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Someone at Mountain Dew thought it would be a hip idea to let African-American rapper Tyler-The Creator direct an online ad for them. Mountain Dew, a product of PepsiCo, targets younger men with its neon colour and high caffeine content and sometimes attempts to have edgier ads.
But there is a fine line between trying to be hip and being offensive. The rapper who uses shock and offense as the tools of his trade developed a series of three ads that revolve around a nefarious goat named Felicia who talks in Tyler’s voice and wreaks havoc on anyone around. The third part depicted a battered white woman on crutches being urged to identify a suspect out of a lineup of black men. The goat character, included in the lineup, makes threatening comments to the woman, who eventually screams “I can’t do this, no no no!” and runs away. The word “do” is in apparent reference to the soft drink’s “Dew It” slogan. The minute-long spot was soon criticised for being racist and misogynistic. “We apologise for this video and take full responsibility,” PepsiCo said in a statement and removed the video from its website.
Mountain Dew was criticised before because of its endorsement deal with Lil Wayne, whose rap lyrics compared a rough sex act to the murder of a black teen in 1955 for allegedly whistling at a white woman.
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