Let's get right to it. Yes, Chris Rock referenced the Oscar Slap during his Thursday appearance at the Mystic Lake Casino Showroom. No, he didn't dwell on it.
"I'm OK," he said at the top of his performance, the first of two in Prior Lake. "I got my hearing back. Got all my fillings put in."
He mentioned the incident one other time in a piece about victim mentality, referring to Will Smith as "Suge." That's more than he shared when his "Ego Death World Tour" kicked off in early April — but it's still not much.
That's not a surprise. Rock's specialty is commenting about the craziness around him, not inside him. He's judge, jury and executioner, roles that were emphasized every time he crossed center stage and his two-story shadow appeared on the backdrop, looming over the packed audience.
"In some ways Ukraine has it better than us," he said during his tirade about the state of the United States. "At least they're together."
Rock, dressed all in white, had a long list of targets, including Trumpsters, anti-vaxxers and the royal family. But he was at his best when he went places you didn't expect.
He had a hilarious bit in which he applauded the Kardashians for being so inclusive.
"They love Black people more than Black people do," he said, reminding the crowd that their father helped get O.J. Simpson an acquittal.
He defended the practice of dating much younger women, if only because they're content with little things like a new pair of shoes. Some in the packed audience gasped when he made a joke that wasn't so kind to pro-choice advocates.
"Did I say something wrong?" he asked with a devilish grin.
Rock was all over the place, bouncing around without smooth transitions. He's clearly still figuring out what works — and what doesn't — before he films his next special. On the plus side, his search kept him on stage for roughly two hours. (He's back for the second appearance at 8 p.m. Friday.)
It was near the end of the show that Rock revealed his meatiest — and most personal — material. He may be the cool outsider but he has shown signs in his 50s that he's ready to open up.
His last tour, which stopped by Minneapolis in 2017, was largely about his infidelities that led to a divorce. But even then, he was skittish about sharing too much, darting out of the confessional booth before he was forced to say Hail Marys.
This time around, he worried about raising privileged daughters who don't appreciate the good life they have. If Rock's daughter knows he's been talking about the time she got kicked out of high school, he probably didn't get a gift for Father's Day.
He talked proudly of his parents and the challenges they faced, including having to go to a veterinarian to get their teeth fixed. It was far from the funniest material of the evening. But it was also the most interesting.
Rock could easily phase out the personal anecdotes as he inches closer to a taped performance, and stick instead to his sure-fire sermons on the sins of America. But these days, the comedian seems more interested in taking the road less traveled.
In just the past two years, he's starred in a "Saw" movie and played a fairly humorless gangster in the "Fargo" TV series. Later this year, he portrays civil rights activist Roy Wilkins in the dramatic film "Rustin."
My hunch is that Rock will get even more introspective in the next few months. And that probably means more thoughts on that Slap.