In the segment titled “Boo Are You Wearing in 2022?” from Monday’s episode, the talk show’s wardrobe supervisor Ashley Alderfer-Kaufman presented a series of costumes that were inspired by the most talked about topics in news this year.
As she presented different children in these costumes, Alderfer-Kaufman went on to introduce one person wearing gold bodysuit and had a red handprint on his face, to represent the incident at the Oscars.
“This year, the Oscars made huge headlines,” Alderfer-Kaufman said. “It wasn’t about who won. It was about what happened with this actor, Will Smith, when he went up and slapped Chris Rock.”
She then described the meaning of the costume, explaining: “Now, we do not want to endorse violence of any kind. But we couldn’t help but talk about one of the hottest hot topics this year.”
Alderfer-Kaufman also noted that this costume was the show’s interpretation of the “Oscar slap,” with the all gold bodysuit representing what an Oscar award looks like. The title of the costume was a reference to earlier this year, when Smith went onstage at the awards show and slapped Rock, after he made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair. Prior to the event, the King Richard star’s wife had been vocal about suffering from hair loss due to alopecia.
Along with apologising for his behaviour right after and during the Oscars, Smith also issued a public apology to the comedian on YouTube in July.
In the comments of The View segment on YouTube, multiple people criticised the costume and the program’s attempt to make light out of Smith’s decision to slap Rock.
“The Oscar Slap costume felt a little cringeworthy,” one wrote. “It was in poor taste and the boy looked like he was in literal pain.”
“I was completely disgusted,” another said about the costume. “That is nothing to be celebrated or chuckled at. We show our kids & others it’s ok to laugh at anger & slapping someone.”
Other viewers went on to emphasise that these children shouldn’t have been put in these type of costumes in the first place.
“Wow, I didn’t think any show could go lower than this, but The View managed to do it,” one wrote. “Using kids for your political agenda is about as sick in the mind as you can get. The negativity of this segment is palpable.”
“Super funny making a kid dress up in a costume that represents physical assault, just screams fun,” another sarcastically added.
A third person said: “How is it funny that the adult presenter, Alderfer-Kaufman, gets to dress up as a kid, in a ‘Max’ costume (from Stranger Things).. yet the CHILDREN get paraded all dressed up for Boomer’s adult political fantasy jokes? The ‘Oscar Slap kid’ is heart-breaking.”
The Independent has contacted a representative for The View for comment