Musically Tyler, the Creator is often heralded for his off-beat brand of creativity, but with his most recent Mountain Dew ad, one social activist is charging that the Odd Future de facto leader has gone too far.
In “Mountain Dew Releases Arguably the Most Racist Commercial in History,” a post penned by Dr. Boyce Watkins which appeared on YourBlackWorld.net on Wednesday (May 1), the political analyst charges the PepsiCo-backed soft drink company with using harsh racial images “to appeal to the black male demographic.”
Mountain Dew responded swiftly, however, yanking the ads and expressing their regrets in a statement to MTV News.
“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 soda company said.
The spot, which was directed by Tyler under his Wolf Haley alias and debuted last month, exists as the third commercial in a three-part storyline. The first ad finds Felicia the Goat, an actual goat voiced by Tyler, in a restaurant that has run out of Mountain Dew. The goat then proceeds to assault the female waitress who delivered the bad news. In the second spot, Felicia, once again voiced by Tyler, flees from a police officer after being pulled over for “DewUI,” a play on words which also incorporates the company’s popular “Do the Dew” slogan.
For the third spot, Felicia the Goat (once again voiced by Tyler) appears in a police lineup in the middle of five black men, one of whom is played by Odd Future’s Left Brain. The goat intimidates the battered waitress, blurting out a number of phrases including “better not snitch on a player” and “snitches get stiches” before she shrieks and flees from the police station.
“Of course, in the world of Mountain Dew, every single suspect is black. Not just regular black people, but the kinds of ratchety negroes you might find in the middle of any hip-hop minstrel show,” Watkins wrote. “Mountain Dew has set a new low for corporate racism. Their decision to lean on well-known racial stereotypes is beyond disgusting. This doesn’t even include the fact that the company has put black men on par with animals.”
Watkins takes Tyler to task as well. “Even worse is that Mountain Dew probably thinks this ad is acceptable because they got the OK from a black man,” he wrote. “In their thorough corporate oversight, Mountain Dew may not have realized that Tyler, the Creator is also the man who made a song called ‘Tron Cat,’ with a verse stating that he would ‘r@pe a pregnant b*tch and tell my friends I had a threesome.’”
This latest outcry comes weeks after Reebok severed ties with Rick Ross for his combated lyric on Rocko’s “U.O.E.N.O.” and on the same day that Lil Wayne wrote a letter addressing his Emmett Till lyric controversy . Wayne also has an endorsement with Mountain Dew, which the Till family are campaigning against. The difference with this incident is that, with Wayne and Ross, it was their music and not as advertisement that came under fire.
MTV News reached out to an Odd Future rep who had no comment to offer at the time.