1. The Front-Runners: Tina Fey and Amy Poehler
They weren’t present last night, but their shadow hung over the whole event. In their Golden Globes stint this year, Fey and Pohler pretty much showed the world how hosting is done. Every time MacFarlane took a wrong step, you couldn’t help but think how much better Tina and Amy would have been. When the Academy first sits down to consider next year’s show, their top agenda item will surely be whether or not they can lure this duo away from the Globes.
2. The Titan: Meryl Streep
Why not just have the Queen of Hollywood preside over it all? She’s personable and quirky, despite the grandeur of being entertainment’s official Great Actress for decades now, and there is no one who doesn’t love Meryl. If nothing else, no critic would have the guts to pan her if a couple jokes fell flat.
3. Going Deep: Daniel Day Lewis
If Oscar were looking for a different kind of show, one that’s more introspective, thoughtful…slower…moving, having Daniel Day-Lewis look America straight in the eye and hypnotize us into sitting down and just…considering…what…it’s all about…might just be the national moment of meditation this country needs. As he showed last night, he’s got the charm and the dignity to spare. So why not have him take us on a very cerebral voyage?
4. Night of 1,000 Quirks: Jennifer Lawrence
The world cannot get enough of Jennifer Lawrence, so let’s give them more. Her oddball moments, unguarded asides, and bizarre reaction faces supply enough charm to light up a thousand internets. A whole night of Jennifer Lawrence at the podium could be the most epic thing that ever happened to Hollywood.
5. Go Really Young: Quvenzhané Wallis
Oscar has been fighting a losing battle to lure Gen Y for a decade now. So why not cut their losses on the millennials and go straight to Gen Z? A night of Quvenzhané showing the winners her puppy purse would warm the hearts of any movie fan.
6. The Gonzo Option: Jack Nicholson
There is no one more fascinating to watch than America’s most gleefully unhinged A-lister. Let Jack get cozy with a bottle of bourbon and some friends a couple hours before the show, then send him on stage, and we will be ready to celebrate Hollywood’s Golden Age in style.
7. Dancing with the Nominees: Charlize Theron and Channing Tatum
America has gone dance crazy over the past decade. So how about an all-dancing show, where every presenter and every winner has to tap their way through their time? Charlize and Channing showed last night that they can hold their own in the basic moves, so let them lead the rest of Hollywood through a nightlong boogie.
8. Emo Oscars: Kristen Stewart
No one can bring things down a few hundred notches like the understated Twilight star, and maybe that’s what the Oscars needs. After 85 years of treating the show like a big fiesta, maybe it’s time to make it more of a trance lounge. Let’s chill out, people, and just kinda, you know, hang out with some nominees. Just, kinda, check in and see what’s going on.