Every year I nod and agree with the parades of people who argue that awards shows are tacky, embarrassing and frankly ignorant to some of the best talent in the industry. And there I was on Sunday 13th February, awake and crying at 4 am when Jennifer Lawrence was finally crowned Best Actress for ‘The Silver Linings Playbook’ (I am a massive Hunger Games fan girl). So I asked myself: what is it that makes me, and so many others, enamored by such glitzy events?
Firstly, for me, it is the cliché that these shows enable us to see talented individuals awarded for their outstanding work. To see Adele beat out One Direction for the Brit award for Best British Single thoroughly pleased me; she works hard, always appears grateful and is an artist with a genuinely outstanding voice. Admittedly, another attraction is the outfits. Seeing each celebrity’s different style splashed across a red carpet is always exciting, and the quirky selections chosen by actress Helena Bonham Carter and singer Paloma Faith kept me thoroughly entertained.
Finally, and probably most importantly, what kept me watching this year were the presenters. The anticipation of success or failure had been laid out for weeks in advance by every glossy tabloid, and this year the presenters either lived up to or tragically failed when facing these expectations. James Corden and newbie Seth McFarlane took to the stage for the BAFTAS and the Oscars, respectively. The results were uncomfortable and awkward silences, which seemed to be the main theme of the night, particularly after Corden’s quip at cutting Adele off back at the 2012 BRITS and McFarlane’s unusual, to say the least, ‘We saw your boobs’ song.
But my favourite presenter this awards season has to be Stephen Fry. The quintessentially British ‘national treasure’ presented the show smoothly, proving intelligence and comedic timing are crucial to any successful televised event. His closing speech reminded me of the entertainment of watching award shows and the joy at seeing the true talent in the film and music industry rightly rewarded.