As the 2023 Oscars approach, Chris Rock is here to once again remind us what happened at last year’s ceremony. The stand-up comedian has been testing material about Will Smith’s infamous slap out on tour for a while now, but his live Netflix special Selective Outrage was a chance to get those jokes in front of a wider audience. Rock kicked off last night’s set by saying with a smile, “Anybody that says words hurt has never been punched in the face.” He later also made a subtle reference to The Fresh Prince after making quips about Snoop Dogg and Jay-Z, joking that he doesn’t need any more rappers mad at him. However, he saved the majority of his Smith material for the final minutes of the special. “I got smacked at the fucking Oscars by this motherfucker. And people like, did it hurt? It still hurts,” Rock said. “I got ‘Summertime’ ringing in my ears.” Still, he insisted that he’s not a “victim” and will never cry on TV about it, adding that he “took that hit like [boxer Manny] Pacquiao.”
Rock noted that Smith is “significantly bigger” than him, pointing out that Smith played Muhammad Ali in a movie, while he played Pookie in New Jack City. Then — while speaking live from Jada Pinkett Smith’s hometown of Baltimore —Rock brought up the couple’s “entanglement” situation involving August Alsina that was dissected on Red Table Talk. “Everybody in here has been cheated on,” Rock said. “None of us have ever been interviewed by the person that cheated on us on television.” He added that he tried to call Smith to express his condolences during a time when everyone was calling him a bitch. “Everybody, and who’s he hit? Me. A n—a he knows he could beat. That is some bitch ass shit,” he said.
Smith famously felt that Rock’s Oscars joke about Jada’s baldness was insensitive to his wife’s medical condition. According to Rock, no one was picking on Jada, who he feels actually “started this shit.” She previously called for a boycott of the 2016 Oscars due to a lack of diversity among nominees, which Rock characterized as her telling him to quit his job because her husband wasn’t nominated for his role in Concussion. “And then this n—a gives me a fucking concussion,” Rock said. The comedian claimed that he has rooted for Smith his whole life, but now watches Emancipation and finds himself “rooting for massa” to hit Smith, who plays an escaped slave. Rock concluded his special by explaining that he didn’t do anything to Smith on the night of the slap because his parents taught him never to fight in front of white people. A replay of Selective Outrage is available on Netflix now. We can only wonder if the Smiths will be streaming.