Critics Choice Tops Twitter as Award Shows Abound

Plus The Kardashians strum up controversy and ‘One Piece’ solves a decades-long mystery

Awards season continues its strong comeback as the Critics Choice Awards dominated Twitter for the week of March 7 to 14. The Sunday night show, which was originally supposed to air in January, but was delayed amid the spread of the COVID-19 omicron variant, earned nearly 1.5 million engagements on Variety’s Trending TV chart during its three-hour broadcast on The CW and TBS.

The show was co-hosted by Taye Diggs and Nicole Byers, and marked the continued return to in-person award shows following the Feb. 27 SAG Awards. (That broadcast topped Variety’s Trending TV chart two weeks in a row and landed in the 10th spot in this week’s roundup, proving viewers have missed chatting about red carpets and in-person awards.)

During the simultaneous CCA ceremonies in London and Los Angeles, there were several key moments that resonated with users, including a powerful speech from Halle Berry while accepting the SeeHer award, which brought Lady Gaga to tears. A self-deprecating speech from Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Billy Crystal was also a much-shared moment.

“Ted Lasso” and “Power of the Dog” walked away the night’s big winners, but best director winner Jane Campion stirred controversy during her speech in which she unexpectedly addressed Venus and Serena Williams, who were there to support “King Richard.”

“Venus and Serena, you’re such marvels,” she said. “However, you don’t play against the guys, like I have to.”

“Spencer” star Kristen Stewart making her red carpet debut with fiancée Dylan Meyer, Will Smith extending his winning streak for best actor with “King Richard,” Selena Gomez’s CCA debut, and “Belfast” star Jude Hill’s adorable acceptance speech for best young actor were just some of the other moments that catapulted show engagement across the board.

Overall, the CCAs were this week’s clear Trending winner, with runner-up “Moon Knight” at Disney Plus only pulling in an eighth of their overall tweets, with 165,000 engagements. Still, viewers chatted up the anticipated March 30 debut as Marvel Studios continued pushing artistic “phase” posters online and the show dropped a new featurette, bolstering the series up four spots from No. 6 on last week’s list.

Meanwhile Starz’s “Outlander” also climbed this week from fourth to third on the heels of a new episode on Sunday night that included a controversial birthing scene, and more steamy moments between leads Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe.

Coming in fourth this week was “One Piece” at Hulu and Netflix, thanks to the release of a new chapter that solved a decades-old mystery. The official return/identity reveal of Joy Boy sparked plenty of buzz online and helped the manga series draw more than 81,000 engagements on Twitter following the release of a new episode on March 6.

Rounding out this week’s Top 5 was “The Kardashians” on Hulu, which earned plenty of engagements following an official first-look and premiere date announcement of April 14. However, an exclusive Variety interview with the family, who inked a nine-figure deal for the upcoming series, also went viral.

“I have the best advice for women in business,” Kim said in the interview. “Get your fucking ass up and work. It seems like nobody wants to work these days.”

The controversial comments drew reactions from followers and celebrities alike, including Jameela Jamil and David Cross, resulting in more than 75,000 engagements throughout the week.

Netflix’s “Bridgerton,” which features a family inspired by the Kardashians, also earned a spot on this week’s list at No. 6. As Season 2’s March 25 debut date quickly approaches, virtual campaigns are pumping up fans who are sharing gifs, artwork and memes. A new trailer drop on March 9 also drummed up plenty of excitement.

Meanwhile, CBS’ “The Late Late Show With James Corden” cracked this week’s list at No. 7, thanks to a hyped up appearance by 5 Seconds of Summer; Netflix crime doc “Worst Roommate Ever” landed at No. 8; and the midseason return of “The Flash” came in at No. 9.