Appearing near the start of the show, the Academy Award-winning star of West Side Story performed snippets of "Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves” and “We Are Family,” before transitioning into an ~original~ number.
Yes, DeBose began rapping — such as it was — about the women nominated in a variety of categories.
The baffling rap included special shout-outs to each of the female actors nominated, as well as some painfully awkward reaction shots that the director included presumably to increase our discomfort.
Honestly, if you can watch this without grimacing, you're a stronger person than me.
You know what? I take it back. The reaction shots were perfect.
Because how else...
Would you capture...
The performance was called "cringe"...for obvious reasons.
People couldn't believe what they were watching.
And many wondered exactly why an Oscar winner would agree to it.
Of course, it goes without saying that the best, most instantly iconic part was DeBose saying, "Angela Bassett did the thing," as she performed a little dance movement that looked like she was being electrocuted.
Oh, excuse me. I should have written, "AN-JUH-LAH BASSIT."
People were haunted by the line.
The line was everywhere.
What exactly was the thing?
I have no idea. But there's no denying that Angela Bassett did it.
Well, the organizers of the show felt that all the jokes were a bit much. Producer Nick Bullen told Variety that he felt the mockery was "incredibly unfair" to DeBose, who, Bullen said, had “put the whole piece together” with her team.
"Everybody I’ve spoken to who was in the room absolutely loved it. She’s a huge star. She was amazing," Bullen said, adding that their mission was to bring some energy and diversity to the show.
DeBose even appeared to deactivate her Twitter account after the performance.
But we want to say thank you, Ariana DeBose, for spreading important awareness about Angela Bassett Doing The Thing.