Did Robert Downey Jr. Make Gwyneth Paltrow More Likable?

2.27.2012

By Mike Berlin

Actress exhibits sense of humor during awards ceremony.

Lately, within, say, the past two or three years, Gwyneth Paltrow's fame has taken on a much more pervasive quality.

You can partially attribute this to a kind of Martha Stewart-like self-branding on her treacly lifestyle website, Goop, and the shamanic persona she's adopted in the media, publicly endorsing everything from agave nectar and colon cleanses to her daughter's lesbianism. (Gwyneth's bohemian proclamations have become so frequent that Sense About Science, a charity that dispells popular scientific myths, included her on 2011's Bad Science list, alongside Snooki.)

As we've documented before, Gwyneth is a polarizing figure in the Out offices. But after seeing last night's Oscars, in which she and Robert Downey Jr., my future husband, gave a reasonably funny awards presentation—funny by normal standards; by Oscar standards, it was uproarious—I may have to reexamine how I feel about her.

I'm normally in the camp of "Is She for Real?" But you know what? Gwyneth can take a joke, even if part of the joke relies on her own icy rigidity and somewhat alienating brand of Hollywood regality. In the clip below, trying to ward off RDJ-as-overzealous-documentary-producer, she pulls off a fantastic uppity foil to Hurricane Downey. Naturally, I wanted to say something snarky about Her Goopness the second he appeared onscreen. But no, my mouth wasn't able to formulate a sarcastic word. She pulled it off.

I'm not saying that I'm going to start dieting with meals that require a tablespoon of brown rice syrup or anything, but I'm going look at Gwyneth afresh. The New (Movie) Year has begun, and my resolution is to cut Gwyneth a break—so long as I eventually get to meet Blue Ivy Carter in person... and have restauranteur José Andrés stop by my flat on a whim and just, like, cook a 10-course meal for me sometime soon. Doesn't have to be today, but sometime soon. Maybe next week?

Photo: Getty Images

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