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Arts and Entertainment

The 2015 Oscars: The Best And Worst Moments

Neil Patrick Harris and Anna Kendrick kick off the 87th Annual Academy Awards. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
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Here's a round-up of what went down at the Oscars for those of you who were sane enough to not tune in for the marathon awards show. There weren't really too many upsets among the winners, but the live show had its moments.

WORST: It's our God-given right as Angelenos to complain about precipitation, even during a drought, even when Queen Elsa is terrorizing the East Coast. It rained like twice last year, did it have to rain on the night our A-listers look their best?

BEST: But at least Jared Leto rocked his umbrella:

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BEST: This was a strong night for acceptance speeches.

Patricia Arquette roused the crowd with a call for equal pay for women. Yes, the pay gap affects ladies making millions, too. Meryl Streep and J. Lo heartily approved (though her speechifying went off the rails in the press room):

The Imitation Game screenwriter Graham Moore, who won an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay, used his win as an opportunity to tell his story: "I tried to commit suicide at 16 and now I'm standing here. I would like for this moment to be for that kid out there who feels like she doesn’t fit in anywhere. You do. Stay weird. Stay different, and then when it's your turn and you are standing on this stage please pass the same message along."

Best Supporting Actor JK Simmons had a humbler message: call (don't text!) your mom.

Pawel Pawlikowski, the director for Best Foreign Film Ida, wins for powering through the Oscars orchestra to tell his drunk crew in Poland to keep drinking:

WORST: So how was Neil Patrick Harris' hosting?


David Oyelowo wasn't quite sold on this bit (via Giphy)
Okay, it wasn't the worst hosting job but hopes were high, and many of the jokes fell flat. There was a running gag that involved NPH putting all his predictions for the show in a locked box that he promised not to open at the end (most jokes are ruined in the explaining—this isn't one of those jokes). He asked Octavia Spencer to watch the box, and he periodically checked in with her to make sure no one had tampered with the box.

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Octavia making the most of it (via Giphy)
Even she was over it by the night's end. The payoff? Hardly worth explaining.

BEST: John Legend and Common teamed up for a performance of "Glory" that left the crowd misty-eyed:

The duo won and they used their acceptance speech to highlight issues that haven't been resolved since Martin Luther King, Jr.'s day. Legend said, "We live in the most incarcerated country in the world. There are more black men under correctional control today than there were under slavery in 1850."

WORST: John Travolta was invading personal space left and right (which seems especially creepy given all the allegations over his massage table antics). Here he is creeping up behind an unsuspecting Scarlett Johansson, puckering up and giving her a kiss on the cheek:

Travolta was supposed to redeem himself after botching Idina Menzel's name last year. Together the pair presented the Best Song, and Menzel introduced him with his Travoltified name Glom Gozingo. But Travolta creeped us out again by not, well, letting go of Menzel's face:


Poor Menzel (via Giphy)
On a totally unrelated note, I think it's fair to bring back the mani-cam if red carpet reporters can at least ask Travolta who designed his hair.

WORST: Lady Gaga showed up wearing gloves that said "ready to dispose a dead body" more than "red-carpet ready." That's about par for the course for Gaga.


Lady Gaga's gloves (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
BEST: Gaga then proceeded to totally weird everyone out by belting out a blissfully gimmick-free medley from the "Sound of Music" like a musical theater vet. Even Dame Julie Andrews herself gave the Lady her blessing:

WORST: Sean Penn tried to get cute when he announced the Best Picture. Before announcing that Birdman directed by Mexican national Alejandro G. Iñárritu was the Academy's favorite, he joked "Who gave this son of a bitch his green card?" In the press room, Iñárritu said he found the joke "hilarious" and explained that Penn has been making jokes like that since they worked together on 21 Grams in 2003. But the joke sounded racist, fell flat and earned Penn a lashing on Twitter with the hashtag #Penndejo.

BEST: Alejandro G. Iñárritu was totally charming in his acceptance speech and offered up this quote: "Fear is the condom of life. It doesn't allow you to enjoy things." I hope this becomes an inspirational meme on Facebook.

WORST: Where was Joan Rivers during the In Memoriam segment? The Academy released a statement explaining that they hadn't forgotten her—they had just relegated her to a website no one reads, "Joan Rivers is among the many worthy artists and filmmakers we were unfortunately unable to feature in the In Memoriam segment of this year's Oscar show. She is, however, included in our In Memoriam gallery on"

If only Joan were here to respond! This gif will have to suffice:


Joan responds (via Giphy)
BEST: The snubbed Lego Movie made it into the show in the best possible way: with a frenetic performance of "Everything Is Awesome." And they answered age-old question: What do you get the woman who has everything? A LEGO OSCAR. Look at Oprah's face!


Oprah wins! (via Giphy)