AS HOLLYWOOD ELITES GIRD THEIR LOINS FOR RICKY GERVAIS’ HOSTING OF THE 69TH ANNUAL GOLDEN GLOBES, the public salivates in waiting.
“I don’t really care who his targets are,” one commenter remarked at Entertainment Weekly. “I will just sit back and enjoy the carnage.”
“Finally someone who has the balls to give Hollywood & all its fake, inane, vacuous overpayed beasts a long overdue reality check!!,” says a YouTube commenter. ” Rip’m all a new a**hole Ricky.”
La La Land’s glitteriest stars will alight upon the Beverly Hilton Sunday night, but it’s the British comic with the blistering tongue who dominates the buzz. Some celebrities have publicly pleaded for mercy, while others feign good humor.
“If he mocks me, he has to do it silently, without any words,” said actor Jean Dujardin, nominated as best actor for the silent film The Artist. And Elton John, nominated for a song in Gnomeo & Juliet, puts a brave face forward: “I’m British. I can take it.”
Expect this year’s audience to be larger than last year’s 17 million viewers — NBC’s highest rated nonsports show for the entire year — as more tune in to find out what the fuss is about. The comic’s past zingers hit particularly hard at Charlie Sheen, Hugh Hefner, Robert Downey Jr. and even Angelina Jolie.
For the public, part of the appeal is Gervais’ acidic skewering of Hollywood’s elite one percenters who bask in their own reflected glory and the privilege it buys — and the proof is literally in the pudding this year: attendees will dine on a chocolate pudding garnished with edible gold flakes that sell for $135 a gram, The Guardian reports. It’s a galling display of entitlement to activists who see poor people go hungry daily.
“This is an irony that the people who need it least often get free food wherever they go,” said Joel Berg, of the New York City Coalition Against Hunger. “But we still make it extraordinarily difficult for people to obtain government food benefits.”
In a year when “Occupy” protests have have sprouted in cities around the globe in reaction to gaping disparities of wealth, Ricky Gervais is a stand-in for the struggling poor and middle class who’d like to tell the solipsistic rich just what they think of them.
“The rich have more money to spend on fripperies because they have sucked it all up from the ‘have less than evers’,” writes lybis at the Guardian. “Give ’em hell Ricky!”
Gervais himself admits as much when he says, “Do I pander to the 200 privileged millionaires in the room, or do I do it for the people watching at home? There’s no contest.”