Pepsi pulled its offensive ‘protest’ ad & apologized to Kendall Jenner


Yesterday, we discussed the offensive, misguided, ridiculous and stupid Pepsi commercial starring the one and only Kendall Jenner. The whole concept of the ad was pretty stupid: Kendall plays a ditzy model who sees protesters marching past her modeling shoot, she decides to take off her wig and saunter around the protesters and then she hands a Pepsi to a cop. Here’s the ad once again:

Obviously, people were like “this is some white nonsense.” For about 24 hours, Pepsi stuck with their decision and stood by the commercial, claiming that: “This is a global ad that reflects people from different walks of life coming together in a spirit of harmony, and we think that’s an important message to convey.” Turns out, not so much. Pepsi pulled the ad off YouTube after a day and issued an apology:

Pepsi has pulled an ad featuring Kendall Jenner a day after it debuted. The ad, which depicted the model joining a march and handing a can of Pepsi to a police officer, incited the wrath of the Twitterverse, with critics calling it tone-deaf and disrespectful to movements like #BlackLivesMatter. The beverage maker issued this statement on Tuesday morning, apologizing for the ad, which has been pulled from YouTube.

“Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace, and understanding. Clearly we missed the mark and we apologize. We did not intend to make light of any serious issue. We are pulling the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologize for putting Kendall Jenner in this position.”

[From Variety]

Yeah, they missed the mark. Big time. What I don’t understand is the hunker-down mentality of the first 24 hours after the commercial debuted. Did Pepsi’s advertising team sit around, reading Twitter and the overwhelmingly awful reviews of the commercial and think, “Eh, whatever”?

Meanwhile, People Magazine had a story in which Kendall Jenner was making this all about Kendall. A source told People that: “Kendall would have been absolutely mortified. Anything offensive is just not her. She means well, always. She would have called Kris SO upset and freaking out. And then Kris would go into mom mode and approach it like, ‘Let’s do something about this, NOW.’” So I guess Lucifer’s Homegirl called up Pepsi and was like “YOU NEED TO APOLOGIZE TO KENDALL!” And so that’s what Pepsi did? Ugh.


Screencaps from Pepsi.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

97 Responses to “Pepsi pulled its offensive ‘protest’ ad & apologized to Kendall Jenner”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Loopy says:

    Apologise to Kendall? They still don’t get it…and does Kris really have that much clout to tell off a global brand and demand an apology for her daughter?

    • Runcmc says:

      This might be too devious but…now we’re talking about Kendall more than Pepsi. Perhaps they included her in the apology as a subtle “tie her name to every bit of this”?

      Or maybe I’ve been watching too much House of Cards…

      • Esmom says:

        I think it’s totally plausible. I feel like if it the spot had a generic/no name star at its center, they wouldn’t be apologizing to her. And I’m still trying to figure out why they owe her an apology…that’s weird.

      • Craven says:

        Its not a matter of “owing her an apology”. No celeb obviously wants this kind of thing to stick to their brand. Every celeb would try to find a way to distance themselves from it. Enter Lucifers Homegirl. I would love to know how Kris managed to get Pepsi to give her that distance. I suspect there were inplicit or explicit threats about how the entire Kardashian brand would be mobilised to extract Kendall and position her as victim to an insensitive conglomerate. And while the Kardashians are limited by reach and credibility, a Kardashian campaign against Pepsi would keep the stupid ad in discussion for a long long time. Pepsi just wants to forget this sordid mess so they caved and hope we move on in a day or two.

      • WeAreAllMadeofStars says:

        Or too much Keeping Up With the Kardashians…

      • teacakes says:

        @Runcmc – Pepsi leaked that she was offered approval on the final ad but didn’t bother with it.

        They’re clearly not bothered with trying to save the surplus Kardashian’s reputation, if they go down she goes down too.

    • Susie says:

      Clearly she does.

    • Sarah says:

      All I got out of this was, “Apologize to Kendall???” WTF??? Kendall has her own mind, she used poor judgement on this, too. She was COMPLICIT. (ha, love that!) She should be apologizing to Americans, not Pepsi covering her multimillion $$ butt.

    • jwoolman says:

      Oh, I’m sure her paycheck covered a lot of apologies.

  2. Tate says:

    I can only imagine the wrath of lucifer’s homegirl yesterday. 😮

    • Esmom says:

      Presumably she knew what the ad’s concept was prior to its airing. She only cares because it was so negatively received? Too little, too late. Not to mention I’m sure the paycheck was cashed with no problem.

      • Cherise says:

        Yes. She was not only completely in the know..she promoted it on her social media until the backlash set in. As did Kendall.

      • Lucy says:

        She might not have know prior. I worked for the production company that worked on several of Pepsi’s commercials and the way it went then is the stars sign a deal to appear in the commercials but the idea hasn’t been thought out yet. There are clauses in the contracts that state what a celebrity wouldn’t be willing to do but the deals are often inked months prior to the actual idea being put together.

      • Mel M says:

        I agree, I saw the tweet where she was thanking Pepsi for letting Kendall be the star of the ad. She sounded very happy with it then when she thought Kendall was going to be the new Pepsi It girl. Wonder if that was deleted as well?

  3. Shambles says:

    Lol that People story.

    Because poor Kendall is a victim here, one who can do no wrong.

    Bullshit. People see through that. Take some responsibility, and then people might actually like you and support your work. But she’s just a transparent brat.

    • Nike says:

      When celebs pick a side in this conversation in order to cash a check, the truth is… they’re trying to get away with something. And when they get called out for that, they are NOT the victims.

      And when they cry victim, that’s just one more facet of their selfish world view rearing its ugly head. They do not want to know why people are upset – they didn’t care before, they don’t care now. They only care that these ‘mean’ comments are hurting their image.

  4. Suki says:

    She’s had her lips done?

    I really hope this trend dies. It looks so disgusting, strong word, but it really does.

    • Shambles says:

      It never looks good. I have never seen natural or attractive looking lip injections.

    • Megan says:

      I had an allergic reaction yesterday and my lip swelled to the size of Kylie’s. Every time I looked in the mirror I was taken aback by how freaky I looked. I don’t know how she can stand it.

    • AnnaKist says:

      Yes, new lips. She looks like a completely different person in the blonde wig; the lips look thinner and the eyebrows don’t look the same. How did she suddenly go from the silver dress to denims? The ad is disgusting, and all she and her madam, I mean, manager, saw were the dollars, global exposure and possibly icon status. As if. . Pepsi pulled the ad, but I’m willing to bet they still don’t know why so many people are pissed off.

    • WhichWitch says:

      She had them done some time last year iirc and pretended it was Kylie who overlined her lips LOL

    • teacakes says:

      yep, those are some really unnatural-looking fillers on her.

      I’ll be surprised if she keeps the high fashion jobs for much longer after this, Gigi seems to be more hired/talked about in that field anyway.

    • Chetta B. says:

      What’s more hilarious is that Kim denies them and they’re so obvious it’s actually hilarious! I have to laugh when I see her talk, LOL.

      • Fleur says:

        I definitely think she had them done. When will this trend END? I have naturally full lips, and honestly this doesn’t make my life any better. Do I mind them? No. But lip injections are so common now, I do worry people might think my mouth is fake. I don’t get why people feel the need to buy them. I have never had anyone date me just because he liked my mouth. It doesn’t make you more or less feminine, sexy, anything. In fact, I never get comments on my mouth, even from the guys I date. Guys are more interested in your smile than the size of your lips. I love the way small lips look and feel. I think thinner lips are sweet and cute and sexy, much better for kissing! I feel like I’m all mouth when I kiss, so I really don’t see what the appeal is.

  5. Mia4s says:

    But Kendall’s kept the money she’s made for it? Nope sorry, no pass. She’s as trashy the rest of her famewhore family.

    • BengalCat2000 says:

      Perhaps if she donated the $ she got from this ill informed gig I might have respect for her.

      • Mia4s says:

        Exactly. I wouldn’t say that if this was some brand new model, or a working actress surviving in indie film, I get it, you’re paying your rent. But this girl? She’s a millionaire. Unless she donates the money I think at best she did not learn anything and it worst she fully complicit in this trash.

    • teacakes says:

      There are reports out saying she was ‘devastated’ by the fact the ad was pulled.

      But like someone on ontd said, not devastated enough to donate the money she made for it.

  6. Brunswickstoval says:

    This is one of the funniest things I’ve read on the internet about this

  7. Kiki says:

    They are just the most pathetic and ridiculous family in the past decade that we know them. Kendall should apologize to all of us not the whole way around. I think the Kardashians -Jenner clan wants to get back into the spotlight again but that’s not going to happen under Prez Donald Trump watch.

    • RussianBlueCat says:

      This is actually the most attention that family has got since Trump was sworn into office. Demon mother must be going crazy trying to get people to turn away from the grifters in the White House and back to her family of grifters

  8. grabbyhands says:

    Apparently being tone deaf and offensive just wasn’t enough for Pepsi, so they decided to double down by apologizing to Kendull and blatantly lying about what an insensitive crash grab that spot was.

    And I just can’t with people giving Kendull a pass on this. She doesn’t get credit for being a unaware moron. She’s an adult and the fact that she isn’t bright, or that PMK put her up to this doesn’t fly with me. The Kardashian brand of slacktivism has real, negative side effects. I swear to god, the amount of praise these tricks get when they occasionally do the bare minimum is pathetic.

  9. Ozzy says:

    So, apologize to Kendall but not to the people whose experiences they’ve completely trivialized? Right.

    • Esmom says:

      I know. WTF?

    • sendepause says:

      That would require to see minorities as actual people in the fist place but as the spot proves they clearly don´t. Fighting for ones lives and rights is just some kind of a fun rave happening to them.

      And it´s not like they´ve apologized to the cello dude and the photographer lady — only the white girl matters.

      Also it freaks me out how empty Kendal´s facial “expressions” are. No-one is there there. But so is the message of the commercial, so I guess she was a perfect choice…

    • Nike says:


      Wrong apology, showing where all their interest lies.

  10. iris west-allen says:

    Pepsi’s internal and external marketing teams should be fired.

    Most organizations test their ads before airing.

    Either they failed to take feedback, didn’t get feedback, or whatever this is a major fail.

    Glad I never drink Pepsi.

    • chaine says:

      So I finally actually watched the ad. Wow, it is waaay worse than I imagined. I just can’t even figure out how even a bunch of white dudes in a marketing tower in NYC could be that clueless… If no one had told me this was a legit ad campaign I would have thought Kendall was the guest star for Saturday Night Live and that this ad was an SNL skit.

  11. Eleonor says:

    Someone got fired at Stanley Cooper Draper Price….

  12. Missy says:

    The part where she hands the wig to the black woman….I’m speechless that nobody say how offensive people would find this.

  13. Akku says:

    Why is she being infantalized? We POC have to grow up and understand the consequences of every single thing we do from childhood, but Kendall Jenner has to be apologised to like she’s a toddler who was forcibly coerced into making something she didn’t understand? Bullsh*t. She, and her mother, were promoting, hashtagging and cooing over the premiere of this like crazy until the backlash hit.

    At least we can, hopefully, rule out a career as an actress when modelling loses its lustre for her. Wooden doesn’t even begin to cover it. But then again, if Delavingne can get roles….

    • mermaid says:

      Exactly. Just the other week I commented on the strength WOC must have/use to get through every damn day.
      Again, last couple of days – this appalling ad, and the FBI trying to memorialise Dr King. It’s not tone-deafness. They honestly do not give a piece of shite.
      And that’s two major things – let alone all the million little things. Utterly bone-wearyingly exhausting just to exist.

    • WhichWitch says:

      I know but she’s a poor little white girl trying to do good, can’t you see that? She’s just a victim of the big bad corporation that paid her millions and that she was happy to shill for for exposure. But she only wants to do good!

      • Nike says:

        I’m reminded of Taylor Swift’s antics…

        These women are old enough to be held responsible for their choices – they’re not children. They can deal, learn, change, and educate from a position of power… but they don’t want to.


        Preserving the image they’ve so carefully crafted is paramount in their thoughts.

      • chaine says:

        You called it, @Nike!

    • WeAreAllMadeofStars says:

      Very well said.

    • jwoolman says:

      None of the Kardashians have acting skills. They aren’t even convincing playing themselves in a scripted pseudoreality show.

      They’ll all pretty clueless and shallow. So I wouldn’t expect any of them to recognize that the ad was rather odd and pretty much guaranteed to be badly received by many people. They just don’t have much experience with people outside their very narrow circle, and also mostly are severely undereducated so they haven’t had to defend their beliefs to people who grew up in very different circumstances. Can’t expect a blind man to distinguish colors.

  14. littlemissnaughty says:

    So she means well. She never wants to offend. People need to STOP this crap because since when is intent the only thing you’re judged on? I’m sure most drunk drivers didn’t MEAN to kill anyone. It doesn’t change the outcome at all.

  15. OriginallyBlue says:

    I wonder how many people got their asses handed to them over at PepsiCo? They were all proud of the commercial until they got dragged and called out.

    I’m sure they were thinking it would be well received but Kendull deleted all tweets and retweets about the ad. Of all the nepotism “models” out there and real models I don’t know why they chose her.

  16. Sam says:

    Kris Jenner and her maleficant looking self is probably seething because this didn’t go as planned for her no good untalented daughter Kendall.

    • Maria F. says:

      totally. I do not even mind the apology, because they PULLED the ad… so there goes her ‘Cindy Crawford’ moment. She will always have a tainted connection with commercials… I cannot help to feel a teeny tiny bit of Schadenfreude.

  17. caran says:

    I would love to see Kendall donate the millions she received to do this commercial to charity. Instead of demanding an apology.

    • sendepause says:

      Because she is such a good person and wouldn´t sell her soul a heartbeat? Good one!

    • WeAreAllMadeofStars says:

      Yes. If she has the self-awareness to pull away from her mother and rebuild her image after this, she should donate some money to related causes. Her family is clearly interested in black culture, why not donate to the NAACP or such?

  18. Alleycat says:

    That people story is absolutely ridiculous. Was she just drugged the whole time she shot the scenes for this commercial? How can she act shocked by the outcome? And I highly doubt she was the reason this got pulled. Side note: now that she got more plastic surgery, kendull looks just like kris.

    • Alexandria says:

      She can genuinely act shocked because she genuinely doesn’t know any better, being in the privileged position that she is. She probably read the script and said ‘Cool.’ I doubt this episode would make her educate herself. Anyway negative publicity has always kept the Ks in the news, which is most important to them.

  19. Patricia says:

    Pepsi needs to just stay in their lane. You sell fizzy, seemingly addictive (from what I’ve seen) diabetes elixir. Find some way to sell that shit that actually mentions what it is you are selling. This advertising sucks every which way.

    Also I’m so annoyed by Kendall’s limp wrist. Are you too precious and apathetic to even properly hold a can of Pepsi?! I know it’s the least offensive aspect of this ad but… man she really bugs me.

    • Rose says:

      I noticed that too! But also the cello guy seemed incapable of holding his properly either.

    • WhichWitch says:

      That really bothered me! You’re not having a drink by the pool with your friends. That is not the way you hold a can when you’re in a crowd. YOU ARE HOLDING THE ACTUAL PRODUCT YOU ARE SELLING. Phew.
      And this is from a fellow T-Rex-Wrist owner

  20. courtney says:

    they are the brain dead ones to even have had a Kardashian/Jenner in the ad in the first place. why should they have apologized to her why not go back to an actual star they’ve used in ads previously for example Tim McGraw & Faith Hill for whom they’ve also sponsored past tours

  21. Barrett says:

    This ad is so bad and for Kendall to participate she’s an accomplice. It’s like karlie kloss in geisha garb unless your really dumb you should pick up on that you should decline participation!

  22. Almondjoy says:

    Apologize to the mothers who’s son’s lives were ripped from them at the hands of police brutality.

    Apologize to Ieshia Evans who was thrown in jail and treated as a criminal for peacefully protesting (why didn’t she have a Pepsi on hand?! What was she thinking?!)

    Apologize to those who are out there fighting for justice EVERY DAY. Those who are terrified that they might not see their husbands, sons, fathers etc come home at the end of the day. (If my awesome amazing 6ft tall dark skinned husband isn’t home within 5 mins of the time he usually gets in I freak out)

    Do NOT apologize to Kendall Jenner, who comes from a gross family who think it’s ok to capitalize off the struggles of others.

  23. TyrantDestroyed says:

    She should never try to be an actress, her facial expressions are ridiculous as the Pepsi commercial is.

    • Kitten says:

      Again, I know that isn’t the most important takeaway from the commercial but her “expressions” and acting ability are literally nonexistent.
      I’m not surprised given her inability to emote in print ads. Still…yikes…

      • teacakes says:

        Her new lip fillers make it even worse.

        She was dead-eyed even when she’d had only a nose job, now it’s so unnatural-looking I legit wonder if brands are blind to it. I mean, obvious fillers aren’t very stylish.

  24. Sassback says:

    Of course they had to apologize to Kendall, it’s like dropping a pre-schooler into a UN Meeting. They said, “We’re going to pay you a ton of money.” And she said,
    “You’re going to make me look good right?” And they said, “You’re a sexy model who decides to drop her vapid fashion photoshoot to help the ethnically-ambiguous and multi-diverse downtrodden.” And she said, “Omigosh, yeah, a bajillion dollars to do that and taste sugar for the first time in ten years, yes, okay.”

  25. IlsaLund says:

    Bernice King’s response was on point:

    Check out @BerniceKing’s Tweet:

  26. Hazel says:

    Let’s stop enabling this family please! Don’t watch their show, don’t follow them on Instagram.

  27. Ashley Nate says:

    So they apologize to Kendall, and not the people they actually offended? Yup Pepsi really is a racist pos

  28. Amelie says:

    The thing about this is you KNOW this will be a storyline on Keeping up with the Kardashians. I’m half a mind this whole thing was orchestrated by Kris to give Kendall a bigger storyline since she doesn’t get much air time since she is pretty boring in comparison to her siblings. I know that is not the case, Kris is not involved in the production of Pepsi commercials, her influence is not that powerful. But they are going to milk this controversy for ratings like everything else and it’ll be all about Poor Kendall instead of how ignorant can you be to star in this kind of commercial. I didn’t think the commercial was that bad until I realized the focus was this white glamorous model and her experience of the protest and then realized Pepsi was capitalizing on the protest movement which was been a trend for a few years, and even more so under the Trump presidency. I haven’t drunk Pepsi in years and now I definitely don’t start planning to.

  29. purple prankster says:

    i thought the manrepeller article was awful and unfunny, so white women are the most woke ever? (since they specified man of color I guess every other character was white) yet Kendall the star of the ad is white

  30. DahliaDee says:

    How much are you willing to bet they’re not pulling it from other parts of the world? Because I live in Europe, and ads like Pepsi’s and Nivea’s are par for the course.

  31. Paris says:

    Boycott The Kardashians!
    Boycott The Jenners!

  32. me says:

    It aired last night on TV during the show Blackish. I thought it got pulled but they still showed it.

    I read somewhere yesterday that the commercial was actually shot in Asia.

    • jwoolman says:

      Uh… interesting choice! Wonder what the cast and writers etc. thought of that. Hope somebody asks or tweets.

  33. Margo S. says:

    Lol at this mess.

  34. Fatninja says:

    This may look like corporate incompetence, but that’s just what Dr Pepper wants you to think!

    False flag! Open your eyes sheeple!

  35. Amanda DG says:

    I love Pepsi, but boy that commercial was cringeworthy. I wonder how and why so many within that company thought it would be a good idea? So out of touch.

  36. Marianne says:

    Am I the only one who didnt think the commercial was THAT bad? Like sure, it was kind of cheesy to suggest that Pepsi will unite us all, and maybe it wasn’t the best idea to try and capitalize off people activism…but I dunno. They were trying to convey something positive, so I cant really hate on them too much.

    • mermaid says:

      It is that bad

    • jwoolman says:

      It hits many people oddly for many reasons. Pepsi also seems to think older people don’t need caffeine…. But people are dying and getting seriously injured, so making it seem as though all the police need to change their behavior is to drink some Pepsi with a Kardashian just has a very wrong feel to it. It also trivializes protest in general in an era when the POTUS and state legislatures are trying to suppress protest and send people to prison for peaceful assembly.

      The intention was obviously good, but this just isn’t the time for this. They should have had another theme without overtones of funerals and politically-motivated felonies.

  37. jwoolman says:

    Kendall isn’t the brightest bulb on the tree and very likely is out of touch beyond her rich circle of friends. I doubt that she understood why the ad was offensive and so off the mark, so she really had no basis for refusing to do it. But I’m surprised Pepsi didn’t test it better with a variety of audiences before launching.

  38. blonde555 says:

    I don’t know why but kendall reminds me of quasimodo.

  39. ... says:

    if not for the wig handing, i think this ad is actually kind of sweet. and kendall is not that bad actress, i’ve seen worse. i liked it. but…who still drinks pepsi???