Americans Seem ‘Over” the Oscars

In one of the best marketing schemes since De Beers convinced us to buy engagement and wedding rings, Hollywood has enjoyed a run as the “be all and end all” of film.  With that, the Oscars have been seen as the authority on which films are the absolute best.

Sure, it was deserved when the industry was born. However, it has been slowly but surely leaving their grasp. Viewership of the Oscars – Hollywood’s tribute to itself – was at an 8 year low this time last year.

Jimmy Kimmel should provide a good boost to viewership because he is just that good.  But, politics will likely keep many of the casual fans away.  A poll running on Show of Hands (a great app that allows folks all over to vote in various polls) makes it clear that not a lot of people intend to watch this time around.

I’ve been using the app for a couple years and never have I seen such a unanimous poll. Typically the map is a checkerboard of states in disagreement. Heck, even California is planning to tune out tonight.

I think the fact that La La Land is nominated for so many little golden men, is clearly an attempt to use the awards as propaganda for the importance of the industry and the Oscars as the de facto royalty. Yes, the hype around the film began with the other award shows, but they all live in a cocoon and recycle the same opinions.

If you do watch, here is what you can expect:

  • Jimmy Kimmel being very funny and making political jabs
  • Winners and presenters using the platform to make a statement *
  • People of color winning a lot more after the Oscars received criticism (more politics) **
  • A long boring show interspersed with cute things and shocking things
  • President Trump tweeting disapproval
  • Hacksaw Ridge being robbed ***
  • The films with the right message rewarded with awards

[*] There is no such thing as bad press, right?  Expect these celebrities to fight it out for the most retweeted, quoted and written-about sound bites.

[**] Yes, this is long overdue just as quality roles to non-white actors is long overdue, but the fact that someone raises a stink and then suddenly, what is considered to be the best of the industry changes overnight is evidence that these awards have become more political.

[***] It should be Best Picture and possibly Best Director but won’t because the politics nor people involved are in favor among voters.

by Chris Doelle

Show of Hands iPad