Alton Brown's Tweet About Will Smith's Oscars Drama Has Fans Divided

Arguably the loudest noise about the 2022 Academy Awards wasn't concerning the winners, losers, or even the Oscars after-party dinner. The ceremony's biggest buzz centered on Will Smith and Chris Rock's altercation at the event.

Smith won the Best Actor award but became the center of attention for a very different (and controversial) reason. In short, the actor slapped comedian Chris Rock across the face on live television. Vulture explains that Rock made a joke about Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, appearing in "G.I. Jane II," an apparent reference to her shaved head (Smith has alopecia). Smith apparently then walked onstage to attack Rock. "Will Smith just smacked the [s***] out of me," Rock reportedly said. "Keep my wife's name out of your [f******] mouth," Smith shouted back.

Smith later made some apologies during his acceptance speech, and Rock has refrained from pressing charges. Still, social media did what social media does and produced hot takes. Among them, Pennsylvania State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta tweeted, "Will Smith smacking Chris Rock and QuestLove winning an Oscar are the two most back to back Philly things to ever happen at the Oscars." Comedian Kathy Griffin brought up the precedent the incident could set in the comedy world when she tweeted, "Now [comedians] all have to worry about who wants to be the next Will Smith in comedy clubs and theaters."

One celebrity in the food world also had a hot take that's dividing fans.

Alton Brown's take on the Oscars situation is causing a stir

Alton Brown, who is very active online, apparently couldn't refrain from giving his own take on the scene from the 2022 Academy Awards. And the celebrity chef's take is causing a stir of its own. "I cannot find the words to describe my love for #WillSmith right now," he tweeted.

At publication time, nearly 3,500 people liked it. "As we all should," one responded. "I don't care what the scenario, environment, or situation is you don't make fun of someone's chronic illness in front of millions of people."

Many people, however, took a different view. This response sums it up: "Well, joking about alopecia is of awful taste but resorting to physical means is no chivalry but only violence." Pointing out how this is a poor lesson to give to children, another person tweeted, "I work hard to teach my students that violence is never the answer and you are sitting here applying [sic] one man striking another over a bad joke. I applaud Chris Rock's restraint."

Whether in the entertainment or food worlds, the hot takes on this viral and controversial Oscars moment are coming fast and furious.

Other food celebrities aren't biting

Alton Brown is already more outspoken on Twitter than many other celebrity chefs. And, unsurprisingly, many of them remained quiet about the slap heard 'round the world. Among those food personalities who did mention it, none sided with Will Smith, as Brown did.

"Chopped" judge Amanda Freitag only quote-tweeted a fan comment that asked, "If a presenter @ #Oscar2022 can get slapped how soon before an angry chef gets slap happy after being #Chopped ?" Freitag added two laughing-face emojis to her retweet. And "Nailed It!" host Nicole Byer quote-tweeted a Variety post claiming that the LAPD didn't have any details of the incident, writing: "NO DETAILS? LAPD DONT HAVE A TV!!! WHERES THESE BUDGETS GOING?!?!?" Byer later added a second tweet, writing, "Much like will smith these ppl in my mentions don't like jokes."

The only major food personality to deal substantively with the topic was Sunny Anderson, who agreed wholeheartedly with a tweet lamenting the fact that Black people were asked to give their opinion on the matter. Still, she offered two thoughts anyway. The first was that violence is never the answer. The second accepted that there would be a debate but added that it wouldn't be fruitful. "None of it will pay our bills or help us retire early," she wrote. "None of the parties involved will see us walking down the street and give us dap for holding them down."

Brown has also come under fire for tasteless jokes

Because Alton Brown's take was so succinct, fans don't know why he approved of Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the 2022 Academy Awards. 

Does Brown think joking about a Black woman's hair on internationally broadcasted television should be taboo? Does the slap play into some idea of chivalry? Or does he just dislike Chris Rock? As Brown didn't explain his feelings in more detail, the reasons will likely remain unspoken.

However, it's worth noting that Brown tweeted a Holocaust joke during the 2020 election. He then apologized, as the Jewish Journal reported, stating that the comparison was not for humorous effect, but to portray his anxiety. Still, Brown also made a race-related joke in Iowa in 2005, per The Clean Platter. Brown may be on Smith's side over the Oscars debacle, but the chef is no stranger to controversy, either.