He sang, danced, made some insults and managed to be self-deprecating in his 15-minute-plus intro at the 85th Academy Awards. Seth MacFarlane was arguably a “risky” choice as host for the sometimes stiff Academy. “What would he do?” many thought before going into the 2013 Oscars.
I wondered if MacFarlane would be too crass for the Oscars, but I think he did a classy job. He looked fantastic in a classic tuxedo. I’ve always found MacFarlane to be clean-cut and handsome. The Oscars even poked fun at whether or not MacFarlane would be a good host when a video screen emerged onstage, featuring actor William Shatner as Captain James T. Kirk of “Star Trek,” who proceeded to “look into the future” to forecast that MacFarlane would be dubbed the “worst Oscars host ever.”
“Your jokes are tasteless and inappropriate, and everyone ends up hating you,” said Shatner, noting, “I’m here to stop you from doing what you’re about to do.”
That prompted MacFarlane to show off his song and dance skills, performing “The Way You Look Tonight,” with Charlize Theron and “Magic Mike” star Channing Tatum. Daniel Radcliffe and Joseph Gordon-Levitt then joined MacFarlane for a version of “High Hopes.”
MacFarlane kept the jokes going throughout the night, at one point joking that the Oscars ceremony, which is held on Sunday, is like church, “but only with with more people praying.”
With that being said, I wanted to point out how much of a LGBT ally MacFarlane is. MacFarlane came to support gay rights and gay marriage after a family member wondered aloud whether his gay cousin’s homosexuality could be “cured“. The incident angered MacFarlane, who said in a 2008 interview in The Advocate, that such a statement “was fucking horrifying to hear from somebody that you love”. He credits his parents for raising him to be a logical person.
MacFarlane is passionate about his support for gay rights. He said it is “infuriating and idiotic” that two gay partners “have to go through this fucking dog and pony act when they stop at a hotel and the guy behind the counter says, ‘You want one room or two?'”. He went on to say, “I’m incredibly passionate about my support for the gay community and what they’re dealing with at this current point in time”. MacFarlane continued, “Why is it that Johnny Spaghetti Stain in fucking Georgia can knock a woman up, legally be married to her, and then beat the shit out of her, but these two intelligent, sophisticated writers who have been together for 20 years can’t get married?”
MacFarlane, in recognition of “his active, passionate commitment to Humanist values, and his fearless support of equal marriage rights and other social justice issues”, was named the Harvard Humanist of the Year in 2011.
So did you watch the Oscars? How do you think MacFarlane did as host?