Still image from a video starring members of the hip hop collective Odd Future. Viewers have decried the video, which appears to be a commercial for the soft drink Mountain Dew, as racist and misogynistic.
Members of a Los Angeles-based hip hop collective star in what appears to be an advertisement for a major soft drink that is being denounced as racist and misogynistic.
The 59-second ad depicts a detective drinking a Mountain Dew, prodding a bruised and beaten white woman to pick out her attacker from a lineup of four black men – members of the group Odd Future – and a goat.
From the woman’s demeanor and the goat’s dialogue, it’s clear the animal is responsible for her wounds.
The ad first appeared on Odd Future's YouTube channel and has since been taken down. In a statement, Mountain Dew said it takes "full responsibility" for the video and has removed the spot from all its channels.
Odd Future musician Tyler the Creator said in a recent interview that he met with company representatives about his idea for a goat commercial and got it budgeted.
The woman in the latest video appears as a waitress giving the goat a Mountain Dew in an earlier video by the same group. Thirsty for more soda, the goat smacks the woman in the face with its hooves and chases her.
“Ya better not snitch on a playa,” the goat says in a scruffy voice from behind one-way glass.
Shaking and scared, the woman repeatedly tells the officer she cannot choose before hastily hobbling away on crutches.
“He’s the one wearing a do-rag,” the officer tells the woman. He then says, “Come on, it’s the one with the four legs.”
Author and social commentator Dr. Boyce Watkins called the video “arguably the most racist commercial in history,” saying the video compares black men to animals and plays on stereotypes.
Mountain Dew, which is owned by PepsiCo, released the following statement to NBC4 on Wednesday:
"We understand how this video could be perceived by some as offensive, and we apologize to those who were offended. We have removed the video from all Mountain Dew channels and have been informed that Tyler (the Creator) is removing it from his channels as well."
In a second statement, the company said:
"We apologize for this video and take full responsibility. We have removed it from all Mountain Dew channels and Tyler is removing it from his channels as well."
The ad was not intended to air on television, according to Jennifer Ryan, spokeswoman for PepsiCo.
Messages to Odd Future members seeking comment were not returned by the time of publication.
This is apparently the third of a series of videos featuring the goat -- named Felicia, and born from a lyric by Odd Future's Tyler the Creator -- as a Mountain Dew fanatic, and scofflaw.
In a separate video, the goat is pulled over by a police officer after speeding past his squad car. After acting suspicious and pleading with the officer not to look in the car’s trunk, the officer opens the trunk to find a trove of empty Mountain Dew bottles.
“Looks like we have a case of ‘Dew'-U-I,” the officer says as the goat runs away.
At the end of each video, a still image of the goat appears with a link to loitersquad.com – the website for a sketch comedy show on Adult Swim. Now in its second season, the show stars members of Odd Future.