Oscars 2013: Was Seth MacFarlane Really The Worst Host Ever?

25 February 2013 by

Seth MacFarlene was always a controversial choice to host the Oscars. You were never going to get a straightforward, family-friendly show from the man behind Family Guy and Ted. And so, somewhat predictably, his presenting skills at last night’s show drew a mixed response, winning laughter and boos in equal measure.

Much of the criticism was for his sexist jokes – including an opening song about women’s boobs. He also took jabs at Daniel Day-Lewis, Meryl Streep and George Clooney, among others, with a low point being a misjudged joke comparing Rihanna and Chris Brown’s relationship to the violence in Django Unchained. Not cool, Seth.

Deadline Hollywood called him “lame”, “self-indulgent” and “The Worst Oscar Host ever.” Eek. But The Hollywood Reporter was more impressed, saying: “He didn't give up, like Franco. He took the job extremely seriously and put himself out there. Ultimately, he excelled at balance.”

Twitter was equally split – with some calling him “painfully unfunny” and “horribly sexist.” He did have one high profile fan though…Piers Morgan tweeted that he was “the perfect host.” We're sure that's made him feel a whole lot better.

To be fair, hosting The Oscars is a notoriously tough gig, and Seth is not the first to have faltered. Here’s three others that have failed to impress...

1. Chris Rock

Chris Rock tried to win over the 2005 Oscars audience with his trademark edgy humour…but not everyone was impressed – especially not Jude Law, who Rock dissed in front of everyone. "You want Tom Cruise and all you can get is Jude Law? Wait. It’s not the same thing, O.K.?" said Rock ranted. "My friends were livid,” Jude said afterwards.

2. Anne Hathaway and James Franco

She was a golden girl this year, picking up a statuette for Best Supporting Actress – but it was all very different for Anne Hathaway in 2011, when she co-hosted the awards with James Franco. They were brought in to try and attract younger viewers, but universally panned by both critics and viewers. By the end, even James Franco looked like he'd rather be watching re-runs of Friends on the Comedy Channel.

3. David Letterman

He might have been one of the biggest names in US TV at the time, but that didn't stop people hating on David Letterman's stint as Oscars host in 1995. His opening skit was a joke in which he introduced Uma Thurman and Oprah Winfrey to each other, on account of them both having unusual names ("Oprah, Uma...Uma, Oprah"). That noise that sounds like laughter? It's really the audience crying with disappointment.


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