You had to expect more awkwardness than usual during this year’s Oscars ceremony because the only thing Old Hollywood flubs more than the gender pay gap, is talking about anything timely or incendiary. And this Academy Awards, which was hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, had to cover a lot of “uncomfortable” topics—and for its 90th anniversary no less.
Here, we’ll run through the most poignant, corny and cringe-worthy moments from 2018’s Academy Awards.
The Opening Monologue
It began with a whimper, taking a dig at Donald Trump over Lupita Nyong’o’s Mexican living and Kenyan heritage. Then came the corniness: eschewing last year’s Moonlight Best Picture flub by quipping the accountants tried to do comedy “on their own.” Zingers did include comparing Harvey Weinstein’s punishment to Carmine Caridi. “Carmine got the same punishment as Harvey Weinstein for giving his neighbor a copy of ‘Seabiscuit’ on VHS.” Zing! And that Get Out joke was a miss, if only because making fun of a super serious thing we parody out of necessity is never a good look. But there was an acknowledgment of some noteworthy updates since #Oscarssowhite hashtag went viral a few years ago. None as funny as this one. “It’s a positive change, this is a night for positivity,” said Kimmel. “And our plan is we’re going to shine a light on a group of outstanding and positive films each of which got crushed by ‘Black Panther.’”
That’s right, damn it!
But there was a second change he pointed out as well, “I remember a time when the major studio heads didn’t believe a woman or a minority could open a superhero movie and the reason I remember that time is because it was March of last year.” It really was! Still, the highlight of the comedian’s intro may have been the jetski moment. Kimmel said he’d give one to the person with the shortest speech. “Why waste precious time thanking your mother when you could be taking her for the ride of her life on a brand new jet ski,” he quipped.
Mary J. Blige Takes Us To Heaven During Her Performance Of “Mighty River”
Y’all, there really are no words. You’re just going to have to be slack-jawed for yourselves at this performance. Mary J. Blige is also the first person to be nominated in both the Best Original Song category and the Supporting Actress category. Just a slight flex.
Tiffany Haddish and Maya Rudolph Hit the Stage In Their House Shoes
These two comedic actresses lit up the screen together and their chemistry is undeniable. Someone please greenlight a project starring these ladies.
Jordan Peele Wins For Original Screenplay
Look, Peele is out here making history. He’s the first Black person to win in the Original Screenplay category in the award’s 90-year history. He was only the fourth to ever be nominated. Oh yeah, he’s also the first Black person nominated for the trifecta of Best Original Screenplay, Best Director, and Producer. Such a feat is monumental.
Kobe Bryant Wins Oscar For Best Animated Short Film
In a field that included amazing projects such as Garden Party, Negative Space, and Lou, the retired athlete proved he can put points on the board wherever he goes. Kobe Bryant is just the kind of person you can never, ever underestimate or ignore. The Black Mamba lives on.
Frances McDormand Creates A Stand-Up Moment
After winning Best Actress for Three Billboards, Frances McDormand came on stage, invited all of the women nominees to stand up and then entreated the Hollywood establishment to help them get their next projects made. Big moment folks.
…the biggest upset?
Jordan Peele Loses Two Out Of Three Awards
Peele lost to Guillermo Del Toro twice tonight. The first time for Best Director. The second, for the big one, Best Film. Still, his achievement should not be overlooked. He’s now part of a list that is way-too-short. And Peele is far from done. He’s already talked a Get Out sequel.