Hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley made it clear during the 48th CMA Awards that no topics were off limits, but maybe some of them should have been. The duo decided to shoot low with the comedy in their opening monologue, joking about hilarious topics like Ebola.
The bad form comedy started with Paisley and Underwood singing a parody of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene,” called “Quarantine,” about the Maine nurse who defied an Ebola quarantine order to go for a bike ride. If there’s anything an awards show audiences love, it’s outbreak humor.
The jokes didn’t end there, though. The hosts also took a shot at Renee Zellweger by saying they would never poke fun at the actress.
“In times like these, we need to laugh. And nothing is off limits tonight. Although we refuse to joke about Renee Zellweger,” Underwood says. Paisley quips, “Yeah, first of all. She could be here.” Underwood: “I mean, how would we know.”
For those out there who missed the news, Zellweger recently made headlines for appearing on a red carpet looking different. Obviously that’s the perfect fodder for Paisley to make the joke, “She’s a master of disguise!”
Just to keep things classy, the two then did a song about the recent celebrity nude photo leaks, because of course they did. Add in a series of very played-out jokes about Taylor Swift no longer being a country singer — come on, that was so 2012 — and you’ve got yourself a monologue that missed the mark by a mile. Better luck next time, Paisley and Underwood.