How Violence Saved the Oscars


Joseph McGuire

In 2021, the Oscars raked in their lowest viewing ever with only 10 million average viewers, and a 2.12 rating from viewers. This was a decline from the average 24 million viewers who would watch the show every year. Some of these reasons are that it has been without a host for three years. Another reason is that the acceptance speeches have been filled with controversial talking points, which a lot of people despise. This is a consistent theme, as the Emmy’s and the Grammy’s also saw record low views in 2021.

While the 2022 Oscars had a host, it was the controversial comedian Amy Schumer who has a bad reputation for stealing jokes. As the show began, there was still very little viewership. However, with one swift movement of a hand the ratings jumped.

Chris Rock was in the middle of a stand-up comedy routine when he made a joke about Jada Smith’s hair loss. He said “Jada, I love you, and I cannot wait for GI Jane 2 to come out.” Upon hearing this, Will Smith stormed the stage and open hand smacked Chris Rock across the face. In a turn of events, Will Smith won an Oscar for best actor.

As Smith accepted the award with tears in his eyes, the viewership jumped by nearly 700,00 viewers. Overall the show averaged 16.6 million viewers, with a 3.8 rating. These numbers were up by nearly 60% from last year! Although this was still the second lowest viewed Oscars of all time, it seems to be trending in the right direction.