How Seth Meyers Made Lemonade Out of Lemons at the Golden Globes

He made a good situation out of very awkward potential.

By Seija Rankin Jan 08, 2018 4:12 AMTags
Seth Meyers, 2018 Golden GlobesPaul Drinkwater/NBC

Seth Meyers inherited a very complicated Golden Globes ceremony. When he was announced as the host of the 2018 show last fall, no one had any idea how far the Times Up movement would go—in fact, the Times Up movement wasn't even a thing. 

But cut to January 7 and the issue of sexual harassment in Hollywood was on everyone's hearts and minds, making the job of Golden Globes host a very difficult one. All eyes would be on Meyers, judging whether he addressed the issue enough, whether he addressed it too much, and whether he struck the exact right tone. 

There's really no basis of comparison for a hosting situation like this (thankfully), but Seth knocked it out of the park. 

Golden Globe Awards 2018 Winners: The Complete List

The monologue is of course the most important part of any host's performance. It not only sets the tone for the entire evening but, on a more technical level, is really the only time that the host matters. The rest of the evening they basically pop back in to move things along or, like last year's Oscar ceremony, try to help everyone figure out who actually won Best Picture. Meyers decided to go with what he knows best: No theatrics, no song and dance, no gimmicks. He simply delivered the points that needed to be made and shot zingers at the people who needed to be...zinged

Some of the highlights included, as can be expected from the hold-nothing-back late-night host, major digs at many of the accused men in Hollywood. When you kick the whole speech off with the sentence "Good evening, ladies and gentleman," there's really no question as to what the tone is going to be. He got Harvey Weinstein ("He'll be back in 20 years when he becomes the first person ever booed during the In Memoriam"), he got Kevin Spacey ("I hope Christopher Plummer can do a Southern accent, because Kevin Spacey couldn't"), he got Donald Trump ("The only name that would make him angrier would be the Hillary Mexico Salad Association"). 

Meyers also pulled in some outside talent for the monologue, paying tribute to a tradition in which many hosts use nominated actors for their pre-recorded show introductions. He decided to hold a special edition of his Late Night segment Jokes Seth Can't Tell, in which he enlisted different members of the audience to deliver the punch lines to his jokes. He borrowed the likes of Jessica Chastain, Billy Eichner, Issa Rae and Hong Chau to read burns like "But the actress who plays his wife is only 32" and "You lost me at 'of age.'"

But the best (or at least the most fun) part of the monologue came when he included Golden Globes OG host Amy Poehler in the festivities for some good-old-fashioned Seth and Amy banter and fantastic Amy one-liners like "I'm reclaiming my wine." (Otherwise known as our new 2018 mantra). 

2018 Golden Globes Red Carpet Fashion

The rest of the evening was pretty unremarkable in the Seth department, but that is both the way it always goes with award shows and due to the rapid succession of powerful and moving acceptance speeches. How is anyone supposed to remember what kinds of jokes the host makes in between presenters when Oprah just got three standing ovations?

(Although special recognition should be given to the late-in-the-show joke "Our next presenters had the chance to do what we've all wanted to do this part year: Drive our car off a cliff.")

The reaction to Meyers' performance was far and away some of the most positive that we've seen in recent memory and the entire industry is impressed with his ability to mix the serious with the comedic and to find a way to discuss heavy topics in a relatable manner. Sure, he's no Oprah, but no one was expecting him to be. 

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