Kendall Jenner is feeling the wrath of the Twitterverse thanks to her just-released commercial for Pepsi, with critics of the ad bashing it as a sleazy attempt by Madison Avenue to co-opt genuine political activism in order to sell a soft drink.
Titled “Live For Now Moments Anthem” and set to Skip Marley’s “Lions”, the commercial finds the “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” star posing for a photo shoot as a throng of young people march through the streets, carrying signs adorned with such slogans as “Join the Conversation.”
Jenner rips off the platinum-blonde wig she was wearing, ditches the photo shoot and joins the crowd in their march, as a line of police officers stands watching.
Finally, Jenner reaches into an ice-filled bucket and pulls out a can of Pepsi, which she brings to one of the thirsty cops, who happily chugs it. “Live bolder, live louder, live for now,” reads the ad’s concluding message.
Pepsi has since announced they are pulling the controversial ad and the original video is no longer available on YouTube.
“Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace and understanding. Clearly we missed the mark, and we apologize,” the statement reads. “We did not intend to make light of any serious issue. We are removing the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologize for putting Kendall Jenner in this position.”
While the ad may have attempted to tap into the burgeoning political activism that’s catching fire with American youth in the wake of Donald Trump’s election, it seems to be having the opposite effect, based on this sampling of Twitter disses; even “Silicon Valley” star Kumail Nanjiani weighs in.
Following the furor, Pepsi released a statement in defense of the ad: “This is a global ad that reflects people from different walks of life coming together in a spirit of harmony,” reads the statement, “and we think that’s an important message to convey.”
Pepsi also released a statement on Twitter apologizing for the ad: