Selective Outrage: What’s worth more on a Live Stream, a Slap or a Joke?

Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars last year was the most infamous moment on live television in the last two decades. The comedian returned a year later with his new show, “Selective Outrage,” the first-ever Netflix live broadcast, and he wasn’t shy about discussing what happened.

So, which moment had a greater emotional impact on viewers? Was the joke mightier than the slap?

By analyzing both moments using our US panel, we were able to compare how engaging each moment was in capturing viewers’ attention on screen. After careful consideration of the results, the victory is awarded to Chris Rock.

Emotional Impact Score – The Slap vs. The Joke

The analysis shows the moment Will Smith slapped Chris Rock during the 2022 Oscars ceremony had a peak activation of 1334 EIS (Emotional Impact Score). In comparison, the climax of Selective Outrage, where Chris Rock directly addresses the slapping, had a 10% higher emotional impact (1452 EIS). Not surprisingly, 54% of the viewers said their favorite parts of the whole show were the jokes about Will Smith.

But how engaging was Selective Outrage?

According to our analysis, the broadcast received an EIS of 538, which is 3% higher than MindProber’s norm for all sessions*. The show also had a positive overall likeability rating of 1.04, which is 126% higher than the average.

Confirming the show’s overall popularity, 60% of viewers rated it “Excellent” and 62% said they enjoyed Chris Rock’s performance. Selective Outrage was rated as a “high-quality” show by 61% of viewers, as “very interesting” by 62%, and as “fully capturing” their attention by 65%.

Selective Outrage – MindProber Analysis Scores

Are live shows a good bet for Netflix?

Yes, according to our viewers’ feedback!

90% of our panelists thought live shows on Netflix were a “good idea,” with 84% saying they are “very likely” to watch future live shows on the streaming platform. 

As our analysis shows, Chris Rock’s “Selective Outrage” was a good bet for Netflix’s first live broadcast show. It also opens the way for more live broadcasts by the streaming service.

Final cut

According to the data collected from our US panel, Chris Rock’s “Selective Outrage” was more emotionally stimulating (or entertaining) for viewers than Will Smith slapping him at the Oscars last year. 

Chris Rock and his “Selective Outrage” captivated the audience with his witty take on style and substance. The show not only marks Chris Rock’s triumphant return to the stage, but it also bodes well for Netflix, which now has a precedent for compelling live broadcasts.

* MindProber sessions include sports, scripted and unscripted shows, as well as other stand-up comedy shows

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