Seth MacFarlane As Oscars 2013 Host - With 40 Million Viewers, What’s All the Fuss About?

seth mac With all the flap this week over the performance by first-time host Seth MacFarlane at this year€™s Academy Awards, I€™ve forgotten who won best picture. Oh, yeah, it was Argo. A book could be written just about the history of Oscar hosts. There have been the great (Bob Hope, Johnny Carson, Billy Crystal), the lame (David Letterman, Chevy Chase) and everyone else. And then there was Family Guy creator Seth McFarlane. An Oscar host drives the show. Musical numbers are usually forgotten, as are the awards. Do you remember who won best actress in 2003? Neither do I. But I remember Billy Crystal being brought on stage as Hannibal Lecter. And I remember David Letterman€™s €œOprah, Uma, Uma Oprah€ joke and I wish I didn€™t. Seth MacFarlane€™s turn as host of the Academy Awards will be long remembered, and the consensus among most bloggers, tweeps and the entertainment press, who have been brutally unkind, is that MacFarlane will rank among the worst. And even as pundits were calling for MacFarlane to be a one-shot host, MacFarlane himself said he loved the job but would never host again, No pi in the sky, apparently. No doubt many viewers were surprised by MacFarlane's frat boy sense of humor and take-no-prisoners jokes. It€™s just as likely viewers were shaking their heads wondering who this host was, anyway. MacFarlane is not exactly a household name. So perhaps the negative reaction by the masses is understandable. Never before has an Oscar host performed a song and dance number about female nudity in film, with the Gay Men€™s Chorus of Los Angeles backing him up. And none will ever again. But MacFarlane's performance should have come as no surprise to Hollywood or to the entertainment press. When you hire MacFarlane you don€™t get an Honest Abe, you get...MacFarlane. He's smart, funny, off color, clever, rude, sometimes crude, and immensely talented. It€™s difficult to believe that the in-the-know people in entertainment were at all surprised by MacFarlane€™s unorthodox performance. The question these people should be asking is, why wasn't MacFarlane unchained? Surely they have seen the sleeper hit, Ted. This year€™s Academy Awards were pretty tame in light of some of MacFarlane€™s other work. But despite the uproar this playbook has a silver lining: viewership was way up this year, meaning big numbers for both the Academy and ABC. 40.3 million viewers tuned in to watch Seth MacFarlane banter with William Shatner and sing "We Saw Your Boobs.". In the end, it's the bucks that count. It all comes down to the bottom line, which is something Hollywood knows all about.
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Not to be confused with the captain of the Enterprise, James Kirk is a writer and film buff who lives in South Carolina.