It’s been a wild ride ever since Will Smith went on stage and slapped Chris Rock during a live broadcast of the 2022 Oscars. The physical assault seen by millions left many divided on whether or not it was warranted. The March 4 release of Rock’s new Netflix comedy special, Selective Outrage, has reignited the discussion.

He used the hour-long program as a venting session to let the masses know how he’s been coping with the situation. While all of the reviews weren’t in his favor, the Madagascar actor does have several famous friends in his corner. “Brilliantly executed,” fellow entertainer D.L. Hughley said in an Instagram post this week about the show. After defending Rock’s “creative expression,” the radio host added, “That happened to HIM, to CHRIS… and the ENTIRE WORLD got to weigh in, and talk trash, and make jokes and ‘Shoulda, woulda, coulda’ the whole damn thing to death. OTHER COMEDIANS have bits about it, it was an opener for most of us. The ONE PERSON YOU NEVER HEARD FROM ABOUT IT WAS CHRIS!”

Hughley continued to make his point: “So NOW that HE decides to address it on HIS TIME, people have the audacity to say: ‘He’s bitter… Why is he still talking about that?… Let it go…’ Or the best one, ‘WE’VE MOVED ON.’ So YOU got to speak on it, but he can’t??? Y’all are a straight f*n trip. Congratulations, Chris Rock, YOU DID THE DAMN THANG!!” Comedic actress Leslie Jones also appeared in the comment section in defense of Rock, writing, “Y’all forget he got slapped in front of the world, yo! His kids, his mama, peers EVERYONE! I wonder how y’all muthaf**kas would handle that! And he is A COMEDIAN. This is his way of expressing it. If he sang, he would write a song. ‘Cause it’s a painful thing that [happened]. Y’all act like you would be righteous! YOU ARE HYPOCRITES! Shut the f**k up and go sit down.”

Comedian Loni Love suggested things would have played out differently if the two actors weren’t Black. “There is a 7-12 second delay on the [Oscars’] live telecast. If Chris Rock was Chris Evans, maybe that slap would not have been shown. We would have [seen] a commercial for Tide,” she tweeted this week. Smith publicly apologized to Rock last year but has not made any statements since the Netflix special. Today (March 9), the New York Post claimed a source told the outlet that the Emancipation actor is “embarrassed and hurt” by the jokes told during the recent show.

See related posts below.