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Ricky Gervais to host the Golden Globes again?

So much for all that grumbling after last year’s Golden Globes — when (some said) host Ricky Gervais had a little too much fun at the audience’s expense. If his jokes did cross the line, then why would NBC ask him to helm the awards show for a third consecutive time?

Ratings, of course!

Whatever the reason, the edgy comedian says that the network has indeed extended the offer for him to emcee this January’s show — but he says he’ll probably decline.

“I love NBC, I love the fact they stuck by me through it,” Gervais told reporters, including the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper. “(But) I don’t think I should do it. What am I going back as?”

It’s a vindicating moment for the edgy comedian, who experienced some backlash after taking jabs at Charlie Sheen, Hugh Hefner, Scientologists, and the critically maligned Johnny Depp/Angelina Jolie movie “The Tourist.” He even attacked Philip Berk, the president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (which puts on the Globes), telling the audience, “I just had to help him off the toilet and pop his teeth in.”

When Robert Downey Jr. took the stage to present an award, he expressed his ire through a veiled joke. “Aside from the fact that it’s been hugely mean-spirited with mildly sinister undertones, I’d say the vibe of the show’s pretty good so far, wouldn’t you?” he said. (Naturally, Gervais had just poked fun at him about his issues with drug addiction.) The following day, a small media frenzy ensued, with pundits asking the question, “Did he cross the line?”

Some media outlets began to report that Gervais had gone too far. He wouldn’t get away with it, and he wouldn’t be asked back to host.

But as early as February, Gervais said that NBC had reached out to gauge his interest in hosting once again — though he did clarify that the HFPA likely did not share NBC’s opinion on the matter. “At no point did I talk to The Hollywood Foreign Press Association,” he told The Hollywood Reporter at the time. “I’m absolutely sure they don’t want me back.”

Assuming NBC does want Gervais back, his critics were wrong. If the show’s producers were angry, they obviously didn’t stay that way — probably because a stint this year would be ratings gold. Plus, how can you stay mad at the guy who gave us “The Office?”