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Best: Tina Fey and Amy Poehler shine
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler pretty much nailed it, but they also exposed the limitations for hosts on these structure-dominated award shows. Fey & Poehler kicked the night off with a terrific monologue that included jokes about Ricky Gervais, James Cameron, the HFPA causing cervical cancer, Daniel Day-Lewis playing ET and Mandy Patinkin's impeccable appreciation of musicals. They weren't any more obsequious than Gervais, but they delivered the acidic lines with charm that played well in the room. Invariably, though, hosts on award shows vanish as things progress and Fey & Poehler were no exception. They had a couple good moments inserting themselves as nominees for the fake telefilm "Dog President." They paired with Jennifer Lopez and George Clooney for their own Lead Actress nominations. And they played humorously drunk after losing to Lena Dunham. Ultimately, they did a great job with the part of the show they were able to control and the show would have been better giving more time to them and less time to the myriad less successful presenters.
- Daniel Fienberg