As anticipation built ahead of awards season, everyone was asking themselves how the Golden Globes would fare without the rapier wit of three-time presenter Ricky Gervais. Quite well seems to be the answer to that question.
Comedy duo Tina Fey and Amy Poehler – known for their stints in box office sensation Mean Girls and hit American show Saturday Night Live – held the fort at this year's ceremony, and did their predecessor proud with some acerbic jibes of their own.
As the A-list braced themselves, the ladies took aim at Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow, singer Taylor Swift and Les Miserables' Anne Hathaway – who also inspired Sacha Baron Cohen's comedy.
Tina joked about Taylor's thriving love life, saying: "You know what, Taylor Swift, you stay away from Michael J. Fox's son," a reference to Sam Michael Fox, who was this year's Mr. Golden Globe. The funny woman concluded the country belle – who recently split with Harry Styles – just "needs some 'me' time to learn about herself".
Joining Taylor was Anne Hathaway who was told: "You gave a stunning performance in Les Miserables. I have not seen someone so totally alone and abandoned like that since you were on stage with James Franco at the Oscars."
Anne's co-star Sacha Baron Cohen also made fun of her wardrobe malfunction of late 2012, but when the cameras panned out to the audience, Anne seemed to be taking the joke on the chin and was seen giggling alongside her husband Adam Shulman.
Next up was Kathryn Bigelow, whose CIA spy thriller about the war on terror snared Jessica Chastain a nod for Best Actress. Kathryn was previously married to Titanic and Avatar director James Cameron, and her relationship with her ex-husband captured the imagination.
Speaking of Zero Dark Thirty, Amy said: "I haven't really been following the controversy, but when it comes to torture, I trust the lady who spent three years married to James Cameron."
Tina and Amy's best Golden Globes quips
- Amy: "We have no intention of being edgy or offensive tonight because as Ricky Gervais found out the hard way, when you run afoul of the Hollywood Foreign Press, they make you host this show two more times."
- Tina to Girls creator Lena Dunham: "If they're forcing you to do all that nudity, just tell us. Give us a signal and we'll call child services for you."
- Tina: "You know what Taylor Swift, you stay away from Michael J. Fox's son!"
- Amy on Bill Clinton: "Wow, what an exciting special guest! That was Hillary Clinton's husband!"
- Amy: "Only at the Golden Globes do the beautiful people of film rub shoulders with the rat-faced people of television."
- Tina on Anne Hathaway's performance in Les Miserables: "I have not seen someone so totally alone and abandoned since you were on stage with James Franco at the Oscars."
- Amy: Meryl Streep is not here tonight. She has the flu - and I hear she's amazing in it."