By Jazz Monroe.
Yesterday, Pepsi released a new ad in which Kendall Jenner joins a mass protest and wins over a police officer with a can of Pepsi, apparently solving everyone’s problems. (Unsurprisingly, the ad has proven controversial—see some artist reactions below.) As well as nodding to last year’s iconic image of riot police confronting a Baton Rouge protestor, the ad will also be familiar to anyone who remembers the Chemical Brothers’ 1999 video for “Out of Control,” as journalist Dorian Lynskey points out. In the video, directed by W.I.Z. and starring Rosario Dawson, two survivors of an urban riot run through backstreets and finally face off against police—only to take theatrical gulps from bottles of a made-up cola drink. The camera pans out to reveal we’re watching a TV set; the revolution televised was in fact a soda commercial. In the video’s conclusion, the ad seems to have fueled further protests against the soda company itself. Watch both clips below. Pitchfork has emailed the Chemical Brothers’ representatives for comment.
Among those who’ve heavily criticized the ad is Questlove. Below, see his tweets, as well as reactions from Arcade Fire’s Will Butler, Mogwai’s Stuart Braithwaite, Anna Wise, and others.
Read “How Pepsi Used Pop Music to Build an Empire” on the Pitch.
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.
This story originally appeared on Pitchfork.
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