In his opening monologue on Saturday, Carmichael addressed the incident when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock onstage at the award ceremony, without directly saying any of those particular words or names.
“I’m not gonna talk about it,” he began his monologue. “I’ve talked about it enough. Kept talking about it. Kept thinking about it. I don’t wanna talk about it. You can’t make me talk about it…Aren’t you sick of talking about it?”
Carmichael said he’d been asked to address the moment by SNL head Lorne Michaels, who said “the nation needs to heal.”
“‘Heal the nation’? I’ve been gay for like 48 hours, bro,” he said of coming out as gay in his HBO special, Rothaniel. “There’s so much gay stuff I gotta do before I can ‘heal the nation’. I’ve got so many homophobic cousins — I can’t even heal my family.”