It turns out that Kendall Jenner did not end racism. Bless her heart, she tried.
She saw them all—the Asian man playing cello on the rooftop, the woman in the hijab snapping photos, the ethnically diverse brunchers sharing a laugh—taking to the streets, marching and having the times of their lives protesting…well, the cause is besides the point. Black Lives Matter, we think? Anyway, look how much fun!
She may be in the middle of a photo shoot, but the World’s Coolest March is beckoning. She leaves, struts to the front of the pack, and just when it looks like things may get testy as she comes upon a phalanx of stern-faced cops/killjoys, she has an idea. She hands one a can of Pepsi.
Police brutality? Antagonistic relationships with law enforcement? It was supposed to be over. The cop accepted the can. He tasted that sweet, sweet corn syrup, coating his throat in its all spicy-bubbled, viscous glory. He smiled. It was a truce! The crowd cheered! Resistance accomplished!
It was so instantly pilloried for its glaring tone-deafness that Pepsi pulled the ad immediately. Jenner apologized on her reality show and the world, it seemed, moved on to the next ridiculous celebrity controversy and brand whose time had come to be canceled.
But the ad reannounced itself to the zeitgeist this week like the deafening sound of a soda can lid popping open in a quiet library. It serves as both a reminder of how far off mainstream culture is from the reality of protests and the country’s systemic issues and, sure, as a bit of a comedic distraction.
People on social media wondered, in jest, where Jenner and her Pepsi can have been during the nationwide protests and violent face-offs with police. Shouldn’t the events of the last 10 days have been her red-white-and-blue swirled sphere bat signal?
This article was originally posted on yahoo.com/entertainment/.