Oscar Ratings Down, Critics Slam It

Critics have panned last night’s 83rd Academy Awards broadcast with James Franco’s distant and borderline stoned performance in particular singled out as a major reason for the problems. Co-host Anne Hathaway was complimented for putting in an effort, a few thought too much so, to try and balance out Franco’s lethargy.

Yet combined with a bloated middle section, comedic skits and introductions that didn’t work, and an awards race that was largely predictable over a month ago, the ceremony is already going down as one of the legendarily bad ones akin to David Letterman’s disastrous attempt in the 90’s.

In overnight ratings the show drew a 24.6 household rating/37 share, down 7% from last year’s 26.5 rating and reversing a ratings upswing over the past two years for the awards show after its all time low in 2008. The expected bump from the younger hosts didn’t pan out with the ad-targeted 18-49 demographic on par with last year’s 14.5 rating,

Meanwhile Jimmy Kimmel’s post-Oscar show featured two celebrity-led skits – the first with Tom Hanks doing a “Toddlers & Tiaras” segment. The other was a more star-studded gym infomercial spoof which included the likes of Jessica Biel, Jessica Alba, Scarlett Johansson, Emily Blunt, Minka Kelly, Eva Longoria, Kelly Ripa, Sofia Vergara and even Lindsay Lohan.