"This is a global ad that reflects people from different walks of life coming together"

By Madeline Farber
April 5, 2017

Despite the backlash, Pepsi is defending its latest ad that features its newest spokesperson, Kendall Jenner.

“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,” Pepsi said in a statement.

The ad, which is titled “Live For Now Moments Anthem,” shows the 21-year-old supermodel leaving a photo shoot to join a protest. Toward the end, she hands a police officer a can of soda, and he takes a drink. Her fellow protestors then erupt in cheers.

Critics have faulted the ad for exploiting Black Lives Matter and anti-Donald Trump messages. Both Jenner and Pepsi drew backlash on social media, and some Twitter users have compared the ad — albeit unfavorably—to the viral “Taking a Stand in Baton Rouge” photo.

Here are some of the reactions:

“The creative showcases a moment of unity, and a point where multiple storylines converge in the final advert,” Pepsi said in an earlier statement to Teen Vogue. “It depicts various groups of people embracing a spontaneous moment, and showcasing Pepsi’s brand rallying cry to ‘Live For Now,’ in an exploration of what that truly means to live life unbounded, unfiltered and uninhibited.”

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