Nearly a year after the infamous Oscars slap from Will Smith, Chris Rock has finally opened up a little more about how he feels about the whole situation. But Rock didn’t express his feelings in an interview or anything, he decided to take it to the global stage on his newest Netflix special, Selective Outrage.
On Saturday, for the first time ever, Netflix aired a live comedy special that saw Rock as the headliner at the Hippodrome Theater in Baltimore.
Realizing the viewers and audience members were all dying for the answer to the same question – how does he feel about the slap? – Rock decided to leave it for the end. But even though it was the last segment of his show, he still got his fair share of licks in.
Throughout the show, he teased about talking about Smith, saying things like, “Everybody who says words hurt has never been punched in the face,” and, “I can’t go dissing Snoop [Dogg]. The last thing I need is another mad rapper.” But he diverted back into the subject matter he was talking about, saving his thoughts about last year’s Oscars for last.
Finally addressing the slap, he said, “People are like, ‘Did it hurt?’ It still hurts! I got summertime ringing in my ears! But I’m not a victim, baby. You will never see me on Oprah, Gayle, crying.”
He continued to talk about his and Will’s size difference and why that especially frustrated him.
“Will Smith is significantly bigger than me,” he started. “He does movies with his shirt off! You’ve never seen me do a movie with my shirt off. If I’m in a movie getting open heart surgery, I got on a sweater. Will Smith played Muhammed Ali in a movie! You think I auditioned for that part? I played Pookie in New Jack City.
“Even in animation, he’s bigger,” he added. “I’m a zebra, he’s a shark.”
Despite Will being the one who slapped him, Rock directed much of his anger towards Smith’s wife – and the one whom he made the GI Jane joke about that provoked the slap – Jada Pinkett Smith.
“Nobody was picking on her,” he said. “She said, me, a grown-ass man, should quit his job [as 2016 Oscars host] because her husband didn’t get nominated for Concussion. Then he gave me a concussion.”
He added, “She hurt him way more than he hurt me,” referencing Pinkett Smith’s talkshow, Red Table Talk, and how she used it as a platform to openly discuss her affair with August Alsina directly to Will on the show.
He even admitted that he had been a big Will Smith fan before the incident, saying, “I love Will Smith … he’s made some great movies. I have rooted for Will Smith my whole life.” But now he has mixed feelings.
Rock closed his show with a last remark about his reaction to the slap.
“A lot of people go, ‘Chris, how come you didn’t do nothing back?’ Because I’ve got parents! That’s why. Because I was raised,” he joked, adding, “You know what my parents taught me? Don’t fight in front of white people!”
Selective Outrage is available to stream on Netflix.