entertainment

The nine most killer jokes from Chris Rock's opening monologue at the Oscars.

Given the controversy over the lack of black nominees at this year’s Academy Awards, host Chris Rock was always going to have plenty of material.

“Is Hollywood racist?” Rock asked. “You’re damn right Hollywood’s racist.”

And the hits didn’t stop there:

1. “I’m here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the White People’s Choice Awards.”

2. “No black nominees. People are like, ‘Chris you should boycott, Chris you should quit.’ How come it’s only unemployed people that tell you to quit something? … I thought about quitting. I thought about it really hard. But I realized they’re gonna have the Oscars anyway. They’re not gonna cancel the Oscars because I quit. And the last thing I need is to to lose another job to Kevin Hart, okay?”

3. “You realize if they nominated hosts, I wouldn’t even get this job! You’d all be watching Neil Patrick Harris right now.”

4. “Everybody went mad [this year] … Jada [Pinkett Smith] got mad. Jada said she’s not coming. Isn’t she on a TV show? Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties. I wasn’t invited.”

5. “I understand you’re mad. I’m not hating. … Jada’s mad her man Will [Smith] was not nominated for Concussion. I get it … It’s not fair that Will was this good and didn’t get nominated. You’re right. It’s also not fair that Will was paid $20 million for Wild Wild West, okay?”

6. “This year, things are going to be a little different. This year, in the In Memoriam package, it’s just going to be black people that were shot by the cops on their way to the movies … yes I said it!”

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7. “But things are changing. We got a black Rocky this year. Some people call it Creed; I call it Black Rocky. That’s an unbelievable statement, because Rocky takes place in a world where white athletes are as good as black athletes. Rocky is a science fiction movie. There are things that happened in Star Wars that are more believable than what happened in Rocky.”

8. “It’s not about boycotting anything, we want opportunity. We want the black actors to get the same opportunities as white actors. That’s it. Not just once. Leo gets a great part every year. All you guys get great parts all the time. But what about the black actors. Jamie Foxx is one of the best actors in the world. Jamie Foxx is so good in Ray that they went to the hospital and unplugged the real Ray Charles. They’re like, ‘We don’t need two of these.’”

But, by far, in his most controversial joke, Rock managed to bring together black politics and rape…

9. “Why are we protesting this Oscars? It’s the 88th Academy Awards, which means this ‘no black nominees’ thing happened at least 71 other times. You got to figure that it happened in the ’50s, in the ’60s. One of those years, Sidney [Poitier] didn’t put out a movie. I’m sure there were no black nominees some of those years, say ‘62 or ‘63. Black people did not protest. Why? Because we had real things to protest at the time. We were too busy being raped and lynched to care about who won best cinematography. When your grandmother’s swinging from a tree, it’s really hard to care about best documentary foreign short.”

That gag fell more than a little short…

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