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Oscars 2019: The Best and Worst Moments From the Academy Awards

Down with hosts!

Kelly Connolly

At the 91st Academy Awards, the highs were high and the lows were somewhere in the basement. Crammed between a rocky start and a disappointing Best Picture winner, the ceremony made room for history-making wins, charming surprises and, yes, Gaga's "AHHH-AH-AHHHH" from "Shallow." For everyone else who's still trying to make sense of it all, we rounded up the best and worst moments of the 2019 Oscars. Consider it our attempt at being the helpful people we know Chris Evans would want us to be.

BEST: Not Having a Host

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Dare we say Oscars hosts just became obsolete? Despite a rocky lead-up to the ceremony, the controversial choice to go without a host wound up working out so well, we hope the trend catches on. The hostless Oscars kept things tight. Who wants to waste time on someone's forgettable running joke when we could spend it watching literally anything else?

WORST: Starting With a Queen Performance

Is this the real life (the Oscars), or is this just fantasy (the SparkNotes version of a Queen concert)? Before it hit a groove, the hostless ceremony got off to a bizarre start with a performance from original band members Brian May and Roger Taylor, joined by Adam Lambert at the mic. It was an off-brand way to begin a night that's supposed to be a celebration of movies -- and because May and Taylor were also so closely involved in the making of Best Picture nominee Bohemian Rhapsody, the hype doubled as an omen for all of our Oscar ballots. And they didn't even try to sing "Bohemian Rhapsody"!

BEST: Watching Javier Bardem React to Queen

He was really feelin' it.

BEST: Amy Poehler, Tina Fey and Maya Rudolph Host Without Hosting

Forget Queen; the night truly began when three of comedy's finest gave a lesson in how to host the Academy Awards -- not that they were hosting. But if they were hosting, they would have nailed it. Poehler, Fey and Rudolph kept the banter light and the puns flirty ("Hey Chadwick Boseman," Rudolph cracked, "Wakanda plans you got later?"), and then they made their exit -- like all the best hosts should. But they weren't hosting! But they could.

BEST: Chris Evans Helping Regina King Up the Stairs

Proving once again that he was born to be Captain America, Chris Evans won Most Supportive Chris when he helped Best Supporting Actress winner Regina King to the stage. (Evans is a legacy winner in this category; we still haven't forgotten that time he helped Betty White to the stage at the People's Choice Awards in 2015.)

BEST: Black Women Winning

This year's Oscars weren't so white, after all. It was a great night for Hollywood's melanated monas, with Regina King winning Best Supporting Actress, Ruth E. Carter for Best Costume and Hannah Beachler becoming the first African American to take home the trophy for Best Production Design. Slay.

BEST: Spike Lee's Acceptance Speech

It was a long time coming, but the academy finally did the right thing by awarding Spike Lee his first Oscar, by way of a Best Adapted Screenplay win for BlacKkKlansman. Lee's monumental win also gave us the most GIF-able moment of the night when he giddily leapt into Samuel L. Jackson's arms before delivering a powerful speech that had Jordan Peele -- and the rest of us -- sobbing.

Oscars 2019 Winners: The Complete List

Spike Lee and Samuel L. Jackson

Kevin Winter, Getty Images

WORST: None of Bohemian Rhapsody's Winners Mentioning Bryan Singer

It was expected but still inexcusable. Not one person honored for their work on Bohemian Rhapsody addressed the elephant in the room: the allegations of sexual misconduct against director Bryan Singer. Singer was fired by 20th Century Fox with less than three weeks of filming to go after reportedly disappearing from the set for days at a time, but his involvement with the movie wasn't mentioned once on the Oscars stage. In an industry that has put a megaphone to the #MeToo movement, the silence of the cast and crew grew louder as the night went on and the movie's awards piled up.

BEST: Shout-Out to Periods

Rayka Zehtabchi, one of the producers of Best Documentary Short winner Period. End of Sentence, dropped the mic with the hilarious line, "I'm not crying because of my period or anything. I can't believe a film about menstruation just won an Oscar."

BEST: Awkwafina and John Mulaney Presenting Together

Get these two a buddy comedy... or at least their own Whiskey Cavalier. Mulaney and Awkwafina were one of the night's most charming pairs, in part because they each looked so delighted to be there. "I want these people to like me to a degree that I find embarrassing," Mulaney enthused.

BEST: Keegan-Michael Key's Grand Entrance

In a HUGE power move, Key introduced Best Original Song contender "The Place Where Lost Things Go" by floating in from the ceiling Mary Poppins-style. Which reminds us that the Oscars really need to start awarding stunt work.

Where to Stream This Year's Oscar-Nominated Films

BEST: Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga Perform "Shallow"

No introduction was needed for this performance. Sure, nothing can ever recapture the feeling of the first time you heard Gaga belt, "Ahhh-AH-AHHHHHHH" in the A Star Is Born trailer, but watching the co-stars rise from their front-row seats together to the opening strains of Best Original Song "Shallow" was still magical. Did it get weird? YEAH. Will we allow it? YEAH. We'll even forgive that orange lighting.

BEST: Olivia Colman's Best Actress Acceptance Speech

A surprising (but well deserved!) Best Actress win for Olivia Colman, undisputed queen of charming speeches, led to -- get this -- another charming speech. "This is hilarious!" Colman declared, already tearful. The English actress joyfully gave hope to "any little girl who is practicing their speech on the telly" and addressed her kids, who may or may not have stayed awake late to watch: "If you're not [watching] then, kind of well done, but I sort of hope you are," she said. "This is not going to happen again." Colman, who also paid tribute to her fellow nominees, gets bonus points for the best sign-off of the night: "Lady Gaga!" And the crowd said amen.

WORST: Green Book Winning Best Picture

Who knew Spike Lee could lose out to Driving Miss Daisy twice in 30 years? Green Book's win, while predictable, still felt like a kick to the shins after what had been a pretty decent ceremony.

BEST: Laura Dern's Glasses


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Laura Dern

Kevin Winter, Getty Images