"Slapgate has reinforced Rock’s brand as a no-holds-barred comic," says Andrew Wallenstein. "What reflected even better on Rock was how he handled Smith’s attack. Rather than getting into an ugly onstage fracas, he quite literally turned the other cheek, kept his composure under unimaginable pressure, made light of having been slapped and continued to present the award for documentary feature."
Team Chris or Team Will?: Comedians are taking sides -- and not all of them are backing Chris Rock: At the Hollywood Improv Monday night, the DeRay Davis-hosted weekly residency MonDeRays featured a lot of jokes at Rock's expense, reports the Los Angeles Times' Nate Jackson. "Throughout the night, the lineup of stand-ups, culminating with special guests Michael Blackson and rap-mogul-turned-comic T.I., didn’t do much standing up for Rock," reports Jackson. "Most of the jokes were about his lack of return fire." Jackson adds that the crowd was split when asked whom they support.
Comedians are finding their world is no longer "a safe place": "Apparently, to be a comedian is to be a part of a race that is constantly in danger," says Sarah Hagi. "Comedians are under attack. They aren’t safe on the stage. They aren’t safe from cancel culture. They aren’t even allowed to make jokes anymore, and that fact displayed itself clear as day when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars on Sunday. Since then, members of the comedy community have bravely been confronting a harsh reality — what if they are one day the Chris Rock and a Will Smith is in their audience?"
Woman with alopecia who appeared in Rock's Good Hair documentary says "shame on you": “While I do not condone violence (or what Will Smith did), I am not completely surprised that Chris Rock got rocked by Will Smith after making the medical condition of @jadapinkettsmith part of his comedic schtick — disrespecting her publicly,” Sheila Bridges wrote on Instagram. “Shame on you @chrisrock. Didn’t we sit down and talk at length about how painfully humiliating and difficult it is to navigate life as a bald woman in a society that is hair obsessed? As if life isn’t challenging enough out here as an unprotected black woman?”