Since his first time hosting the awards in 2010, Ricky Gervais and the Golden Globes have long had a fruitful partnership. The Globes — a famously looser, less buttoned-up affair than the Oscars — get a cheeky emcee who can puncture the artifice of the movie and TV biz (and has done so four previous times). Gervais, meanwhile, gets to roast everyone in the room.
That’s precisely what happened on Sunday (January 5) at the 2020 show, when the host began with a simple, “They’re just jokes. We’ll all gonna die soon, and there’s no sequel” and ended by calling out Apple, Amazon, and Disney by name for their questionable business practices, name-checking sweatshops in particular. Keeping it nice and light!
Gervais has used his monologue to previously target Caitlyn Jenner, Madonna, Mel Gibson, Tim Allen, and, well, pretty every everyone else. But for 2020 — his apparent final time as host ever — he went nuclear. “You know nothing about the real world,” he said to everyone in the room. “Most of you spent less time in school than Greta Thunberg. So when you come up, accept your little award, thank your agent and your god, and fuck off.”
As per usual, no one was safe. The entire Marvel Cinematic Universe got branded “fantasy adventure nonsense,” Kevin Hart’s Oscar-host revocation got a shoutout, as did Baby Yoda (or, whoops, that’s Joe Pesci), and that eternal 2019 motto, which surmises that Jeffrey Epstein didn’t die by suicide. (To audible groans, Gervais went in: “I know he’s your friend, but I don’t care.”)
The real star of Gervais’s opening barrage, though, was Tom Hanks. The legendary good guy sat there with mouth agape at a Felicity Huffman prison joke that targeted her role in the college admissions scandal. There were lots of good reaction shots throughout the set, in fact. What else would you expect?
As for the overwhelming whiteness of the nominees? “Many talented people of color were snubbed… there’s nothing we can do about that. The Hollywood Foreign press are very racist,” he said.
The man was relentless. He deployed a good barb about Leonardo DiCaprio’s penchant for young models and even made a timely reference to the (apparently little-seen) Cats by taking a dig at James Corden. And he didn’t stop there! Perhaps the biggest bomb of Gervais’s entire monologue was a particularly blue quip about Cats star Dame Judi Dench licking herself. You can imagine the rest.
The 2020 Golden Globes are well underway, and you can see the entire winners list right here.