decision, Academy President David Rubin said, “We must prioritize the television audience to increase viewer engagement and keep the show vital, kinetic and relevant.”

Relevant? What the fuck does that mean? He might as well have thrown in “inclusive,” as both of those terms have, sadly, turned almost totally trite in recent years.

The one part of the show I will regret not seeing is the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. Rumor has it the Academy will present it to the filmmakers of Idiocracy, for their ability to predict the future.

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