Mary J. Blige's Burger King Ad Pulled Off the Air Following Accusations of Racial Stereotyping
Published Apr 04, 2012Lending your face to a fast-food campaign is inherently a little embarrassing, but Mary J. Blige's new Burger King commercial has reached a new low. Not only did the soul singer show up in a new advertisement singing about Crispy Chicken Snack Wraps, but the campaign has come under criticism and now been pulled off the air.
The recently revealed ad, which shows Blige singing the ingredients to the chicken wraps, quickly stirred up a backlash, and the Associated Press points out that members of the black community have accused the clip of reinforcing racial stereotypes.
The black women's lifestyle website Madame Noire wrote an open letter to Blige, complaining about the "buffoonery" of the commercial and arguing, "You still have so much more to contribute to the arts and entertainment game that there was no reason for you to stoop to stereotypes. And I know what you're thinking, everybody across the world loves chicken. It's true, most people get down with the poultry; but as a black woman, singing passionately about chicken is not the move!"
Burger King was apparently not deaf to the criticisms, as it pulled the ad off the air on Tuesday (April 3) due to supposed music licensing issues -- not the backlash. The company reportedly hopes to get the commercial back on TV, but we'll have to see if it still features Blige singing about chicken.
You can watch the offending ad below.
UPDATE: Blige has now released the following statement: "I agreed to be a part of a fun and creative campaign that was supposed to feature a dream sequence. Unfortunately, that's not what was happening in that clip. I understand my fans being upset by what they saw. But, if you're a Mary fan, you have to know I would never allow an unfinished spot like the one you saw go out."