Oh, dear lord. Deadline is confirming reports that Seth MacFarlance, Family Guy creator turned oddly tanned celebrity, has been asked to host next year's Oscars ceremony. Yes, they want more of that.
MacFarlane of course hosted this year's ceremony, an obnoxious evening of sexist jokes and other bad humor. Well, depending on whom you ask, anyway. He was certainly a hit with some people, giving the broadcast a big ratings boost, especially in the all-important 18-49 demographic. And speaking demographically, MacFarlane is popular with men who probably wouldn't be watching the Oscars already, meaning he brings in a whole new crowd to advertise to. So it makes sense that the Academy producers would want to have him back, even if he was a little "controversial." Controversial is good for ratings!
But Seth MacFarlane isn't actually controversial; he's just kind of an ass. And not in a funny way. He's sort of the progenitor of the snide, kinda good-looking comedy guy who acts like a jerk and accuses his detractors of being humorless or worse whenever a joke offends or angers them. It's a type embodied by the Daniel Toshes and Anthony Jeselniks of the world. And, really, there's nothing controversial about that — nothing is being stirred up that's worth talking about, it's just prickishness delivered with a cocky smirk. And some people, like the Oscars producers, mistake that for something edgy and daring. Thus they have invited MacFarlane back to do more of the same ugly routine. Or, you know, they do recognize it but don't really care. Ratings are ratings.
Who knows if he'll actually do it. In the days after this year's ceremony, MacFarlane insisted he wouldn't host again. Maybe they'll lure him back by saying he can do more songs or something? He sure does love showing us that he can sing. And the Oscars is a mighty big stage for doing just that. Deadline suggests that one thing keeping him from doing the gig is his busy schedule, which includes a new movie that he's directing and starring in (he cast Amanda Seyfried and Charlize Theron to be his love interests, reasonably enough), but I'd imagine that if he really wants to do it, he'll find the time. So we might be dealing with that mess all over again next February. Of course we'll watch the Oscars no matter what, MacFarlane or not, but it doesn't mean we have to like it.