So pretty much as expected this year with Billy Crystal hosting for the ninth time after Eddie Murphy's highly publicised acceptance and then rejection of the role after Brett Ratner stepped down as show producer.
The two frontrunner films ended up with five gongs apiece with Michel Hazavanicius' The Artist predictably walking away with Best Picture, Director and Actor, whilst Martin Scorsese's Hugo winning on mainly its technical merits.
There was recognition too for Woody Allen for his screenplay for Midnight In Paris, one of the more left-field nominations The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo for best Film Editing, and awards went to two stars of two cult TV shows in the shape of Community's Dean Pelton (Jim Rash for The Descendants) and Flight of The Conchords' Bret McKenzie for Best Original Song (The Muppets).
Maybe the biggest upset of the evening (though rather tame by Oscar's standards) was the Academy choosing Meryl Streep to receive her third win out of her seventeen nominations since 1978 for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in Phyllida Lloyd's The Iron Lady. Surely Viola Davis' performance in the uplifting triumph-against-adversity-by-numbers The Help would have warmed the Academy's cockles with greater efficiency, but then again, maybe Streep's nomination-to-win ratio was just too embarrassing to ignore any longer.
And let's not mention - for one last time I promise - the passing over of Fassbender, Shannon, Paquin, and Von Trier...