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Friday, April 19, 2024

Will Smith and Chris Rock at the Academy Awards: A Discussion Guide

Lead thoughtful discussion about the far-reaching and long-lasting effects of the comment from Chris Rock and the subsequent slap from Will Smith.

All articles featured in The Beet are creative, satirical and/or entirely fictional pieces. They are fully intended as such and should not be taken seriously as news.

At the Academy Awards on Sunday, Chris Rock joked about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair by asking if she was going to be in GI Jane 2 — a seemingly tasteless joke about Pinkett Smith’s alopecia. 

In response, Will Smith strolled up on stage and slapped him. This incident says about where we are right now as a country. More than that, it raises questions and leads to interesting and important conversations.

This slap has brought forth topics we as a society have been needing to discuss for a long time. Here is a quick step by step guide of the questions you should be asking and the discussions you should be having:

  1. Do traditional notions of masculinity have something to do with violence?
    1. Are you sure?
  2. Is there precedent for this, or is this an unprecedented time? 
  3. What is alopecia?
  4. Are men expected to fight everyone who insults their partner? 
    1. What if it’s not that serious?
    2. What if they want it to be serious, but haven’t had that discussion yet and don’t want to give the wrong impression of how they feel about the state of the relationship?
  5. How will this lead to unmitigated violence against comedians?
  6. Should the police be present in every interpersonal interaction just in case?
  7. What message does this act of violence at the Academy Awards send to the world? 
    1. Should the US compensate for any notions of being violence-prone by sending troops into Ukraine?
  8. In November of last year, Will Smith felt the need to tell the world he used to vomit after orgasming. Remember that?
  9. Should future award presenters be armed?
  10. What does this mean for poly relationships? 
    1. How many partners will be coming in the event one of them is insulted? 
    2. Will their partner’s partners be coming too?
    3. Can the insulter bring friends, or are they on their own? 
    4. How many poly people would the insulter have to be up against for it to become fair for them to have a knife?
  11. What does this mean for the Toronto Maple Leafs?
  12. What broad conclusions can we draw about large groups of people?
  13. Will Smith was in “Shark Tale” and Chris Rock was in “Madagascar.” These are both Dreamworks films. The founders of Dreamworks include Steven Spielberg, who was nominated for directing “Westside Story,” but did not win. Is this a coincidence?
  14. How is the militant far-right responding to this year’s Oscars drama?
    1. Does this change your opinion on the film “Hitch”?
  15. Does alopecia have anything to do with aloe vera?
    1. Does this change your opinion on the film “Hitch”?
  16. Another founder of Dreamworks is Jeffrey Katzenburg who founded Quibi. Remember Quibi?
  17. What does this interaction say about the First Amendment in today’s world?
  18. What may have happened at the Academy Awards if they had defunded the police?
  19. Will Smith would vomit after orgasming, but not after assaulting someone on live TV. Does he love violence, or does he hate women?
  20. How have the past couple years of the pandemic made you rethink your opinion of “Men in Black 3”?
  21. How do you plan to keep the comedians in your life safe?
  22. Which Quibi show made you say “I might watch that if it wasn’t on Quibi”?
  23. What are Willow and Jaden up to these days?
  24. Should you be concerned about gang-like violence if two polycules get into a fight?
  25. What dark hidden meaning does this reveal behind Willow Smith’s “Meet Me at our Spot”?
  26. Could Chris Rock have saved Quibi?

This altercation was a massive deal that will ripple decades into the future. I hope these questions lead to constructive, well-organized discussions. Keep in mind, the goal of many of these conversations is to see how quickly you can bring up the murder of George Floyd. The world, now more than ever, needs more people comparing things to other things. We will not forget this important event when another thing happens.

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Jeffrey Brown

Jeffrey Brown is a former Arts Editor for the Daily Cardinal. He writes for The Beet occasionally and does some drawing and photography too. He is a senior majoring in Sociology. Do not feed him after midnight.

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