Athletes praising Jesus on television are as ubiquitous as Geico commercials, so why was best actor Matthew McConaughey’s God-loving acceptance speech Sunday night so uncomfortable?

Perhaps it’s because we’re so frequently told that Hollywood is the domain of secular hedonists. To the extent that the entertainment industry is religious, it’s in the Scientology vein. To have McConaughey proclaim “first off I want to thank God, ’cause that’s who I look up to,” is somehow a bit jarring.

But what made the speech truly strange, as opposed to merely unexpected, was the actor’s praise not of the almighty, but of himself. Now, you have to be a bit self-involved to succeed in show business, but you don’t need to be so public about it. McConaughey told the billion or so viewers Sunday night that “my hero,” the person he most aspires to be, is his future self. It’s a mystical sort of narcissism that you kind of need to see to understand and/or believe.

But hey, at least we got a signature, “awright, awright, awright” out of the deal. And man does he look good for a 44-year-old.

— Posted by Peter Z. Scheer

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig