Chris Rock Gets Ready to Discuss 'The Slap'

Comedian will do so in a live Netflix special on Saturday night
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 28, 2023 6:23 AM CST
Chris Rock Gets Ready to Discuss 'The Slap'
Chris Rock, left, and Will Smith.   (AP Photo/File)

Ever since Will Smith slapped Chris Rock during the Oscars last year, Rock has held off on talking about it in front of a wide public audience. That changes in a big way this weekend, when Rock's Saturday night show in Baltimore will be live-streamed on Netflix, per the Hollywood Reporter. The special, called Selective Outrage, comes just ahead of the Mar. 12 Oscars awards for 2023. It starts at 10pm Eastern at the Hippodrome Theatre, and it's the first time Netflix has ever live-streamed a comedy special. As the Wall Street Journal notes, Rock has been working out the Smith material in smaller venues over the past year. But he appears to have been running the lines mostly by other veteran comics, per PageSix, maybe to help keep it under wraps.

Two lines he has used at shows in the past year: "Anyone who says words hurt has never been punched in the face," and, "Will did the impression of a perfect person for 30 years, and he ripped his mask off and showed us he was as ugly as the rest of us.” Despite the widespread interest, the Oscars material is not expected to dominate the special. In fact, the Journal notes that at two recent shows, Rock devoted only about five minutes to the subject, though that material received the biggest laughs. The riffs "included bits about the men’s size disparity, his reasons for not retaliating in the moment, and what he thinks really triggered the slap." (More Chris Rock stories.)

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