Many of us believed that that Banshees of Inisherin costar Kerry Condon was an Oscar shoo-in for Best Supporting Actress. She was and is the heart and soul of Martin McDonagh‘s metaphorical dysfunction drama — no one disputes this. But then the Golden Globes gave their Best Supporting Actress prize to Wakanda Forever‘s Angela Bassett as (be honest) a make-up gesture for the HFPA’s racist history in terms of membership. And then last night the insufferably woke Critics Choice voters went for Bassett also.
So now Academy voters undoubtedly FEEL OBLIGED to award Bassett also. If they give their Best Supporting Actress Oscar to Condon instead Twitter may detect a very slight after-aroma of racism, so they have to give it Bassett…even though we all agree that her banal, quarter-of-an-inch-deep Wakanda performance doesn’t deliver a fraction of the soul and substance that Condon provided.
Bassett is 64 and has been plugging away since the early ’90s, so her supporters are calling it a career tribute award now. It’s a rigged game. Life is unfair. The actress who gave the best supporting performance probably won’t win.
Friendo: You’re not allowed to criticize the idea of Angela Bassett winning an Oscar for a histrionic performance in a stupid superhero flick. I was thinking about saying “it’s great Bassett is finally winning an award but too bad it’s in a superhero movie”, but then I realized I’d get attacked for it. You can’t attack religious symbols.
HE: As I said last night, Sunday night’s Critics Choice awards show felt like some kind of Twilight Zone experience. Voting the woke party line (sacralization of race, gender, sexuality plus focusing on emotional core issues over an instance of morbid self-destructive obesity) means NOTHING in this context. It’s Maoism.
Friendo: Wokeism is a cult, that’s for sure. Look at what Cate Blanchett said last night…”the patriarchal notion of competition for a top award” or whatever she said.
HE: I thought Cate was more of a circumspect type.
Friendo: I just mean that actresses like Blanchett at this point are stuck between a rock and a hard place. They feel obliged to suggest they don’t want to win if they’re already at the top and are white. They feel a bit guilty so they’re saying ‘let’s get rid of the awards…everybody should get a certificate of merit.’ They’re almost there now. Merit has gone out the window.
HE: Oh, I see. Cate feels obliged to project a certain blithe spirit…a vague sense of guilt about this, and so she’s saying “I don’t need to win”. She’s not hungry for it, clearly. It’s unseemly to project hunger or ambition. Maybe this means Michelle Yeoh will take the Oscar now.
Friendo: She felt guilty about the possibility of beating Michelle Yeoh at her moment of near-triumph, and so rather than beating a woman of color with a decades-long narrative she probably doesn’t want to win.
HE: That’s what she was saying — you’re right. From a racial or tribal perspective, white artists defeating artists of color is not a good look.
HE: Under our current Maoism defeating a person of color flirts with a morally unsavory narrative.
Friendo: Be honest — does anyone honestly think Angela Bassett should win for that Wakanda performance role? Equity mindsets mean that artists of color can never really rise on their own merit. Awards have to be gifted to them by whites.
HE: It’s totally ridiculous that Bassett has beaten Kerry Condon twice so far…c’mon!
Friendo: No intelligent human could argue even half-heartedly that Bassett’s performance is superior to Condon’s.