A couple of days ago, Pepsi released its latest protest-themed advert and it received heavy criticism from the public.
In response to the huge backlash, the multinational corporation decided to pull the controversial ad. According to Ad Age, the new campaign featuring Kendall Jenner had been planned to run globally across TV and digital platforms.
In a statement, the brand said, “Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace, and understanding. Clearly we missed the mark, and we apologise. We did not intend to make light of any serious issue. We are removing the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologise for putting Kendall Jenner in this position.”
Created by PepsiCo’s in-house content creation department, Creators League Studio., the video features a group of young activists of all races marching on a street. Jenner, who can be seen having an outdoor photoshoot, joins the crowd and hands one of the cops a can of Pepsi. The (rather attractive) officer takes a sip and all is peaceful.
Seriously, Pepsi? We’re no advertising expert, but we don’t think that’s what “global unity” means.
— Pepsi (@pepsi) April 5, 2017
Many netizens were angered by Pepsi’s new ad and some even called it “the worst ad of all time”. Bernice King, daughter of Martin Luther King Jr, tweeted, “If only daddy would have known about the power of Pepsi.”
Meanwhile, actress Lena Dunham said, “Assuming everything that can be said about faux-test Pepsi ad has been said so I’m just gonna go with this: it didn’t make me want Pepsi.”
Other celebrity responses include:
Rex Tillerson sent Kim Jung-un a Pepsi and has no further comment. Plus, Quarter Pounders will be fresh beef next year. So relax, America.
— Jeffrey Wright (@jfreewright) April 5, 2017
While this campaign is wrong, calling this ad "tone-deaf" is also degrading for us Deaf people.
Thank you. https://t.co/Mt2X3M1Wjj
— Nyle DiMarco (@NyleDiMarco) April 5, 2017
I suppose this is why the Pepsi commercial is a bit troubling, from Micheal Meade. pic.twitter.com/A5HqEtP2XQ
— Russell Brand (@rustyrockets) April 5, 2017
However, TV host Stephen Colbert had something positive to say about the ad.
During the latest episode of “The Late Show”, he said, “We have a deeply divided nation. But today, it seems that everyone has come together to join the protest against the new protest ad from Pepsi.”
#WellPlayed, Stephen Colbert.
What do you think about the new Pepsi ad? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below!