The verdict on Ricky Gervais’s third stint as Golden Globes host appears to be this: The host was guilty of playing it safe and being too blah.
“Funny enough, but far too harmless,” says The Post’s Hank Stuever.
“The audience — at home and in the auditorium — came expecting fight night, and all we got instead was a regular old awards show,”write Vulture’s Willa Paskin and Amanda Dobbins.
“If Gervais doesn’t get invited back in 2013, it might be because he was so boring Sunday night,” declares the Huffington Post’s Mo Ryan.
Of course, Gervais has already said he doesn’t want to host the tipsy trophy night again, at least not for a while. (And in another “of course,” he also said that last year.)
But let’s be honest about what Gervais’s options were this year.
After last year’s controversy, he either had to tone down the crassness or ratchet up the insults so high that, ultimately, a fist fight involving Gervais, Brad Pitt, Brad Pitt’s cane, Jeremy Irons and Elton John would have broken out, a situation diffused only after Rooney Mara whipped out her Taser and buzzed some A-list necks. (She’s Lisbeth Salander, guys. You know she was carrying one last night in her clutch to make sure she stays in character for “The Girl Who Played With Fire.”)
In other words, two roads diverged in a Golden Globe wood. And Gervais took the one less likely to prevent him from working in Hollywood again. Because let’s be fair: If he wants to continue making movie deals, he can’t exactly stand at the Beverly Hilton podium and bust on Harvey Weinstein (Madonna, however, can) or call George Clooney anything other than the “Cloonmeister General, Giorgio Cloo-noo.” (Yes, for those who didn’t watch, he actually said that.)
But, to continue on this fairness track, surely Gervais could have been more creative when crafting his material. Making fun of Justin Bieber and Kim Kardashian just seems so ... lazy. The Internet regularly produces bon mots about both of them that are infinitely nastier than anything Gervais dished out. There is no question, as other critics said, that the man formerly known as David Brent could have done better.
So assuming that he might consider reversing his decision not to go for a fourth hosting go-round, should he emcee the Golden Globes again next year? Vote in the poll below or post a comment to weigh in on Gervais’s performance.