So, is this what awards shows are going to be like in Trump’s America?
The Golden Globes are the official kickoff of awards season, and if Sunday night served as a harbinger of what’s to come from the entertainment industry, expect the current president-elect to loom large. Donald Trump was invoked throughout the ceremony, from jokes to downright serious speeches.
The night’s hosting duties were left in the hands of Jimmy Fallon, who faced a boatload of criticism from the left last year for having Trump on his show in a playful September appearance.
Not this time, Fallon promised just days before the telecast. “The whole night won’t focus on that, but it will be a week before the inauguration, so it will be on everyone’s mind,” Fallon told the Hollywood Reporter. “It’s the first and maybe the last party that we’ll have in 2017.”
Fallon’s jokes — which came after a disastrous start to his monologue, as his teleprompter failed — fell flat in the room, eliciting some laughs, “ohs” and uncomfortable silences.
“A lot of people have wondered what it would have been like if King Joffrey [of ‘Game of Thrones’] had lived,” Fallon said. “Well, in 12 days, we’re going to find out.”
Hugh Laurie, who won for best supporting TV actor for his role in AMC’s “The Night Manager,” took swipes at Trump and Republicans during his acceptance speech. He declared that he won at “the last ever” Golden Globes. “I don’t mean to be gloomy, it’s just it has the words ‘Hollywood,’ ‘foreign’ and ‘press’ in the title. I also think even to some Republicans that the word ‘association’ is sketchy.”
Laurie added: “I accept this award on behalf of psychopathic billionaires everywhere.”
During the telecast, a 2014 Trump tweet criticizing the ABC show “Blackish” went viral.
Oh, and then there was Meryl Streep’s acceptance speech for what was essentially a lifetime achievement award. Rather than talk about her remarkable, decades-long career, she spent much of her time railing against the president-elect and defending Hollywood.
“You and all of us in this room, really, belong to the most vilified segments in American society right now,” she told the crowd at the Beverly Hilton.
Streep’s speech — which also served as a call to action for Hollywood to support journalism — became one of the biggest Globes “moments.” She never actually mentioned Trump by name, rather directly referencing his mocking of a disabled reporter during campaign season in calling it the 2016 performance that stunned her the most.
“It sank its hooks in my heart. Not because it was good. There was nothing good about it. But it was effective and it did its job. It made its intended audience laugh and show their teeth,” she said. “It kind of broke my heart when I saw it. I still can’t get it out of my head because it wasn’t in a movie. It was real life.”
Soon, political observers and pundits on social media debated whether the speech and the Golden Globes represented something larger about the American political system.
While 2016 ended in disappointment for liberals, it didn’t for all Americans — many were pleased with the outcome of the election, and very little during the Golden Globes spoke to that sizable segment of the American public.
The entertainment and celebrity world, which helped give rise to Trump’s stature within pop culture and fueled his star power, is now in full-on rebuke mode. The man who in 2007 received a Hollywood Walk of Fame star, is a pariah in Tinseltown in 2017.
This turnaround is unsurprising given that the entertainment industry skews liberal. Trump publicly criticized rival Hillary Clinton’s use of celebrity star power during her campaign, saying he doesn’t need such A-listers at his inauguration (although he then claimed inauguration singer Jackie Evancho received a boost in album sales because of him).
Many wondered whether Trump would tweet about all the swipes taken at him during the Golden Globes. He did, after all, repeatedly tweet reviews of Alec Baldwin’s Trump impersonation on “Saturday Night Live.”
Shortly after the ceremony, Trump gave a brief interview to the New York Times, telling the newspaper he hadn’t seen Streep’s speech or other parts of the show. But he dismissed Streep as “a Hillary lover” and flatly denied mocking the reporter, who works for the Times.
He said that he was “not surprised” to be attacked by “liberal movie people.”
Hours later, he fired off three tweets:
“Meryl Streep, one of the most over-rated actresses in Hollywood, doesn’t know me but attacked last night at the Golden Globes,” Trump tweeted. He again denied mocking the reporter, writing he was showed him “groveling.”
And, Trump added, Streep is “a Hillary flunky who lost big.”