In explaining why Michael Jackson was included in the Academy Awards' In Memoriam segment, executive director Bruce Davis offered this to the Associated Press: "Think of all the blogging we would have gotten if we had left him out!" Think of all the blogging he’ll get now that he uses us as an excuse to include MJ, but not Farrah Fawcett. Doesn’t he imagine that somewhere out in the blogosphere there are Farrah Fawcett fans clicking away at her exclusion?
I’m a fan of admitting your mistakes—if you must—and letting history be history. If, in response to the Farrah faux pas, Davis had said, “Oops!,” or “Sorry! My bad!,” I would have accepted it and said, “That’s Hollywood for you.” I was surprised that Fawcett was not included in the tribute, but amazed that Jackson was. Davis justifies the Farrah decision by reminding us that she was best known for her “remarkable television work,” while including Jackson because This Is It was released posthumously. What, no mention of The Wiz? I realize I’m an ignoramus, but isn’t Jackson best known for his remarkable musical work? Should Davis do his homework, he would find that Fawcett appeared in a number of theatrical releases, a larger number than Jackson has to his credit.
I like the idea of the Academy Awards on television, but I haven’t watched in years. Oscar night’s mystique is nullified by its reality. The glitz and glamour are always surpassed by the boredom and stupidity. The only thing that interests me in the least is the clothing worn by the stars on the red carpet. That I can catch in People and on internet gossip sites (well, I can catch the best and the worst…what else matters?). When I was sophisticated enough to discriminate between flash and content (I guess I was about four), I lost interest in the Academy Awards. In trying to give all audience members what they may want, the annual show generally turns out to be insulting to most of us.
When someone thinks so little of us that he believes we won’t realize he’s insulting us, we get annoyed. Bruce Davis is annoying. Exceptionally. When he suggests that Fawcett should be memorialized in the Emmy Awards show, he suggests that we would not recall actors memorialized in both. Or that MJ was memorialized at the Grammys. With his remarks about the many wonderful writers who passed in 2009 and the shortage of time to remember everyone, he suggests we won’t recall sitting through excruciatingly long Oscar presentations thinking, “Ya’ know, I gotta get up in the morning! Will this never end?”
Perhaps I am not in a position to give vocabulary lessons (I wasn’t an English major), but I suggest that Davis cut down on his verbiage and try these simple phrases: “mea culpa,” “we made a mistake,” “we’re sorry for our error.” Then maybe his worst fears would not be realized.
To offer proof that you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t, Mr. Davis, you have ignited the bloggers you seem so determined to appease. Let the blogging begin!