For the first time since I've been old enough to care about and/or stay up for the Oscars, I skipped this year's ceremony entirely. It wasn't any deliberate decision to boycott but rather an admission of total apathy. Even though I've often scoffed at the Oscars in years past, I've always felt connected enough to watch - if only to goof on them. This year, I didn't even care enough to do that.
On the upside, the occasion of the Oscars did inspire a couple of blog posts I that I really enjoyed from Kindertrauma and Freddy in Space, both coincidentally involving events that occurred twenty years ago.
Over at Kindertrauma, Unkle Lancifer waxed nostalgic about Silence of the Lambs' 1992 Oscar sweep while Freddy in Space posted the same year's genre's answer to the Oscars - 1992's broadcast of The Horror Hall of Fame, enthusiastically hosted by Robert Englund and billed as "an all-star tribute to terror."
Lambs' big night ought to have signaled a change in how horror was perceived by critics and studios but instead it just led - at least in the short term - to studios cashing in on the public's appetite for horror while labeling their films "psychological thrillers." Over time, Lambs' standing as a genre picture has become more widely acknowledged and studios have become less embarrassed to call their horror films horror but in '92, the perception of "horror" was closer to what was seen in '92's Horror Hall of Fame - the third and final outing for the annual ceremony that began in 1990.
Oscar hasn't been generous to the genre since '92 and as far as publicly honoring the genre goes, we now have the Scream Awards rather than the HHoF but the Scream Awards aren't exclusive to horror and also they're a little too "cool" for my taste. It's hip to be a geek now - sometimes obnoxiously so - and the Scream Awards reflect that. But in '92, being a genre fan was still regarded as dorky and The Horror Hall of Fame was, in turn, a little dorky itself - which exactly is why it's still endearing to watch.
In a way, 1992 was the best of both worlds. The genre achieved real prestige with Silence but was still off in its own private nerd corner with The Horror Hall of Fame. A year like that is worth its weight in (Oscar) gold.