The 2024 Golden Globes monologue was bad, but sexism, misogyny, and falling flat left a black eye on Jo Koy’s career overnight.
If you’ve been caught up with the news, then you probably know that the 2024 Golden Globes were just held. But in a night of historic wins and firsts for the Asian community, one moment has left a sour taste in many, and that was the opening monologue of host Jo Koy. Given his Filipino heritage, there was some exctiment in certain corners of the internet seeing Filipino representation on the big stage. But the moment the show started, it quickly proved that Jo Koy wasn’t going to land the plane smoothly.
In an attempt to bring back the glitz to the 81st annual Golden Globes, the awards show host faced a tough crowd with his last-minute monologue that set a rather cringe-worthy tone for the night. What was supposed to be a comeback for the Globes, which faced a crisis for a lack of representation in the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (the body that hosts the show), turned into a stumble, thanks to a string of uncomfortable jokes that Jo Koy made.
Traditionally a stage for laughter and celebration, the Golden Globes took an uncomfortable turn as his attempt at humor not only fell flat in its comedic execution but also bumped right into the pitfalls of sexism and misogyny. From targeting Meryl Streep and Taylor Swift, here’s how the Fil-Am stand-up comedian ran into all sorts of potholes.
Missing the Message of the Barbie Movie—Big Time
The recent remarks made by the comedian at the event not only fell flat but also managed to miss the entire essence of the Barbie movie, leaving a sour taste among attendees. With an ill-fated attempt at humor, he reduced a monumental project like Oppenheimer to a dismissive punchline while belittling the Barbie movie solely based on its origin from a plastic doll.
“Oppenheimer is based on a 721-page Pulitzer Prize-winning book about the Manhattan Project, and Barbie is on a plastic doll with big boobies,” he said.
we’re not talking about the surface level feminism discourse it was about the disgusting joke jo koy made and only a movie like barbie which is catered to and for women would get mocked like this pic.twitter.com/QRmBV9kkXf— T£RR¥ M@R¥ (@indiandoIl) January 8, 2024
The comedian’s offensive comments hit hard, and you could see it plain as day on Greta Gerwig’s face. She’s the brain behind the Barbie movie, and her disappointment was written all over her expression. It wasn’t just her—everyone in the audience seemed uncomfortable, from the cringes on the faces of big shots like Ayo Edebiri, Emma Stone, Helen Mirren and Selena Gomez.
And yet, Jo Koy kept pushing with tasteless jokes, taking shots at Ryan Gosling’s character. “I don’t want you guys to think that I’m a creep, It was kind of weird being attracted to a plastic doll, just something about your eyes, Ryan…it’s not all about you Margot,” he said.
As he continued, it became even more obvious how insensitive his remarks were. He completely missed what the Barbie movie was all about, showing a total lack of understanding and respect for the movie’s message and themes.
What’s the Big Difference Between the Golden Globes and NFL?
Jo Koy’s jokes during the opening monologue failed to hit the mark, and as the show progressed, another attempt at comedy, including a thinly veiled jab at Taylor Swift, only added to the discomfort. Drawing a comparison between the Golden Globes and the NFL, Jo Koy joked about the camera’s focus, suggesting fewer shots of Swift at the awards: “The big difference between the Golden Globes and the NFL? At the Golden Globes, we have fewer camera shots of Taylor Swift.”
You know what’s funny? The camera cut to Taylor Swift, who responded with a deadpan expression, pursed lips, and a casual sip of her wine, visibly unamused by the attempt at humor. And no, despite what some may say, she wasn’t overreacting. Jo Koy’s repeated attempts to land jokes at the expense of others’ discomfort demonstrated a lack of understanding of the room, contributing to a growing sense of unease among both attendees and everyone else watching the show. It’s a joke Jo Koy himself admitted was not good.
You Can’t Complain for an Audience That Doesn’t Find You Funny
Amid a barrage of less-than-funny jokes at the Golden Globes, Jo Koy’s comedic routine took an unexpected nosedive when he shifted from humor to defensiveness. Rather than attempting to salvage the situation, Jo Koy resorted to deflecting blame, pointing fingers at his writers and the time constraints he faced preparing for the show. In an unscripted outburst, he defensively fired back, saying, “Yo, I got the gig 10 days ago, you want a perfect monologue?… Slow down. I wrote some of these, and they’re the ones you’re laughing at.”
#GoldenGlobes host Jo Koy is sadly, bombing. And the crowd is SILENT🤐— Georgia Clelland (@GeorgiClelland) January 8, 2024
He went off-script after one of his jokes bombed: “I got the gig 10 days ago! You want a perfect monologue? Yo, shut up. I wrote some of these, and they’re the ones you’re laughing at.” #GoldenGlobes2024 pic.twitter.com/R3LQaIRpht
In the world of comedy, how a comedian responds to his humor’s failure can be just as pivotal as the presentation itself. Jo Koy’s defensiveness highlighted a clear disconnect between his material and the audience. It was also not a good look on him how he but the writers under the bus when Hollywood just came from the monumental writer’s strike that saw members of the Writers Guild of America (WGA) fight for better rights.
It serves as a stark reminder of humor’s weight and influence—its delivery and its role in shaping societal perceptions. With an urgent call for a more thoughtful, inclusive, and genuinely engaging approach to comedy, it’s time to distance ourselves from material that doesn’t align with the progress our society has made. This moment presents an opportunity to reevaluate comedic narratives, aiming for humor that uplifts without causing discomfort or division. Jo Koy failed to read the room, and it horribly showed.