Golden Globe Reactions (2012)

bill bodkin looks at Hollywood’s second favorite awards show …

The 2012 edition of The Golden Globes proved to be quite a boring affair as a show. Ricky Gervais was completely underused. The presenters were, for the most part, quite boring. And the show itself felt disorganized.

However, the awards themselves — the winners and losers — were the most interesting part of the night … as they should be. This year, almost every category was packed with TV shows, films or performers who not only could’ve taken a statuette home but are also at the top of their game. For instance, Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical had four highly acclaimed, multi-award-winning actresses (Kate Winslet, Jodie Foster, Charlize Theron and Michelle Williams) and one the top comedic actresses in the business (Kristen Wiig). That’s an amazingly loaded category. And it seemed every category was like this. So this year, there was a little bit of suspense, a little bit of drama when it came to the winners and losers.

This also backed up my thoughts that this is an acting year, not a movie year. In year’s past, or at least in the years Pop-Break has been covering the show, it’s all been about the movies. We’ve been in the trenches wondering whether it’ll be Avatar or The Hurt Locker, The Social Network or The King’s Speech. When it came to acting, a lot of the nominees were weak or the races were quite obvious (see Christoph Waltz or Christian Bale for the past two years in the Best Supporting Actor category). Now we get to marvel at a race between the likes of George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio for Best Actor. It’s funny how things play out.

Before we go into our thoughts about the winners, Gervais’ hosting duties were solid as always. Some of his jokes and pop-culture skewerings were a little too easy — the Justin Beiber and Kim Kardashian jokes are the stuff of beginning comedians, not a talent like Gervais. But admittedly, these obvious jokes were still very good. I wish Gervais was a little more risky with his jokes, going for some of the more pointed insults that he produced last year.

Best Supporting Actor, Motion Picture: Christopher Plummer, Beginners
I’m calling it now — Christopher Plummer is the lock for Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars. He’s really been the go-to older character actor over the past decade, and for good reason. I’ve heard his role in this movie was one of his all-time best. Good for you, Mr. Von Trapp.

Best Actress TV Series Comedy/Musical: Lauren Dern, Enlightened
I was thinking they’d go for Tina Fey, since she’s the perennial favorite, so I’m really surprised that Laura Dern won. I’ve heard nothing but abysmal things about Enlightened.

Best Mini-Series or TV Movie: Downton Abbey
It’s the hotness. When it debuted this past week, Facebook and the Twittersphere exploded with love — everyone from Patton Oswalt to that dude you know from high school digs it. But look at the other noms, they were insane — Too Big To Fail, Mildred Pierce, The Hour, all stalwarts.

Actress Mini-Series or TV Movie: Kate Winslet, Mildred Pierce
She’s the best actress of this generation. It was a no-brainer.

Best Actor, TV Series Drama: Kelsey Grammer, Boss
Good for Fraiser. Boss seemed to be criminally under-watched, and Grammer deserves some love.

Best TV Series Drama: Homeland
I love Boardwalk Empire, but Homeland has been the absolute darling of the fall TV season. DVD sales and Netflix rentals are going through the roof for this show. Also, if it can beat out Boardwalk AND Game Of Thrones, that’s saying something.

Best Score: Ludovic Bource, The Artist
A lay-up. It’s a predominantly silent film, so the score is vital. Trent and Atticus, despite their awesome work, are second banana this year.

Best Original Song: ‘Masterpiece’ from W.E.
I really thought Mary J. would take it for The Help — it was a pretty decent song. But Madonna’s movie, which got surprisingly decent reviews, is actually pretty decent itself. By the way, no one looked happy she won. And her arms are still freakishly gross.

Actor in a Mini-Series: Idris Elba, Luther
He’s been a very underrated character actor in America, but on this BBC show, he proves he’s a dramatic force to be reckoned with. By the way, was everyone British in this category?

Best Actress Comedy or Musical: Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn
I think this really solidifies her run for a Best Actress nom for the Oscars. This was a really tough nomination pool, some really amazing actresses. I think if Winslet is the No. 1 modern actress of our time. Williams is making the case for No. 2.

Best Actor Mini Series, TV Movie: Peter Dinklage, Game Of Thrones
He won the Emmy, so it’s natural he’d win this. And who knew he was from New Jersey? Nice!

Best Animated Film: The Adventures Of Tintin
Animated films were quite weak this year … but I’m glad Spielberg took the chance to shout out Simon Pegg and Nick Frost.

Best Screenplay: Woody Allen, Midnight In Paris
Woody’s comeback tour is really in full effect.

Supporting Actress Series, TV Movie, Mini-Series: Jessica Lange, American Horror Story
This is what happens when you play one of the creepiest women on TV today — you win big. Little surprised Maggie Smith didn’t snag it for Downton Abbey.

Foreign Film: A Separation
Interesting that a lot of Americans were involved in these foreign films. While I’ve never seen A Separation, this film seemed to have award winner written all over it.

Best Actress, TV Series or Drama: Claire Danes, Homeland
Wow, she went from punchline to a winning two Globes in three years. Props to her reference to My So-Called Life. Homeland‘s creators should be hearing the sounds of cash registers in their ears.

Actor TV Series, Comedy/Musical: Matt LeBlac, Episodes
Showtime killed it tonight. This series will get some love after a great critical but highly under-the-radar run.

Best Supporting Actress, Motion Picture: Octavia Spencer, The Help
This was a tough one to call, but Spencer was awesome in this movie and has come a long way from getting stabbed in the head in Rob Zombie’s Halloween 2.

Best Director: Martin Scorsese, Hugo
Color me shocked on this one. Of the directors in this year’s pool, Marty’s had the least buzz. But then again, this is Scorsese, and he’s the man. I think this really throws a wrench in the works. Will Hugo start gaining steam for Best Picture during Oscar time?

Best Series, Comedy or Musical: Modern Family
Not a surprise — this is easily the best show on TV today. It remains fresh, sharp and hilarious. If you aren’t watching it, you are missing out. And the cast probably gave the best acceptance speech of the night.

Best Actor Comedy or Musical: Jean DuJardin, The Artist
I wonder if he could steal the Oscar. He’s got nothing but absolute rave reviews. His speech was also pretty damn funny and genuine.

Best Actress Drama: Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
She’s the best actress ever … just give her The Oscar now.

Best Comedy or Musical: The Artist
Seriously, the love for this film is undeniable tonight, but will this love translate to Oscar love? This is the Foreign Press, not the Academy.

Best Actor, Drama: George Clooney, The Descendants
This is going to be Clooney’s year. I honestly think he’ll take the Best Actor nod and he has a really solid chance to win for Best Director and Best Picture.

Best Picture, Drama: The Descendants
This is and isn’t a surprise. It’s not a surprise because the film has won so many awards from the guilds and other critic’s circles. But this is still a small, intimate, family drama. It was going up against so many bigger-budget, award-bait films.

Bill Bodkin is the gray bearded owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, he is lucky husband, and proud father to a beautiful daughter named Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site's podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites