Twitter Rips Pepsi, Kendall Jenner for ‘Tone-Deaf’ Protest Commercial

In an attempt to court a politically active younger demographic, Pepsi may have instead set them off.

A new ad for the soft drink stars Kendall Jenner as a high-fashion model, donning a blonde wig in the midst of a protest. It’s not clear what the protest is supposed to be about — many of the signs read general phrases like “Join the conversation” and “love.”

Beckoned by one of the protesters, Jenner eventually rips off her blonde wig and joins the fray. Grabbing a can of Pepsi, she heads toward one of the grim-faced police officers, and hands him a drink. He accepts and smiles, eliciting cheers from the crowd.

It’s hard not to compare the image of Jenner handing the can to the police officer to the award-winning photo from a Baton Rouge, La., protest against police brutality last July. In it, Ieshia Evans can be seen, calm and collected, offering her hands for arrest to a group of riot-gear-clad police officers.

In the YouTube description for the commercial, titled “Live for Now Moments Anthem,” Pepsi calls it “a short film about the moments when we decide to let go, choose to act, follow our passion and nothing holds us back.” It features “Lions” by Skip Marley.

Following the release of the ad, Pepsi quickly began trending in the U.S. on Twitter, as many social media users ripped it to shreds. Reactions ranged from humorous jabs (“Hi, I’m Rachel Dolezal for Crystal Pepsi”) to calls for whoever greenlit the commercial to be fired.

See a few of the tweets below.

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  1. Those untalented hacks (The Jenners and Kardashians) would do anything to stay relevant. Virtue signalling idiots.

  2. almasjacob1234567890 says:

    This ad is quite disturbing and it is anti protest anti free speech. it is mocking people who stand for their rights. sad.

  3. PPVela says:

    Pepsi had run a anti-protest campaign successfully in India in 2015 and this was thematic replica of the same commercial.

    In 2015, India, a wave of protest spread across the educational institutions in India. A movement against the intolerance of the newly formed right-wing government interfering in autonomy of institutions. A full scale social media war followed. This was suppressed by the government and the repercussions of this suppression of descent is still felt in the politics even today.

    Pepsi was insensitive in 2015 and thought they might get away again. Thankfully it was not to be.

  4. Pepsi should have been smarter than that! They should have known better. Then they had the “nerve” to put someone as naive and ignorant as Kendal Jenner to star in a commercial that supposedly brings minorities together in peacefully with the police. They could have at least have been smarter enough to at least put a minority like an afro american, Mexican or Arabian person to do the commercial . They chose Kendal, another “bimbo”, shameless Kardashian. American young people need to stay idolizing this family that has no ethics at all including dumb dumb Kanye West.

  5. wtfnrants says:

    This entire controversy is just about as stupid as most “controversies” now days. What the fuck is peoples problems? Why can’t they just accept the fact that this isn’t even bad? Personally I don’t believe in Police Brutality, people tend to look at misrepresented statistics and strawmen and riot/protest over them. The fact that these people are over reacting to something that is clearly meant to bring peace and civility even though the issue isn’t necessarily real are just begging for attention.

    Also, may seem like this post has something to do with that last sentence there but it isn’t. I just wanted to post my opinion for my own sake.

  6. halima from north philly says:

    We’ve seen black women erasure as a liberation model..
    this ad was a oblivious White Wash of the African Struggle against WHITE RACISM and the pain and struggle of nonwhite peoples against police brutality…police VIOLENCE upon Black resistance to police brutality is real not a money coopted tv ad….,it was a WHITE WASH of the pain and resistance to genocide on the part of the Black Community by the occupying force/ army of the police..

  7. ARty says:

    THIS IS NOT offensive. It is not an issue. They’re showing unity, which is what everyone wants, and BLM has a bowel movement and states it’s undermining them? They undermine themselves.

  8. Pringles says:

    Sure, this is terrible and it’s offensive but only in that’s it’s such a lame commercial. All these snowflakes are so god damned sensitive about everything. We are fostering a generation of thin skinned, weak, cry babies. Grow up people. Find something better to do with your time other than sulking in rainbow tears over this silly product placement.

  9. amer phar says:

    Poor, poor little Kendall. Black people won’t let her be black OR white now. First they’re biotching about her wearing cornrows, which they apparently want reserved for only black people. They resented her “acting black.” Now she acts WHITE, doing what they perceive white people would do, and they biotch about THAT. It appears they feel Kendall needs to stay colorless and hang in limbo to satisfy them. BTW, Pepsi should have stuck to their guns and kept the ad going. Why? I’ll tell you why: Where was all the “we despise prejudice” attitude from these folks biotching when Beyonce and JayZ were reportedly hosting an award show VIP room party whose “bouncers” where systematically rejecting white people from entering because those were their orders for guarding the room? That VIP room was loaded with people, and not a white face among them. Every time they perceive someone was discriminated against, it’s NEVER anyone in that scenario but a BLACK person. They’re not out for EQUALITY for ALL, just for they’re own kind it seems. When THEY start sticking up for WHITE PEOPLE in those same circumstances, maybe they’ll see more white people defending THEM, they way they apparently think they are OWED just by the virtue of being BLACK. It should be owed to EVERYONE who is treated unfairly. ALL lives matter, not just theirs, and putting on black panther halftime shows and destroying/rioting cities when you’re angry is NOT helping the cause.

  10. controversy starring controversy is going to bridge the market gap

  11. Rodney Howard says:

    I’m just here to point out the fact that the writer of this story delusionallythinks that this girl deserves a mention in the same realm as, Cindy Crawford. Puleez

  12. Fred Vonfirstenberg says:

    I didn’t​ read this article. What I know about this came from other sources.

    Here’s the reality.

    It’s s television commercial.

    They are selling soda pop.

    It “stars” someone who is famous for being famous.

    It plays off a photo of a female protestor.

    There’s more important problems to discuss than this jibber jabber.

    Move along.

    • Henkka Viiri says:

      I agree with this guy here. You know world is going downhill when people still find time to complain this much about something like this.

  13. Guy who can't Act says:

    Um where are the fat people? I’m furious us fatty’s weren’t represented. I’ve got the skin folds and diabetes to prove I drink this product by the gallon each day and get no love in return. Pffff, I’m switching back tang!

  14. Reese says:

    The entire 2:39 min ad is actually pretty good until there’s emphasis on the police officers. Kendall giving one officer a pepsi kind of defeats the purpose of people coming together from all walks of life to protest and unite towards a greater cause. Honestly don’t know why they chose Kendall to be in this type of ad but that’s none of my business. Police/citizen relations are very rocky right now and I don’t think policemen being in there really said anything inspiring like pepsi thought. They should’ve just had kendall take a sip after she joined the group and ended it there.

  15. Theresa says:

    Seriously, its a commercial, and it is accomplishing its purpose, getting Pepsi’s name out. All I see is Pepsi trying to say let leave the crap behind and be equal.
    Are there really so many snowflakes, and butt hurt people out there, that they are now finding issues with 30 second commercials?

  16. Aleric says:

    Nothing says revolution like an entitled white rich girl who has been given everything in life encouraging people to riot. Way to go Pepsi.

  17. Sam says:

    this is nuts!! nothing like making the police look bad… world is against them as it is.. now with this AD .. well use to drink Pepsi but not now… my husband is a police officer

  18. Jose says:

    Kendall: Here is a Pepsi!
    Cop: Thanks! NOW BACK THE FUCK UP!

  19. Anne Sarah says:

    Maybe now that you’ve been targeted with large corporate ads you might realize it’s all joke. No one takes #TheResistance seriously. People are literally creating business models and consumer ad campaigns targeting the outrage culture. You are not a movement, you’re a business opportunity. Let that sink in my fellow Millenials. Stop resisting and learn to love the Patriarchy. Join the adults. It’s time.

  20. Ricky says:

    it’s fine.
    BTW, and WHAT are they protesting about EXACTLY? Don’t they all have jobs to go to?

  21. SoTxJoe says:

    i admit today’s climate is the fault of us parents for not teaching our children respect, history, or appropriate behavior. All i see in these phony “protests” and the leftist liberal socialist democrat media, since they won’t get on board with America, are animals that probably need to be put down.

    • Joe Shines says:

      Hey there Joe…you are right about one thing. It is your fault. It’s parents like you that actually aren’t educated and believe this swill about “phony” protests and “leftist liberal socialist democrat media.” If that’s not bad enough…you seem to imply protesters are animals that need to be put down. Wow…I mean, what if it was your children or family members protesting? Should THEY be put down? Of course not…because for people like you, you only care about your own. But who knows, one day one of your own may be deemed by another as an animal that needs to be put down… Watch what you teach your children, actually pick up a history books and stop relying on right-wing media to tell you how to think. If you knew ANYTHING about America, you would know we have an honored history of protest which brought us so many of those freedoms you enjoy today down there in south Texas.

    • Anne Sarah says:

      Our schools are indoctrinating our children with Marxist revolutionary garbage. When you constantly tell Americans and Europeans that their culture is racist and rewrite history with an anti-colonial bias, this is what you get: an anti-capitalist generation far removed from the context of their heritage teeming with guilt for the sins of their forefathers. Thank God Generation Z can look at Millenials, the biggest losers, and realize something is very wrong. A return to traditionalism is under way. Just wait.

      • Joe Shines says:

        I’d like to know what winning generation you were a part of Anne Sarah? Hmm? There is so much bullshit in your statement it’s clearly you had minimal education. But more than anything…no…a return to traditionalism in the way you want it will never happen, but there are always people like you wanting to hold back change. And people who do, always lose. So I guess that makes you a loser.

      • dagnabbit5 says:

        Until commonsense parents and teachers take back the schools and universities, nothing will change.

  22. Michael says:

    I thought it was well made. A good ad. Pepsi has absolutely nothing to apologies for. It is the people who find fault in literally anything that does not jive with their narrow views that need to take a look at themselves.

  23. Anna Kreski says:

    Maybe one day consumers will not be taken in by the mind game of marketing. Crafty marketing execs selling a drink and making it seem like purposeful achievement. The only constant is that all the soda manufacturers are doing is selling poison. Even Starbucks with their chemically laden flavorings. smh

  24. Sjohn says:

    The kardashians should do an ad campaign for the coal industry. The irony would be precious.

  25. Ounce Oflogic says:

    It is always puzzling when a publicly owned major company chooses to offend half of its customers and potential customers. I would think/hope it would be equally puzzling to INVESTORS in said company.

  26. Susan Laremore says:

    The Pepsi ad struck a cord with me but in an entirely different way. I am a graduate of Kent State University who was present during the 1970 shooting. It so reminded me of Allison, who was one of the Kent State victims. During the student rioting, Allison gave a flower to one of the National Guards. The scene in this Pepsi ad definitely paralleled this events for me.

  27. Just One Guy Watching in Cali says:

    Colin Kaepernick ended his protest, after saying he’d take a knee until the systemic injustices inherent in American criminal justice were resolved. So, I guess that’s all handled now. (Thanks, Colin.) Now I’m Kendall Jenner’s soft drink distribution, on behalf of every possible special interest demographic Pepsi could imagine, has sewn the seeds of harmony and dialogue. I’m so grateful that our celebrity geniuses are able to selflessly embrace the populist causes of their day, when so many over-indulged, 1%-er celebrities would exploit the troubles of our nation and its people for their own benefit. Thank goodness we have such brilliant moral icons.

  28. Fed Up says:

    Stupid crap. Won’t be buying Pepsi anymore. Any Kardashian is an idiot looking for money and publicity and they know nothing about social injustice or anything else. Young people get stupider all the time.

  29. Ralph Davis says:

    Who is Kendall Jenner and why should I care?

  30. joan says:

    Well it succeeded in what it was meant to accomplish. .we are all talking about pepsi..good job

  31. rytwinger says:

    Whatever, I wouldn’t even have a sip of pepsi poison if I was dying of thirst….

  32. mawendt says:

    Ummmm… no.

    Having been around the 99% and BLM ‘protests’, I can safely say they are nothing like Pepsi portrays them.

    Rather, they are a lot of ugly people acting ugly. Intimidating, scary, and chaotic. Unlawful. I’ve yet to see a stringed instrument, other than an acoustic guitar, among them.

    From now on, I drink Coke.

  33. Sam Jones says:

    Hard to believe this is the company that Don Kendall created.

  34. Alex says:

    For Christ’s Sake people! It’s a stupid ad for a soft drink. It’s not real!

  35. Poor Snowflakes! EVERYTHING “triggers” them, hurting their widdle feelings.

  36. Ted Boland says:

    Ah Hollywood and corporate America, you are as cynical and mercenary as ever.

  37. Cntrlfrk says:

    .
    It’s hilarious to see a perpetually offended generation erupt in faux rage over a Pepsi commercial. Their idiocy and hypocrisy is an embarrassment to America.

    .

  38. Bill says:

    #BlackCansMatter

  39. SamanthaWoods says:

    Does anyone else see the irony in a Multi-National Corporate Conglomerate that sells worthless unhealthy sugar water all over the world (even to destitute nations starving for nutrition) trying to align itself with pointless self-absorbed protest mongers that supposedly stand against Multi-National Corporate Conglomerates that exploit the third world? Not to mention, the spokesperson here being one of the most coddled, self-absorbed 1%er privileged that is famous for absolutely no reason at all, and wouldn’t be caught dead “slumming” it with the unwashed, a hour after she felt like being trendy and hightails it back to luxury comfort of the Hollywood Hills?

    Lets not overlook the brave Muslim woman, throwing her support and faith behind Pepsico. Think about that one for a second.

    Actually… this is hilarious.

  40. joe says:

    The entire Khardashian family is a prime example of the things wrong in this country.

  41. Theme is obviously mulitculturalism which means open borders. What an asinine and sad commentary on today’s youth that Pepsi sought to sell soda on the naivete of too many young people today.

  42. Sigmund says:

    The left is wacked and Bruce Jenner is psychotic.

  43. tadchem says:

    Pepsi chose the wrong side in this game.

  44. aominous2000 says:

    UR in the Pepsi generation and I’m a pimply freak

  45. If it ain’t virtue signalling, then it nuthin’ at all, yo.

  46. Mr. Boneman says:

    She should have held out for Mr. Pibb money.

  47. Linden Bonner says:

    This appeared to be a very peaceful march, maybe not so much a protest as a support march. The only explanation for how peaceful it was is that these people are all marching in support of President Donald J. Trump. There were plenty of American Muslims, blacks, Hispanics, and women who voted for Trump. He actually would have lost without their support, and often they have to hide that support of old fashioned patriotism and the rule of law from the people who around them who are so judgmental. This is about coming out as a conservative and asking for a two way conversation about why instead of just knee-jerk reactionism, ostracizing, boycotting, and even violence, as we saw with the mentally impaired man held captive and tortured in Chicago because he supported Trump. This ad is about understanding why Trump supporters love America and why they want to make it great again. Everyone can interpret art any way they like. That’s my interpretation and I’m sticking to it.

    • Kelly says:

      I’ve been to a Trump support march. It wasn’t peaceful and it wasn’t this diverse. I think you’re interruptation is more like a dream.

  48. Marie says:

    I actually found those comments really funny, especially the one from James.

  49. gospaboy says:

    Not a “politically active” generation. It’s a “politically correct” generation. Quite a difference… a tragic difference.

  50. Jay Kerouac says:

    I’m switching from Coke to Pepsi…..because I’m easily-led ;)

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