By Josh Duboff. Photos: Getty Images.
Even the least pop-culturally aware among us couldn’t help but take note last week of Kendall Jenner’s Pepsi ad, which showed Jenner taking part in a protest, handing a police officer a Pepsi as though the soft drink would single-handedly rectify all the inequalities our nation is grappling with.
Pepsi issued an apology—and apologized to Jenner—and pulled the ad, but Jenner herself has maintained a low profile since the hubbub. Various reports posted since the incident have claimed that the model is distraught by the controversy, and keeping close to her family. She made her return to social media Thursday, sharing her new Harper’s Bazaar cover, which she of course shot long before the Pepsi ad debuted.
It will be interesting to watch the 21-year-old this weekend, though, as TMZ is reporting that she will be making her “return to the spotlight” at Coachella. She will not just be swaying to Radiohead in a crop top and aviators, however (though she will probably be doing some of that, too). She is co-hosting a party thrown by the dating app Bumble, in Rancho Mirage. It’s “winter”-themed, which means there will be “real ice and snow . . . in the desert.” She’s slated to host the Saturday portion of the party, with sister Kylie (Ashley Graham is hosting the Sunday proceedings), and she is also scheduled to guest DJ at a separate event. According to TMZ, “organizers were extremely concerned [Jenner] would bail, but . . . she has now given assurance she will be at both events.”
It's possible that Jenner would have violated some kind of contract by pulling out of the Bumble event, which could have caused even more commotion. The weekend event could actually be a kind of nice, safe re-entry: there are worse ways for a celebrity to spend a Saturday than in a winter-themed party in a mansion in an “exclusive gated community.” Sure, there will be press there, as well as assorted attendees, who will be watching her every movement and facial expression, but ultimately she’ll probably be able to relax more than she would in other settings given the controlled nature of the event. And she’ll have her sister—always one to generate her own commotion wherever she goes—right there with her, pulling some of the focus.
At some point, Jenner will likely not be able to avoid addressing the situation, whether in a veiled manner in a magazine interview or in a more direct statement, but, for now, chances are she’ll just try to slide under the radar for a bit. In fact, the likeliest approach she’ll take, one utilized by many of her family members, is that she’ll wait to address the backlash on her own terms and in her own words, on the family’s Keeping Up with the Kardashians.
This story originally appeared on Vanity Fair.
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