Considering the type of event I’m about to tackle, I feel that in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, it’s only fair that I divulge the hate-hate relationship with awards shows I’ve developed over the past several years. Quite frankly, I just haven’t had an interest in them like I did when I was younger.
Yes, there was a time during my ill-directed innocence when I enjoyed watching the Emmys and Oscars in order to root for the only movie or TV show which I had seen that was actually nominated. Those were also the days of Billy Crystal. Ah, good ol’ Billy. It harkens back to a period of human history when awards show hosts were actually funny.
Fast forward to today, and not only have the awards shows become less entertaining, but they have multiplied in quantity at the same rate as Gizmo would if he took up synchronized swimming in the Olympics. Hence my internal laughter every time I hear the term ‘award show season’ bandied about. Is ‘season’ really an appropriate classification when a simple glimpse of the channel guide reveals five-hour block after five-hour block of celebrities patting each other on the back with pricey paperweights with custom engraving?
Be it old age or just plain cynicism, whatever originally provided that awards show awe factor has gone by the way side. I feel Doug Jones put it best during my interview with him: that most shows are the equivalent of“billionaires giving out trophies to millionaires.”
The other part of the equation has more to do with the general concept of giving trophies out for something as subjective as art. Unlike sports trophies, which award a team or individual for reaching a tangible milestone, giving a supposedly prestigious award to a creative piece of work on the perception of a few select individuals seems a bit undemocratic, does it not? (Fan voting shows not included.) After all, one man’s Star Wars Episode 1 is another man’s Gone with the Wind. (Ok, maybe I’m reaching there, but you get the point.)
Existential mumbo jumbo aside, I but my awards show biases on hold and vengtured out to the 2014 Geekie Awards held at the Avalon Theater in Hollywood, California. In spite of my not-so-pleasant feelings with regards to these types of shows, the fact that this show had the word geekie in it and was being held within a reasonable distance from the Outlaw lair, made my decision to attend a bit easier. Also, seeing that Wild Wild Podcast co-host Spunky Destructor, and the entire crew of Podthingy (nerdBFF Hot Nerd Girl, author John Mulhall and rock star Blayne Alexander) were also going may have swayed me to the “sure why not” column as well.
The biggest selling point for me though was the promotional material made it clear that this is “an award show by geeks for geeks.” As per the usual, my curiosity and the promise of free food got the best of me.
Here is a quick break down of the highlights and not-so-high-lights of the show celebrating its second year:
– The Red (Black) Carpet: For an awards show only in its sophomore outing, the list of notable celebrities was surprisingly good. With names like Doug Jones (Falling Skies, Hellboy), Curtis Armstrong & Bobby Carradine (King of the Nerds, Revenge of the Nerds), Greg Grunberg (Heroes, Lost, Alias), Randy Couture (Expendables 3, 2, 1), Manu (The Hobbit 3, Spartacus) and Levar Burton (Star Trek TNG), geek pop culture was represented in spades.
EXCLUSIVE: 2014 Red / Black Carpet Interviews by Geek Outlaw & Hot Nerd Girl
2014 Geekie Awards Show Highlights
– Love it or hate it, we live in a sponsorship-driven age of commercialization. Being that I have my MBA graduate degree—which I agree is harder to believe than the plot of the last Transformers movie—I, of all people, understand the importance of corporate sponsorships when putting on an event such as this. That said, the fact that this show felt like a three-hour commercial could have been avoided. Ads were interlaced constantly between the fresh content and award announcements, not to mention the fact that one of the performances was a rap song ad which made me want to do nothing more than boycott every product that came screeching through the microphone.
The excessive amount of time spent on ads ate into time that could have been allotted to actually showcasing the nominees for each award. The three seconds they devoted to each contender gave zero background as to what in the world these people were being considered for. Seeing as this show is all about promoting geeks and their passion-fueled projects, I felt as if this was a major area where they really dropped the ball… somewhere in the middle of Egypt.
– Remember my whole rant about hosts not being funny anymore? Well, let’s just say I’m sticking with my original sentiment on this one. To be fair, I wasn’t expecting Billy Crystal, but I was at least expecting someone that wasn’t going to make me run outside into the sweltering heat before they were able to open their mouth again. Granted, I can only imagine hosting a gig like this is far from easy and lord knows, this host delivered a better performance than I ever could have delivered. However, for those who actually read this blog, you know that isn’t saying much.
Hey, I gotta give it to him. He had heart, he had energy and he tried. If the audience’s reaction to all of the host’s attempts at humor were any indication, there were several moments where I thought I had walked into a public library for the hearing impaired.
Look, this is an awards show in its second season and as far as I’m concerned, there’s nowhere to go but up. What’s more, even when factoring in the cringe inducing moments—which were most of them—I kept reminding myself of the important element at play: this is an awards show for folks like myself who prefer their pop culture a tad more geek-centric. The Geekies has some potential, especially if the show can snag someone like Billy Crystal, or at minimum, someone with the same name. Hell, even someone with a similarly spelled name would work.
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