Why the World Owes the WGA a Thank You For (Potentially) Eradicating the Awards Shows

If nothing else comes out of this god awfully mismanaged strike, it will have all have been worth it if even for just one season we can rid the airwaves of the endless, meaningless Hollywood awards shows.
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Here's the what's up from yesterday's WGA strike meeting which was attended by a smaller smattering of writers than the smattering of writers who attended our last strike meeting.

The bad news: the strike is not over. The good news: the WGA will not grant waivers to either the Golden Globe awards or the Oscar telecast! That means there would be no writers to write the programs, and a bunch of stars who would likely honor the picket lines and forgo the shows. So, there is a real good chance there will be few if any televised awards next year.

If nothing else comes out of this god awfully mismanaged strike -- and the smart money, meaning my money, says nothing will -- it will have all been worth the marching in tight little circles outside of studio lots if even for just one season we can rid the airwaves of the endless, meaningless Hollywood awards shows.

There are any number of very hard working people in Hollywood who deserve recognition. Mostly its the artisans and crafts persons -- the "below the line" workers -- whose only reward is to be pejoratively labeled "below the line" workers. I say get them all on the next thing smoking to Vegas for an all expense paid weekend of whatever.

Beyond that, true recognition of hard work has as much do to with awards shows as Christ does with the modern consumerized concept of Christmas. That is, unless the Three Wise Men were somehow behind the phrase: "90 days with no payments."

Fact is, awards shows were never really about recognizing achievement. They were a publicity ploy cooked up in the late 1920s by MGM topper Louie Mayer and his newly formed Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences which was itself, back in the day, nothing but a front organization to discourage unionizing.

In the decades since, the Oscars in particular and awards shows in general, have metastasized into personality cults nexused around red carpet arrivals: big stars wearing designer clothes they were given for free 'cause God knows it's hard to shop well when you're only earning tens of millions of dollars a picture. Awards shows have devolved into self-parodies -- liberals in limos, corny insider jokes delivered by the hosts among bad teleprompter reading from the some of the best thespians on the planet. It's gushing, teary acceptances speech, sometimes peppered with a variety of politics broken up by the lamest production numbers three hours running time will allow. It's some of the most beautiful, most admired people alive who seem desperate to finally get that hug they were denied back when they were seven. In the immortal words of Sally Fields: "you like me, right now, you like me." Eve Harrington could not have said it more tragically.

So, for one season at least, let's end the cycle of self-indulgence and the fawning and the jillion "for your consideration" ads for movies that barely deserve consideration on Netflix. Let's reduce our both our carbon footprint and our ego emission and NOT gather before the limelight to self-congratulate. Instead, like the rest of America, let's be quietly satisfied with a good year's work.

Read more strike coverage on the Huffington Post's writers' strike page.