The Golden Globes. Are you offended yet?


If outrage is predictable, is it still outrage?

This article first appeared in the Daily Telegraph.

Ricky Gervais said some offensive things at the Golden Globes. Jokes about Caitlyn Jenner, catholic priests and Ben Affleck are just a sample. Predictably, the internet was outraged, and wasn’t that exactly the point?

Next question. When outrage becomes this predictable is it even still genuine outrage?

The Golden Globes have become an increasingly big joke, and every year fewer celebrities bother attending, and less of the general public bother watching.

Taking home a Golden Globe compared to an Oscar is like winning a World Championship compared to the Olympics. Sure it’s something, but it’s not the something that everyone cares about.

This was the fourth time Gervais has hosted, so it wasn’t like we didn’t know what to expect.

When you expect your racist grandma won’t say anything racist at Christmas, that doesn’t make you a kind soul, it makes you an idiot.

The Golden Globes hired Gervais on purpose, and he performed as expected. And you were outraged? Tweeting and posting about what a horrible human Ricky Gervais is for saying that thing?

You’re talking about the Golden Globes, and that’s exactly what the Golden Globes want. You’re just another part of the media machine, operating as intended. The Golden Globes know that on social media, outrage has replaced information. In order to get the clicks, being informative isn’t enough, you also need to be offensive.

The Golden Globes are hoping that by being outrageous, somebody might give a stuff about the results. Until you realise the The Martian won for best comedy and/or musical.

Then it’s back to focusing on Gervais’s jokes, which were great for their humour and truth-telling.

In the rush to rejoice in what Caitlyn Jenner has done for the transgender community, we do forget that she killed a human being with a car.

The Catholic Church still hasn’t properly paid for what many of its priests have done, and there was that Roman Polanski joke. Back in 1977, Polanski was charged with raping a 12-year-old girl and has never faced trial.

If you think it’s all too much, well the Bill Cosby scandal was started by Hannibal Buress, another comedian. This is after interviews with several of Cosby’s victims were mostly ignored.

So what if some of Gervais’s jokes missed the mark? He was hired to do what he does, which is exactly what he did, and I don’t think he cares what you or I think. Gervais created The Office and Extras, two shows known for making squeamish moments hilarious.

By the way, the winner for the Golden Globe for best TV Drama was Mr Robot. Drop everything and watch it right now. It’s one piece of television that’s worth much more attention, and after all this outrage, I hope it’s OK to impart a bit of information.

Xavier Toby is a writer and comedian.

Catch him performing at Perth Fringe World through most of February.

His second comedy memoir ‘Going Out of My Mined’ is available now.

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