Many comedians will say their material is meant to get people talking, but some bits can be viewed as downright offensive. Following the March 4 Netflix release of Chris Rock’s Selective Outrage comedy special, one of Michael Jackson’s relatives is thanking Will Smith for the Oscars slap seen around the world.
After enduring the embarrassment that came with last year’s “Slapgate,” Chris Rock had an undeniably huge opportunity to tell his side of the story this month. The comedian teamed up with Netflix for his latest comedy special, which spanned two and a half hours, and has already earned the Rush Hour actor significant backlash. Most of the criticism is coming from those accusing him of “punching down on Black women” for making disparaging comments about Meghan Markle and calling Jada Pinkett Smith a “bitch” on more than one occasion.
Elsewhere in the standup set, Rock made comments about the late Michael Jackson that aren’t sitting well with many viewers. “I’m all for social justice, I’m all for marginalized people getting they rights,” he says in the circulating clip. “The thing I have a problem with is… the selective outrage. Selective outrage! You know what I’m talking about! One person does something and gets cancelled, and somebody else does the exact same thing… Nothing!”
This is what you call the transformer, MEGATRASH!!! This FOOL… #ChrisRock #MichaelJackson pic.twitter.com/wjdhho07a9
— R&RForever1814 (@TruLogic94) March 5, 2023
The 57-year-old continues, “You know what I’m talking about. You know, like the kind of people that play Michael Jackson songs, but won’t play R. Kelly.” At this point, a rumble of laughter is heard moving through the crowd, causing Rock to smile wide. “Same crime! One of ’em just got better songs. I play ‘Startin’ Something’ and it’s a party, but I play ‘Bump and Grind’ and you an activist,” he adds as the audience laughs on.
While Rock obviously got the laugh he was looking for on stage, online the response has been far less kind. In fact, the King of Pop’s nephew, Taj Jackson, loudly called the comedian out on Monday (March 6) before thanking the Gemini Man actor for slapping him. “Chris Rock has used my family as punching bags for his entire career,” the 49-year-old alleged in a tweet.
Chris Rock has used my family as punching bags for his entire career.
Yet I am supposed to feel bad for him getting slapped and humiliated on the Oscars.
After seeing a new clip of him attacking my dead uncle in the first minutes of his “Retaliation-I’m still relevant ”special,… https://t.co/r8dNZUZ5fr
— Taj Jackson (@tajjackson3) March 6, 2023
“Yet I am supposed to feel bad for him getting slapped and humiliated [at] the Oscars. After seeing a new clip of him attacking my dead uncle in the first minutes of his ‘retaliation – I’m still relevant’ special, I have three things to say,” Jackson’s rant went on. “1. What did my family ever do to you to warrant these decades of harassment and your constant bullying [disguised] as jokes?”
For his second point, the former 3T member reminded Rock that, just because he experienced bullying as a child doesn’t give him the right to tear down others now. Jackson ended with, “3. Thank you, Will Smith,” seemingly praising the embattled actor for slapping the comedian nearly a year ago.