Greta Gerwig offered insight to Jo Koy's ill-written 'Barbie' joke at this year's Golden Globes.

Greta Gerwig Actually Thought That Golden Globes Joke Was “Right On”

She sees some merit in the Barbie zinger.

This year’s Golden Globes was pretty chaotic. While there were several celebrity interactions that made viewers smile (and become full-time lip readers), one moment fell flat: Jo Koy’s opening monologue. Throughout the night, the ceremony’s host made some questionable jokes about films that were nominated, including Barbie. His aim at the Mattel icon didn’t land well; however, it appears Greta Gerwig isn’t too upset over the quip.

During Koy’s ill-received monologue, he joked about last summer’s Barbenheimer phenomenon. He noted that Oppenheimer was “based on a 721-page Pulitzer Prize-winning book about the Manhattan Project,” while Barbie was about “a plastic doll with big boobies.”

“The key moment in Barbie is when she goes from perfect beauty to bad breath, cellulite, and flat feet. Or what casting directors call ‘character actor,’” he later said. His attempted jokes made celebrities such as Selena Gomez and Gerwig herself visibly cringe, and Koy later blamed his writers for cooking up his awkward set.

Despite her reaction in that moment, it seems Gerwig was unfazed by the dig. In her recent appearance on BBC Radio 4, the Barbie director offered some thoughtful insight to Koy’s joke.

“Well, he’s not wrong. She’s the first doll that was mass produced with breasts, so he was right on,” Gerwig said on Jan. 10. “You know, I think that so much of the project of the movie was unlikely because it is about a plastic doll. Barbie by her very construction has no character, no story — she’s there to be projected upon.”

Rich Polk/Golden Globes 2024/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Gerwig continued, adding more context to the origins of Barbie. “The insight that [Barbie creator] Ruth Handler had when she was watching her daughter play with baby dolls is she realized, ‘My daughter doesn’t want to pretend to be a mother. She wants to pretend to be a grown woman,’” she said, later adding it was rich to explore Barbie’s historic labeling as both “a villain and a hero.”

Since Barbie’s release last summer, Gerwig has been open about her fight to bring this empowering film (especially certain scenes) to life. And during the interview, she recalled how special it was to see the project — which was nominated for six Globes — take home an impressive trophy: the Cinematic and Box Office Achievement award.

“It was very wonderful and emotional to be able to take to the stage with the group that made it,” Gerwig said. “It felt very fitting. For all of us, the thing we wanted most was to connect with people and to have people share an experience in the cinemas. Even though this is a brand new award, it felt like it was the award to honor that and that was always what we wanted to do.”