018 – 20th Screen Actors Guild Awards

sag awards

Here we are, almost one week later, and it’s time for another award show. This time it is the SAG Awards. That stands for Screen Actors Guild, if you’re not in the know, which means that this ceremony will probably manage to be even more self-congratulatory than the others. Because no one likes praising actors more than actors themselves.

I wasn’t even planning to watch the Sag’Os. It just kind of happened. One minute I am eating chips and guacamole (homemade, pretty good, not quite chunky enough for my taste) at a friend’s place, the next I’m being inundated with a bunch of actors telling me that they’re actors. At the very least it was cool to see Michael K. Williams (Omar comin’) included in this opening collage of actor stories. Less cool was Cuba Gooding, Jr., for whom I once had such respect, but who has now become a parody, going so far as to rush the stage to shout out Martin Luther King Day.

Technically that’s not how the ceremony starts. It really starts with an excellent red carpet-set pun run. Always a ridiculous time. My favorite ever was last year when the young woman on the voice-over said “Zero Dark Thirty’s Jessica Chastain looks zero dark flirty.” I still use that one.

For the most part the SAG awards are pretty boring. And I know that makes it sound like the other shows aren’t, but by comparison… At least the Golden Globes make an attempt at being funny. And it doesn’t help that most of the acceptance speeches stare pretension in the face and proceed to swallow it whole, in order to excrete it in a form that can evaporate into the air around it, and thus spread like an airborne virus.

Anyway! Here’s the list of winners:

Supporting Actress in a FIlm – Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave
Supporting Actor in a Film – Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
Actor in a Miniseries, etc. – Michael Douglas, Behind the Cadelabra
Actress in a Ministeries, etc. – Helen Mirren, Phil Spector
Actor in a Comedy Series – Ty Burrell, Modern Family
Actress in a Comedy Series – Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Ensemble in a Comedy Series – The cast of Modern Family
Actor in a Drama Series – Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Actress in a Drama Series – Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey
Ensemble in a Drama Series – The cast of Breaking Bad
Lead Actor in a Film – Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
Lead Actress in a Film – Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Ensemble in a Film – The cast of American Hustle

Wins for the likes of Cranston, Blanchett, and Modern Family are to be expected at this point; no surprises there. But there were a couple pleasant twists. Ty Burrell is one of the only parts of Modern Family that really hits with me, so I was happy to see him win a trophy tonight. Then of course there was the win for Lupita Nyong’o. She deserves all of the awards – even the ones from the categories she isn’t nominated in – so I’m glad she got the recognition tonight. Gives me hope for the shakeout of the Academy Awards.

And then we get to the six-foot southern elephant in the room. Matthew McConaughey is stocking up on awards in a way that makes me think he might be prepping for some weird statue-driven post-apocalyptic society. Chiwetel Ejiofor’s loss is still a pretty big disappointment, but at least we can take solace in the performance art McConaughey is performing weekly at an award show near you. I mean he started talking about Neptune tonight. Neptune! This guy is a crazy person, but he’s damn entertaining.

The people I watched the broadcast with had a lot to say about tables and dresses and celebrity gossip. None of that really interested me too much. In a way, the SAG Awards are where the actors open up the most, since they’re among their own kind. This lead to some great moments, particularly when the show was in the hands of Julia Louis-Dreyfus or Emma Thompson. Unfortunately, for the most part, it was just so uninteresting. That’ll teach me to get lured in by guacamole. Never fall for the old guacamole trick you guys.

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