Golden Globes Host Jo Koy Sparks Fierce Backlash: ‘Disaster’

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Comedian Jo Koy defended his lackluster opening monologue during his debut as host of the 81st Golden Globes.

Koy was panned by many watching the Hollywood awards ceremony at home, and his jokes also fell flat with the live audience of celebrities and nominees in attendance.

The Globes kick off the awards season in Hollywood and honor the best of movies and television from the previous year.

Jo Koy hosts the 81st Golden Globe Awards on January 7, 2024 in Beverly Hills, California. He has been criticized for his performance hosting the awards.
Rich Polk/Getty Images North America

During his monologue, Koy took aim at some of the celebrities in the room, including an unimpressed Taylor Swift.

When he realized his jokes weren’t landing, he blamed his writers and the fact he was a relatively last-minute choice for the gig.

“Yo, I got the gig 10 days ago, you want a perfect monologue? Yo, shut up,” Koy said to the audience. “Slow down, I wrote some of these and they’re the ones you’re laughing at.”

NPR media analyst Eric Deggans defended Koy on X, formerly Twitter.

“Jo Koy is a great comic, but i’m not sure he’s used to working a showbiz crowd hosting the #GoldenGlobes,” he wrote.

“His monologue wasn’t biting enough but also was a little too biting in the same moment. Tougher gig than it looks.”

But others were not so forgiving including one who wrote: “Watching this is like witnessing an accident in slow motion. This is truly awful.”

New York Times media reporter Nicole Sperling, who was seemingly in attendance at the show, added: “Wowee. Never seen an audience rebel against an emcee so quickly. One prominent director just couldn’t keep his opinion quiet. ‘They all showed up. They are all here and this is what they give us? This is a disaster’.”

Another commented: “The awkward silence at Jo Koy’s Barbie jokes… He told smart jokes about the other nominees and all he had about Barbie was ‘big boobs’.”

Megastar Selena Gomez was seen bowing her head during Koy’s jokes about Barbie which was the highest grossing film of 2023 and also won the Golden Globe for Cinematic and Box Office Achievement.

In comparing Barbie to fellow nominee Oppenheimer, Koy said: “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.”

Koy also joked that the “key moment” in Barbie was when the famous doll experienced “bad breath, cellulite, and flat feet, or what casting directors call ‘character actor.'”

A viral post featuring the Barbie cast and creator’s unenthusiastic reactions to Koy’s jokes earned 1.7 million views on X.

Koy also talked about Barry Keoghan’s penis, asking him “where is it seated” after the actor appeared naked in the movie Saltburn. Koy then jokingly answered his own question by saying he “found it” on Bradley Cooper’s nose, referring to the controversial prosthetic the actor-director wore to portray Leonard Bernstein in Maestro.

Another joke about Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon drew groans from the audience in the room. “The one thing I learned about that movie is that white people stole everything … you took the land, you took the oil, you took the premise of the movie.” At hearing the crowd’s reaction, Koy defended the joke: “What, that was your premise? That’s hilarious, I don’t care—the room is really white. The room’s like, ‘yeah, we did take it, and?'”

“Jo Koy finding out today that in 2024 you can’t just get by on ‘white people amirite’ and actually need to have some sauce,” one X user wrote in response.

Some X users joked that Koy’s performance was enough to get him “canceled.”

“I hope Jo Koy never gets a job again for that Barbie joke. Absolutely distasteful and shows that he doesn’t really care about the films being awarded,” wrote one.

“In an especially cringey night, Twitter really did get that dude Jo Koy canceled. He got maybe 2 minutes of screen time in the second half of the telecast,” one viewer observed.

“Jo Koy has been canceled, and it’s only been 8 days since the new year,” another X user joked.

“Was Jo Koy fired mid-broadcast?” Sam Sanders wrote in a viral post that earned 205 thousand views.

Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer and HBO’s Succession were big winners at the 2024 Golden Globes.

Check out the full list of Golden Globes 2024 winners.