A Way-Too-Detailed Breakdown Of Will Smith’s Slap

Note: This is the uncensored cut of the slap. NSFW language.

It was the slap heard around the world. Will Smith slapped Chris Rock in front of the world at the Oscars, following the comedian’s joke about Jada’s hair. But we’re not here to debate who is in the right. We are here to analyze the slap. As a proud informer at WJJY, I strive only to bring you the most scientific and truth-ish analysis possible. This is serious business.


Let’s start with Will himself. Following Rock’s joke at Jada’s expense, Will smith was seen laughing. Not just smirking. His teeth were showing, his mouth was open, he found the joke funny. Jada, clearly did not. This is important to remember, as I truly believe this slap was done on Jada’s behalf or behest. Our fighter didn’t have his spirit in it.


Will Smith might be a movie star, but if Steven Segal has taught us one thing it’s that actors tend to over exaggerate their prowess in combat off-screen. Let’s look at one of the fundamentals of laying a smackdown on someone, the footwork. When attempting to hit someone, you should always step forward with your slapping hand, dragging your trailing foot behind. In professional slapping (yes that’s a thing), you are not even allowed to move your feet. Smith, on the other hand, made the cardinal error. He slapped using his right hand, yes… But he stepped with his left foot. Smith also busted into this pose like he was getting jiggy with it, instead of throwing the slap with a fluid and powerful motion. 


This is not the slap of a champion, Will Smith is no Vasily Kamotsky. Smith instead cut down on his own power with an awkward and uncoordinated slap move. Not only is this awkward footwork harder to do, it decreases the power of the slap. It landed, but with the power of a wet noodle. Note Rock, who was clearly taken aback by what the five fingers said to the face, never once rubbed his face. 


Why would Smith get his whack so wrong? Pure theatrics. It looked like a good slap, but ultimately landed poorly. It’s key to remember that Will Smith is an actor. That’s not to say that the instance was fake, by all accounts it was real, but rather Will Smith learned to slap on a movie set. Smith hasn’t had to engage in open palmed fisticuffs off the silver screen in decades, probably ever. He probably just utilized the tips he learned from his director at one point.


Ultimately Rock is the victor here. He took the slap like a champ, took a licking and kept on ticking. 


Smith walked away with a smirk, thinking his wet noodle landed with the equivalent force of a thousand suns, no doubt. Thinking that he’s tough and he just proved it to Rock. Ultimately the smirk belies the ego of someone who didn’t realize the fundamentals of slapping.