The alterna-Oscars

Robert Philpot, McClatchy

What was award-worthy

Best acceptance speech

To Kim Ledger, father of Heath Ledger; Sally Bell, the actor’s mother; and Kate Ledger, the actor’s sister, all of whom accepted Heath’s best supporting actor Oscar for “The Dark Knight.” Rather than try to jerk tears from the audience, they realized that the emotion was already there and kept the speech short, subtle and classy.

Best sex change

Anne Hathaway playing Richard Nixon during the “Frost/Nixon” riff in host Hugh Jackman’s opening number.

Most mixed-bag idea

Although having past winners present acting nominations was a nice tribute to history, the presentations went on too long.

Best makeup

Ben Stiller’s Joaquin Phoenix beard-which went well with Stiller’s riff on Phoenix’s bizarre “Late Show With David Letterman” appearance.