In my opinion there are several things wrong with the newest Pepsi ad.
It doesn’t make any damn sense. First of all, no one gets that sweaty playing the cello, I should know, I played the viola for six years and never once did I see anyone in the orchestra sweat like that. Also, people who play the cello do not just carry it around in hopes of a spontaneous jam session, and they definitely don’t bring it to a protest. The odds of that thing getting broken are way too high. Moving away from the cello, there is no way a photoshoot that is more or less taking place outside would not halt production if a protest was happening. Continuing production would put the model, crew, and equipment at risk. I’m not a model so I am not totally positive about this, but I’m pretty sure you can’t just walk off the set to go hang out with some strangers.
Secondly, from a female perspective I find it irritating that the model only left her photo shoot because some cute alternative boy gave her a head nod. Was it too much for Pepsi to have the model decide to join on her own? Did she need to have a male’s approval? Apparently, she did because having a woman think for herself on TV would send the wrong message for this already despicable piece of trash.
Thirdly, I applaud how many different ethnicities Pepsi incorporated, but they did it in the worst way possible. They had a person of Asian decent playing the cello, because Yo Yo Ma is Asian and therefore all Asian people are expert cellists. They had a group of black kids that randomly broke out into dance, because every single black person just does that right? They couldn’t just be some normal guys at the protest, they had to be break dancers. Of course, we can’t forget about our model, who is white. Showing that white is the standard for beauty. Now I know Kendall Jenner is not technically caucasian, but Pepsi sure was trying to make her look like it with the blonde wig and the whitewashed makeup.
And finally, the real issue. This commercial downplayed every walk for injustice in just two minutes, which is pretty hard to do. Considering the whole point of the ad was to show how even the smallest things, a can of Pepsi, can bring people together, they really strayed from the point when they decided to essentially spoof a BLM march. Had the girl in Baton Rouge not risked her life by walking up to the cops in the blockade, the premise for this commercial would not have existed. Isn’t that the reason she made a stand in the first place? All so Pepsi could sell their soda. Injustice? What? Racial prejudice? No! Pepsi? Yes.
My grievances can be expressed visually by this SNL sketch.