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Golden Globes 2017 Recap

[Esquire] Jimmy Fallon hosted the 74th annual Golden Globes on Sunday night—or what he called the first and maybe last party of 2017. This was disappointing to hear even before NBC’s three-hour telecast began. Even though the Globes are the spunkier, livelier, boozier cousin to the more prestigious and self-serious awards shows, they remain a rather tame and predictable state of affairs—not exactly the Hollywood banger we would normally turn to amongst an approaching monumental change of power.

Nevertheless, the show had its variety of moments, some of which will sit with us throughout the next few months, others that will fall out of the cultural conversation by the end of the week. Here are some of the best, and some of the worst, from the star-studded night.

Best Night

La La Land broke a Globes record by winning seven awards, including best musical/comedy film. In fairness, the movie seemed preordained to have done well considering it’s an actual musical that takes place in Los Angeles and features Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling (both of whom also won their acting categories). Its director, Damien Chazelle, earned directing and screenplay awards to go along with the movie’s Best Original Score and Best Original Song victories. Get ready: This is the start of having “City of Stars” stuck in your head until the Oscars.

Best Speech

After a montage displaying the incredible catalogue of movies and roles to which Meryl Streep has lent her talent, the three-time Oscar-winner used her Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award speech to speak openly and honestly about everything but herself; namely, the climate that President-elect Trump began fostering at the beginning of his campaign. What followed was a stirring speech—memorizing and identifying the non-American birthplaces of a handful of fellow actors to highlight their immigrant past and making an impassioned plea for strong journalism in the years ahead—that quieted a buzzed room. She ended her lesson on empathy with a quote from the late Carrie Fisher: “Take your broken heart, make it into art.”

Worst Larynx

Streep lost her voice this week, so she couldn’t give her speech with the same fervor and gusto we’ve come to expect. Still, something about her scratchy whisper made her message all the more moving.

Best Musical Montage

If La La Land wasn’t already the odds-on favorite, Fallon and the NBC crew essentially telegraphed their stable of victories with an impressive opening montage mimicking the musical’s own opening traffic jam number. The line of cars included O.J.’s white Ford Bronco, a limousine carrying a sleepy Jon Snow, but most notably featured a truck full of the Stranger Things kids listening to Millie Bobby Brown’s rapping. Oh, and did you know Justin Timberlake is Fallon’s best friend?

Best Comeback

Barb is back! Well, she was for just a brief 10 seconds in that montage, rising from the pool to her synchronized swimming redemption. Consider this her final plea to return for the second season of Stranger Things.

Worst Start to a Monologue

What a way to begin the show. After Mariah Carey’s gaffe on New Year’s Eve, wouldn’t NBC double check that the teleprompter was functioning properly? Apparently not. Fallon giggled and stalled his way through a minute of awkwardness until a new monitor could be wheeled in. Maybe the Russians hacked the machine? No, Fallon condemned Dick Clark Productions for possible sabotage instead.

Best Shout-out

Donald Glover spoke on behalf of the Atlanta cast and crew for winning the best musical/comedy television series. He thanked the city of Atlanta, the black folks that live there and then, before leaving the stage, thanked the rap group Migos for their song “Bad and Bougie.” “That’s the best song ever, so yeah,” Glover said.

Worst Mistake

On the surface, Michael Keaton mistakenly combining Hidden Figures and Fences to create the new movie Hidden Fences isn’t that big of a deal. On the other hand, it represented another disappointing inability to distinguish between two movies prominently featuring black actors. Earlier on the red carpet, NBC host Jenna Bush made the same gaffe when interviewing Pharrell, who became lost in a Ben Affleck-ian existential stare while she finished her question. Half of Twitter became enraged while the other half started looking up how shock collars work on dogs.

 Getty Matt Winkelmeyer
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