Ricky Gervais says he's hosting the Golden Globes for the third time to annoy his critics.
"I did it the first time because I thought, that's fun. It's fun for a comedian to have a global audience like that. And I set it on the proviso that I do all my own material," he said Friday. "And they kept to that. And I did it the second time because I thought I could improve on the first and I think I did that. And I wasn't going to do it a third time, but then I kept reading reports, press saying, 'He'll never be invited back.' So I did it to annoy them."
Gervais talked about his Globes gig Sunday during a panel at the Television Critics Association winter press tour for "Life's Too Short," his new HBO show with Warwick Davis and Stephen Merchant.
He said he isn't worried about offending people with his monologue. Some of his jokes last year — including about "The Tourist" — were seen as going to far.
"If you get final edit, which I do and I demand… nothing else matters. You're bulletproof," he said. "I'm not one of those people who think comedy is your conscience taking the day off. My conscience never takes the day off. I know what I'm going to say. … I can justify it, I stand by it, as I do every joke I did last year, and I don't care. I don't care what people think."
Asked if he had already chosen his "targets" for Sunday's monologue, Gervais took issue with the word.
"Targets is a word I wouldn't use — subjects," he said. "I've got nothing against any of those people in the room. I've worked with many of them. I like many of them. I admire most of them. It's like, they're just gags. I'm not trying to hurt anyone's feelings or give them a bad night or undermine the moral fabric of America."
He added: "I'd rather they laugh than gasp. But I cherish the gasps along with the laughs."