'Not Eva Mendes': The Best Joke of the Golden Globes

Editor’s Note: This article previously appeared in a different format as part of The Atlantic’s Notes section, retired in 2021.

In December, when the 2016 Golden Globes nominees were announced, the awards’ official Twitter account made an extremely unfortunate mistake. “.@HereIsGina is kicking off the @goldenglobes nominations announcements,” the account tweeted, chirpily, sharing a photo of Globes presenters Chloe Grace Moretz, Angela Bassett, Dennis Quaid … and America Ferrera. The America Ferrera who starred in Ugly Betty, who currently stars in Superstore, and who is very much not @HereIsGina’s Gina Rodriguez.

Oooof. And the account followed that up with another reference to Rodriguez, star of Jane the Virgin and herself the winner of a 2015 Golden Globe (for Best Actress—Television Series Musical or Comedy). Finally realizing the mistake—which is to say, that America Ferrera is not in fact Gina Rodriguez—it deleted the tweets and replaced them with tweets referencing Ferrera.

It was a telling moment, though—a reminder of the casual racism that, despite Hollywood’s professions of diversity, remains rampant in the industry. And it was one that Ferrera and her co-presenter, Eva Longoria, poked fun at on the Globes stage as they presented the award for Best Actor in a TV Drama. After show host Ricky Gervais introduced them (“Eva Longoria and America Ferrera aren’t just beautiful actresses, they’re also two people who your future president, Donald Trump, can’t wait to deport”), the pair strode onto the stage. They grinned.

“Yes, hi, I’m Eva Longoria—not Eva Mendes,” Longoria quipped.

“And, hi, I’m America Ferrera, not Gina Rodriguez.”

The camera panned to Rodriguez, who laughed and shook her head knowingly.

Longoria continued: “And neither of us are Rosario Dawson.”

Ferrera: “Nope. Well said, Salma.”

Longoria: “Thank you, Charo.”

It’s easily the best joke of the night.