The description for the episode reads:
“The mother of 12-year-old Rio Allred, who suffered from Alopecia and took her own life after being relentlessly mocked and bullied, opens up about her daughter’s heart-crushing death. A woman who worked in the hair industry for more than a decade reveals her emotional Alopecia journey and why it’s more than ‘just hair.’ A top hair surgeon breaks down the different types of Alopecia. A former NBA player speaks out about his hidden pain.”
However, Jada prefaced the episode with a discussion about what happened in March at the 94th annual Academy Awards.
Jada Pinkett Smith Hopes That Will Smith And Chris Rock Will Have An ‘Opportunity To Heal’
Jada began the episode by explaining that “thousands” have reached out to her with their own stories about alopecia since the Oscars slap. In late March, Chris Rock made a joke about Jada being “G.I. Jane,” which prompted the “King Richard” actor to storm the stage and slap him.
“This is a really important Red Table Talk on alopecia. Considering what I’ve been through with my own health and what happened at the Oscars, thousands have reached out to me with their stories,” Jada began. “I’m using this moment to give our alopecia family an opportunity to talk about what it’s like to have this condition and to inform people about what alopecia actually is.”
She then redirected the talk to Oscar night, revealing that Smith and Rock still have yet to make amends in private.
“Now about Oscar night, my deepest hope is that these two intelligent, capable men have an opportunity to heal, talk this out and reconcile,” Jada continued. “The state of the world today, we need them both. And we all actually need one another more than ever. Until then, Will and I are continuing to do what we have done for the last 28 years, and that’s keep figuring out this thing called life together. Thank you for listening.”
Jada Pinkett Smith Has Yet To Directly Address The Oscars Slap
The comments that Jada made today were the first time that she had directedly addressed the Oscars slap. As The Hollywood Reporter noted, this is the first time that Jada has even mentioned the slap since the season premiere of the Red Table Talk earlier this year.
Before the season debut, a message appeared on the screen that said:
“Considering all that has happened in the last few weeks, the Smith family has been focused on deep healing. Some of the discoveries around our healing will be shared at the table when the time calls.”
It’s unclear at this time if Smith will return to the show to talk about what happened that night. Although he seems reticent to discuss the incident, Jada, her daughter Willow, and her mother Adrienne Banfield Norris, openly discussed alopecia and the importance of giving the community a voice.
Jada said the “most difficult” part of dealing with her condition is that her hair “comes and goes.” A clip from one of her Instagram videos was shared on-screen to show an example of what she called “scarring alopecia.” Jada said that her hair loss condition also gives her anxiety, as she’s left wondering, “What’s my hair going to look like today?” She has previously stated that her alopecia was one of the reasons why she decided to shave her head.
Jada told the Table, “People don’t understand what alopecia is, and they don’t understand the effects of it.”
They sat down with the mother of 12-year-old Rio Allred, who suffered from alopecia and took her own life after being bullied for losing her hair. Rio’s mother, Niki Ball, became emotional as she shared her daughter’s story. She said that the Oscars incident happened only two weeks after her daughter’s death.
“People are going to be Googling, ‘what is alopecia?’ Like ‘what is this that we’ve never heard of?’” she said. “It’s not a joke.”
A woman who has worked as a hairstylist in the beauty industry for more than a decade and Charlie Villanueva, a former NBA player, also shared their own struggles with alopecia. Lastly, a hair surgeon discussed the different types of alopecia that people can experience.