Chris Rock finally hit the Oscars and made Netflix history on Saturday, with the platform’s first global live-streaming event.
“I’m going to try to put on a show tonight without offending anyone. I’m going to do my best, because you never know who might get turned on,” Rock said, opening his set from Baltimore. “People always say words hurt…anyone who says words hurt hasn’t been punched in the face.”
After that quick, obvious reference to Will Smith slapping him on stage at the Oscars last year, Rock saved his jokes about the incident until the show’s final 10 minutes.
“You all know what happened to me, that I got slapped by Shug Smith,” Rock said. “It still hurts. I got ‘Summer’ ringing in my ear. But I’m no victim, baby. You’ll never see me on Oprah or Gael cry… I took that hit like Pacquiao.”
Hear Chris Rock’s first comments since smacking the Oscars
Rock suggested that Smith’s response to an Oscars joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, was more about their relationship than him.
“I love Will Smith, all my life,” Rock said. “I’ve been rooting for Will Smith my whole life…now I watch ‘Emancipation’ just to see him yell”.
Smith plays an enslaved man in the period drama Emancipation.
Rock said people asked him, “Why didn’t you do anything that night?” “Because I have my parents. You know what my parents taught me? Don’t fight in front of white people.”
Titled “Chris Rock: Selective Rage,” the comedian tackled a wide range of topics in the first 50 minutes of the special, including addiction, abortion, racism in America, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, the Kardashian family, and “waking up.”
“I don’t have a problem with wakeness. I don’t have a problem with that at all. I’m all for social justice. I’m all for marginalized people getting their rights. The thing I have a problem with is selective anger,” Rock said. “You know what I’m talking about . One person does something, it gets cancelled. Someone else doing the exact same thing, nothing. You know what I’m talking about…the kind of people who play Michael Jackson songs but don’t play R. Kelly. Same crime, one of them has better songs.”
Speaking of dividing the country, Rock said, “America is in a terrible situation right now.”
We got worse situation than Ukraine. Yes, I said it. do you know why? “Because Ukraine is united and America is clearly divided,” Rock joked. “If the Russians came here now, half the country would say, ‘Let’s hear them out. ‘” We are in a bad situation now.”
Rock also dabbled in his romantic life, saying when he noticed his pillowcases were dirty, he realized how much women do to men.
He said, “I try to date women my age, and he is 10 to 15 years younger than me.” “Don’t hate the player, hate the game. I didn’t get rich nor stay in shape to talk about Anita Baker. I try to do — Doja Cat.”
The performance was the sixth rock stand-up special and his second on Netflix after 2018’s Tamborine, directed by Bo Burnham.
The pre-show event kicked off with comedian Ronnie Cheng live from Los Angeles telling the audience, “We could have imagined this whole thing and no one would care, but we’re doing it for a noble cause: to finally try to kill traditional television and put it out of its misery.” In fact, if you listen seriously, you can hear Baby Boomers cancel their latest cable subscription packages.”
There was also a special after-show with comedians Arsenio Hall, Dana Carvey, David Spade, Yvone Orji, and more.
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