Trouble for Pepsi's Kendall Jenner Ad

PepsilogoBacklash is fierce after a Pepsi commercial featuring Kendall Jenner, Caitlyn Jenner's daughter. Critics say it's disrespectful of important issues today and mocks activism. The short version of the commercial, now unavailable, shows Jenner at a photo shoot, smiling at a man, throwing off her blond wig, wiping off her lipstick, grabbing a Pepsi, giving it to a police officer, and then joining the cheering crowds.

The description on the YouTube video reads, 

A short film about the moments when we decide to let go, choose to act, follow our passion and nothing holds us back. Capturing the spirit and actions of those people that jump in to every moment and featuring multiple lives, stories and emotional connections that show passion, joy, unbound and uninhibited moments. No matter the occasion, big or small, these are the moments that make us feel alive.

Pepsi ad tweetTweeters criticize the simplification of complex issues, with one tweeting, "Can't believe Kendall Jenner just solved institutionalized racism and oppression by giving a cop a Pepsi. Groundbreaking."

Pepsi is making no apologies: "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."

UPDATE: Pepsi decided to pull the ad and issued this statement: "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 removing the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologize for putting Kendall Jenner in this position."


  • What's your reaction to the ad? What was Pepsi trying to do, and where did the ad fall short?
  • Should Pepsi apologize? If so, what should the company say?
  • Did the company do the right thing in pulling the ad? Why or why not?