After the famous comedian and host of the 94th Annual Academy Awards, Chris Rock, gets slapped in the face during the said event by also famous comedian and actor Will Smith, we all started waiting for Rock’s reaction. And waiting, and waiting, and waiting. Then when nothing happened, the waiting stopped because we didn’t think it would take almost one whole year for him to finally acknowledge it. Or that he would do so with a Netflix special.
However, if there was any way for him to do it, it shouldn’t have come as a surprise that he chose the comedy route, the route that got him slapped in the first place.
He begins the Will Smith portion of the special by saying: “That is not a Jay Z diss. I do not need another rapper mad at me,” and then looking into the crowd, knowingly said: “Everybody knows.”
The name of the special itself is a diss towards Will Smith since Rock utters at some point that Will Smith suffers from selective outrage because, as opposed to Jada Picket-Smith, he didn’t have any entanglements, and he was still the one to get hit. This is a reference to Will Smith’s wife cheating on him with his son’s friend, as he put in other more graphic words.
Chris Rock also made fun of the couple by mentioning that while being cheated on is normal, being interviewed by the person that cheated on you on television is not. This is what happened on Red Table Talk, a talk show starring Jada Pickett-Smith. It is also a reason why Will Smith can’t really come after him after the special: “Now, I normally wouldn’t talk about this sh*t, but for some reason, these ni***s put that sh*t on the internet.”
Another reason why Chris Rock believes that Will Smith has selective outrage is due to the public shame seen on Red Table Talk “everybody in the world called him a b*tch… and who does he hit? Me.” He also confesses that he tried to call Will Smith after the affair and the publication of it to offer his condolences, but Smith did not respond.
And although Rock believes that Jada hurt Smith more than Smith hurt him, he still confesses how he used to love Will Smith and now watches the film Emancipation just to see him get “whooped.”
He ends the show responding to people that always ask him why he didn’t hit back: because he has parents because he was raised and because his parents told him “don’t fight in front of white people.” Proving that, contrary to what he said at the beginning of the special (“anyone who says words hurt has never been punched in the face”), words may be more impactful than a slap in this case.