The Oscars hosting gig is, as The Hollywood Reporter notes, one of the toughest in showbusiness. But while that publication praised Seth MacFarlane's performance, it was pretty much a lone voice among the reviews of last night's Academy Awards host.
Deadline Hollywoods' Nikki Finke led the pack, calling the "lame" and "self-indulgent" MacFarlane "The Worst Oscar Host Ever. I can’t think of anyone who even comes close."
"Even the Academy Awards audience is now embarrassed for Seth," she 'live snarked'. "That half-smile plastered on George Clooney’s face is hiding what he’s really thinking: that MacFarlane needs to walk off the stage for the good of the show now. It’s like all the air has been sucked out of the Oscars. What a disaster."
USA Today's Robert Bianco also accused MacFarlane of being "awash with self-indulgence", saying that he "used the awards to audition for his own variety show".
And while he admitted that the 'Family Guy' creator "threw everything he had at it... radiated charm, if not cool" and "did manage to land a fair number of [his jokes]," Bianco noted that: "What MacFarlane seemed to forget was that the job at hand involved more than just performing... One longed for him to drop the meta-jokes about the fear that he'd be an inappropriate host and get on with the job of actually hosting."
The Wrap, meanwhile, compared MacFarlane - unfavourably - with Golden Globes hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.
"The worst thing I can say about this year's Oscar opening? This was originally supposed to be a list of Seth MacFarlane's best jokes," said The Wrap in a review headlined 'Oh Wow, This Is a Mess'. "He delivered the Oscars producers pretty much exactly what they signed up for, because it felt an awfully lot like a 'Family Guy' episode - a few jokes, some "zany" pop culture references, some music, and a gay-panic joke."
Over on The Guardian's live blog, critic Xan Brooks noted that MacFarlane started off "jumpy, nervous, almost apologetic, and takes a few moments to hit his stride." And despite a few successful jokes, Brooks writes, "a crack about Rihanna and Chris Brown prompts a mass intake of breath and another one about Mel Gibson sparks a similar response".
MacFarlane's 'edgy' one-liners didn't impress Twitter, either - with tweeters accusing the host of being sexist, flat, cringeworthy and narcissistic.
Still, never mind, Seth. There was one tweeter who loved you. And guess who that was?