The mania surrounding the Oscars seems to have died down at last. The fallout has finally, well, fallen. Argo’s Best Picture win vindicated Ben Affleck after his Best Director snub. The dust finally settled after The Onion’s Twitter debacle. Even the last of the “Seth MacFarlane is Sexist/Racist/Homophobic” thinkpieces has been thunkpieced (until next time he appears in non-animated form). All of the drama and fanfare of the past few weeks has resolved itself…all except one crucial subplot, a true conflict for the ages: Anne Hathaway vs. Jennifer Lawrence.
Both women came away from last Sunday’s Academy Award ceremony as winners. Hathaway took home the Best Supporting Actress trophy for her portrayal of Fantine, the original hooker with a heart du or in Les Miserables. Not to be outdone, Lawrence won Best Actress for her performance as Tiffany, the Manic (Depressive) Townie Dream Girl in Silver Linings Playbook. J-Law (because we’re still doing those nicknames ten years later) accepted her award with poise and dignity even after she fell up the stairs. Hathaway received her Oscar with the dewy-eyed rapture of a child who just received a pony for her birthday, only the pony was actually two tiny ponies dressed as one pony. Though each justifiably won the award for which she was nominated, the two are, of course in competition with each other.
Obviously, any two talented actresses, especially if they are age thirty or younger, must be studied and criticized in direct contrast to one another. It’s the American way. It’s Darwinism. Only the strong survive, and you’ve got to be built Ford tough to make it in this industry. So, like decent, evolved humans, we have put these two in the crucible of public opinion and heated them to the point of sobbing. Unfortunately, Anne Hathaway cracked, murmuring: “It came true,” to her golden statue like some kind of monster. On the other hand, Jennifer Lawrence was forged into an auburn-haired goddess, flipping two middle fingers at the press, like we always love when people do. But it’s not enough! Anne Hathaway and Jennifer Lawrence must fight to the death.
It’s the only way. We can’t continue to have two young Oscar-winning actresses with slightly divergent personalities running amok in Hollywood. It’s astonishing that their presence together at the Academy Awards didn’t cause a rupture in the space-time continuum, collapsing the past, future, and present inward on each other like some kind of Vonnegutian (or McFlyian) nightmare.
Back to the matter at hand. The death match will take be pay per view, obviously. America will insist that the brawl occur in an outdoor arena with provisions and hazards dropped at calculated intervals from the sky. That would, of course, result in maximum entertainment. Picture Lawrence’ face, covered in mud, scrunched up in determination, like when she was teaching Bradley Cooper how to dance. Meanwhile, Hathaway would sob ice cube sized tears while fortifying her crude lean-to like a resolute protagonist in a Gary Paulsen novel.
But no. That is not to be. While the similarity to The Hunger Games would provide the most potential drama and thrill (those folks knew what they were doing when it came to fights to the death), it would give Jennifer Lawrence an unfair advantage given her simulated experience fighting for her life under similar circumstances. It would be equally inequitable to set the contest in an arena based on the streets of pre-revolutionary France. We can’t give either competitor the upper hand.
Why not? Well, even though the citizens of the United States are clamoring for the blood of Anne Hathaway, we must make sure we are staging a fight to the death and not an execution. That’s how democracy works. So even though A-Hath (Could there be a worse nickname? Maybe, “Lil’ Mussolini,” but only barely) reminds us of that weepy girl from our theater class who filled notebook after notebook with lyrics from Rent and for sure deserves to die, it would be unconstitutional to just set her up failure without a fair trial or mortal contest of strength and craftiness on equal footing with an opponent.
No, the competition will take place on the stage of the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, CA, where the Oscars are held. Billy Crystal in drag will perform a medley of songs parodying the films of both actresses to ease the viewers into idea of watching something horrific. Perez Hilton and Meryl Streep will announce the action in real time. During breaks in the action, Seth MacFarlane will return to make snarky comments about the competitors’ bodies (“I’d be miserables too if I had those thighs.” “This is more like Silver Linings Jewbook. Show business, am I right?) Afterwards, Kelly Clarkson will lip sync the national anthem, and the criticism of her inauthentic performance will allow the victor of the death match time to salve her wounds before delivering an acceptance speech. It’s the only way for us to resolve this very essential conflict.
And if the winner says: “It came true,” we make her fight Adele the following week.
Because we just can’t have that, now can we?