We’ve all witnessed the slap heard round the world by now, but few of us had the luxury of actually filming ourselves when it happened. We just happened to be live-streaming during the Oscars and were lucky enough to watch Bagge Vance slap the face off of the Zebra from Madagascar.
So I’m just sitting there, right? Chris Rock comes out with his normal Chris Rock vibes. Loud, abrasive, but also funny. You know what I’m talking about. He cracks a joke about husbands and wives. It’s funny. I laugh. He says something about Jada Pinkett Smith. I don’t catch it. I do see Will laughing while Jada rolls her eyes. You know. A classic reaction to a Chris Rock joke. Next thing I know, I see the Fresh Prince on stage, winding up, and laying full-fledged, open-handed wallop on Chris Rock’s cheek. I do what any immature boy would do on a classic slapstick stunt. I laugh. But it’s a nervous laugh. Like, just a reaction to that kind of humor. Then, the sound cuts out. It’s like a horror movie. I’m thinking, “Oh look at Chris being Chris. Using some off-color language. He’s so unhinged, that Chris Rock is.” But then, the camera cuts to a Will Smith. It’s a silent film though. All I can do is read lips. And boy did I read his lips. “Keep my wife’s name out your f***kin’ mouth.” Instant panic ensues. And here are the thoughts that begin to race through my head:
“Was that not a bit? Was that real? Man, Chris Rock can really take a slap. This can’t be the first time he’s taken a slap. Wait, did that just happen? Oh my goodness. Are we in the Matrix? I need to hug my wife. I really hope I remembered to put the toilet seat down. Wait. Did Will Smith just actually hitch-slap Chris Rock? WHAT IS GOING ON? Am I dead? This can’t be heaven. Patrick Mahomes isn’t here and I know he’s an angel, so this can’t be heaven. I just want this to end. Wait. Will could end up winning the best actor and have to do a talking thing later. I can’t believe this just happened. I need to call my mom. Is that Questlove? What award is this? Did he win it at Army? SNAP OUT OF IT MOB! Wait. Did Will Smith, world-known singer of the classic song “Switch” where only he could famously rhyme the word ‘club’ with ‘club,’ just lay hands on Chris Rock? I should probably say something now…”
And I still feel awkward about it.
If Will Smith sits back down and doesn’t yell at Chris Rock you don’t convince me this wasn’t staged. My initial thought was “Man, Chris really sold that well. How did the sound guy time that perfectly?” Once our audio went out for more than a few seconds I knew something was way off. From there we all realized what was happening. If you look closely at me you can see what “fight-or-flight” looks like; That is if you’ve never chosen fight in your life and unfortunately have nowhere to run. I was living out a beta-boy nightmare. Go ahead, go back, and watch the full VOD of our Oscar stream. You’ll notice a stark decline in content quality from this point forward. I think we were all preoccupied with trying to investigate the situation via our Twitter feeds.
Be sure to holler at us on Twitter (@thecineboiz) and Instagram (@thecineboiz) and let us know how you feel. Also, be sure to follow Korked Bats on YouTube and The Cineboiz on Twitch to catch us live, and subscribe to The CineBoiz Podcast wherever podcasts are found!