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The Slap Heard Round the World

A very boring Oscars suddenly got very interesting—although I already feel dirty from the Monday morning memes and hot-takes.

Like most everybody else, I was like, “Another dumb bit”—and then when they ran out of seven seconds to zap in their seven-second delay, I realized, whoa, that was real.

If you missed it, here is the uncensored version from Japanese television:

I feel bad for anybody with a medical condition (Jada Pinkett-Smith has alopecia) and, yeah, Chris Rock told a dumb joke about it.

But, uh...we don’t hit people, right?

I don’t want to armchair-psychoanalyze a movie star. The whole thing just seems very sad and also foreboding as to the lowering and coarsening of our standards.

Chris Rock is awesome, and comedians need to be able to offend or sometimes go too far in order to perform.

If you’ve made hundreds of millions in entertainment, you’re a public figure, and one of the prices you pay is being fodder for comedians. So chill.

The telecast was otherwise a predictable bore that somehow went even longer than usual despite the controversial tape-delay presentation of several winners.

I am glad Hans Zimmer won for his score to Dune, it was marvelous.

This was an interesting piece by Ross Douthat, who I usually don’t care for, about the Oscars’ decline in viewership and relevance (behind the New York Times’ paywall).

For a few minutes there, it certainly was riveting television, though!

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Neil Bulk
Neil Bulk
Mar 28, 2022

Another blunder by the Academy. Will Smith should have been escorted out of the theater immediately and never allowed to accept his award on stage. Maybe they'll revoke his Academy membership. There has to be a consequence for this behavior.

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