I don't want to say that was the sorriest display of Award Show predicting of all time, but if there were a shadowy-group of individuals that kept track of Award Show predictions, I think I would have my blog taken away from me for using it so irresponsibly.
Of the 16 categories that I took a stab at guessing (I mean really, who cares about best supporting actor in a TV mini-series?), I guessed 8 correctly. 50% isn't bad, right? Well, I would love to tell that to my parents when they see I have an F on my report card. I got 50% of the points in the class, mom! (Dear mom and dad: I do not currently have any Fs and do not, repeat, DO NOT spend my time capriciously blogging when I should be studying).
50% aside, I am even more upset by the fact that I missed so many of the Movie categories. TV is easy, the Emmys were held not four months ago and the Golden Globes usually do not deviate too radically from TV's highest honor. Mad Men was obvious, as was 30 Rock. Tina Fey has won every award in the galaxy (rightfully so) and there was no way that the Golden Globes were going to snub the modern day Lucille Ball. John Adams was fairly obvious and I should have seen Alec Baldwin coming from a mile away but I got cute and said that the HFPA would choose David Duchovny instead.
Actually, when I think about it, there were only two real surprises in the television category and those were the lead Drama actor and actress categories. Gabriel Byrne won Best Actor and Anna Paquin won Best Actress. I correctly guessed on Anna Paquin, assuming that the HFPA would be on the lookout for fresh meat after so many female leads have gone missing from prime-time. If True Blood maintains momentum, Anna Paquin can be the Agency's go-to-girl for the next few years. I must admit, however, that I was completely blind-sided by Gabriel Byrne. If I had ranked all the actors before-hand from 5 to 1 in order of chance of winning, the list would have looked like this:
5. Jonathan Rhys Meyers
4. Gabriel Byrne
3. Hugh Laurie
2. Jon Hamm
1. Michael C. Hall
But on the TV side of the equation, I managed to end up with a respectable 5 out of 7.
Then came the movies.
Oh Lord, what happened? I can count on one hand the categories that I guessed correctly in the Movie section of the show. I guessed Vicky Christina Barcelona right (pretty easy considering its only competition was the lukewarmly-received In Bruges). I guessed Heath Ledger correctly (an obvious choice, but I cannot undersell how powerful a moment it was or how touching Christopher Nolan's acceptance of the award was anyway). And I guessed Kate Winslet as Best Actress for Revolutionary Road correctly. Everything else....completely, inexcusably, 100% wrong on every single category.
How did this happen? Well, I cannot defend it and I cannot change it but I can at least explain my reasoning. A few of the winners I fully expected to win the Oscar for their respective categories (Mickey Rourke for Best Actor, Slumdog Millionaire for Best Picture, Danny Boyle for Best Director) and I thought the Golden Globes would go in a different direction. I figured the HFPA knew that Rourke, Slumdog and even someone like Viola Davis would most likely win the Oscars, so they would deliberately choose someone else. Apparently, I was wrong, very very wrong.
"Alright, smart guy," I hear you ask, "if you know so much about how the Academy picks its winners then why didn't you just predict the Academy awards?"
Well, that is how I plan to seek my redemption. The Golden Globes has brought me down, shamed me, made me less of a man. And my only hope to retrieve my reputation is through the Oscars. That redemptions starts today, right here, right now. I am making a Custer-like last stand to maintain my standing in Pop culture knowledge and understanding by predicting the Oscar nominations. Mind you, I will not pick the winners just yet because the REAL nominations haven't been made public but I can get a head start at the very least. Ladies and gentleman, here are who your 2009 Oscar nominees will be in the 6 "big" categories.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Dark Knight
Danny Boyle - Slumdog Millionaire
Sam Mendes - Revolutionary Road
Christopher Nolan - The Dark Knight
David Fincher - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Gus Van Sant - Milk
Best Lead Actor
Sean Penn - Milk
Brad Pitt - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Mickey Rourke - The Wrestler
Frank Langella - Frost/Nixon
Richard Jenkins - The Visitor
Best Lead Actress
Kate Winslet - Revolutionary Road
Anne Hathaway - Rachel Getting Married
Meryl Streep - Doubt
Sally Hawkins - Happy-Go-Lucky
Cate Blanchette - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Best Supporting Actor
Heath Ledger - The Dark Knight
Josh Brolin - Milk
Phillip Seymour Hoffman - Doubt
Ralph Fiennes - The Duchess
Brendon Gleeson - In Bruges
Best Supporting Actress
Viola Davis - Doubt
Kate Winslet - The Reader
Marisa Tomei - The Wrestler
Penelope Cruz - Vicky Christina Barcelona
Taraji P. Henson - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
I hope I am right, for redemption: thy name is Oscar!