Kendall Jenner's now-cancelled ad campaign for Pepsi drew near unanimous outrage for its sanitized and white-washed depiction of protest movements. The spot is an unselfconscious reimagining of "Out Of Control," a 1999 music video for The Chemical Brothers directed by W.I.Z., which satirizes the vulturous aspects of advertising Pepsi would embrace years later.
The FADER reached out to W.I.Z. for his comment on the Pepsi spot, and the similarities with his music video. He provided the following statement:
The original inspiration for my Chemical Brothers film came from The Clash's ["White Man (In Hammersmith Palais)"] lyric: ‘Huh, you think it’s funny turning rebellion into money,' crystallizing a deep felt anger that when it comes to the profit margin, absolutely nothing is sacred, not even heartfelt expressions for social justice. We made this film in 1999, however today the inevitable has materialized: it’s become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
If you were ever in doubt about the carnivorous nature of advertising, then this Pepsi ‘spot’ says it all. It so insults everyone’s intelligence that it’s disturbing, what is this culture that we choose to live in that engenders such naked cynicism, is advertising the pornography of capitalism? Vanillarizing our expressions of outrage, cashing in on the very frustrations that this system creates. Right now big business is laughing, clutching our hard earned dollar and hard earned dignity all the way to the bank. Our love, our sweat, our beauty is being sold back to us, two for the price of one.
Yet can this travesty be a wake up call? To us all and to those in front of the camera as well as behind. No longer will we be prostitutes, no longer will we be muppets.
Power to the people.
Thumbnail photo courtesy of W.I.Z.