Due respect to tonight’s Golden Gobes co-hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, but I suspect (we all suspect) their opening monologue isn’t going to be as snarky or ill-mannered or snap-crackle-pop as Ricky Gervais‘ material was 12 months ago. Good comedians say the things we think but wouldn’t dare say in mixed company. Funny is dangerous taunting in a subtextual way, coming close to a defamation-of-character lawsuit, dancing on the edge of a slippery cliff.

I’ll be attending a Fox Searchight viewing party (starting just before 5 pm Pacific) and then hitting the after-parties. But first I have to crawl under a friend’s house and put up floor insulation with a staple gun.

Tonight’s big question is whether or not Les Miserables wil enjoy its “last grand hurrah” (in the words of TheWrap‘s Steve Pond) by taking the Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical award, or whether Silver Linings Playbook, the galloping momentum horse of the moment, will snatch it away.

The point of the Golden Globes “is that the show is a party, that it’s looser than the Oscars – much is made of the fact that they serve alcohol at the tables – and that its results are essentially insignificant, because even the people winning the awards know that the voters are 80-odd junket-loving correspondents for foreign newspapers and magazines who do not exactly have critical or professional credibility,” Pond writes.

“Would the Oscars put up with a host implying that their award was for sale? The Globes not only did that with Ricky Gervais, they invited him back to savage them twice more. Even the HFPA knows that it’s about looseness and fun and ratings and that TV money. It’s about creating only a paper-thin illusion that the show means something, knowing that the only folks who buy it are the ones who aren’t really paying attention.”