Today's Evil Beet Gossip

Ashton Kutcher Filmed a Dating Ad and Everybody Said It Was Racist

So, the video is just stupid as hell, and only made me wonder if Bruce Willis punched Ashton in the face a few hundred times after Ashton broke their ex-wife’s heart, because my God, that nose.

Anyway, if you watched the above video, you probably noticed it was Ashton Kutcher in all of the “ads,” one of which featured Kutcher as “Raj,” a Bollywood producer. From, you know, India or somewhere thereabouts. And in that particular segment, Ashton wore what people are calling “brownface,” and people are angry over Raj. Anil Dash, blogger, Tweeted this:

Hey, startups that are helping @aplusk get richer, can you tell him that racist brownface ads aren’t cool? Thanks!

And in response, PopChips released an official statement, apologizing:

“The new popchips worldwide dating video and ad campaign featuring four characters was created to provoke a few laughs and was never intended to stereotype or offend anyone. At popchips we embrace all types of shapes, flavors and colors, and appreciate all snackers, no matter their race or ethnicity. We hope people can enjoy this in the spirit it was intended.”

Maybe I just don’t get things sometimes, I guess. Do you guys think the ad was racist? Offensive? Or are people becoming way more sensitive these days? See, I was most offended by the fact that Ashton Kutcher did a really cheesy dating ad. I mean, come on. Ashton Kutcher? On a dating site? Just one, exclusively? Please. He’s probably on all of them—like, don’t insult my intelligence.

13 CommentsLeave a comment

  • have you heard of “blackface”? how in the past white people would paint their faces black to play black characters in plays, etc? this is essentially “brownface” based on that original concept. and yes, it’s racist. you want an indian character for your ad, just get an indian actor to play him.

    • I get what you’re saying, and I’m on board, but getting an Indian actor to portray the Indian character would kind of defeat the whole Ashton theme. May as well get a real British guy to play the dirty hippie and Karl Lagerfeld to play the Karl Lagerfeld-looking dude, too.

      • The theme would be ruined, true, but then why choose an Indian character in the first place? If this was Ashton portraying a black person there definitely would be an outrage over this. More than what we’re seeing now with the brownface. There should not be a difference in which race/color is “okay” to portray and which isn’t. If it isn’t ok, then it isn’t and should apply across all lines.

        The issue comes with both popchips and Ashton. They shouldn’t have suggested this character in the first place, and Ashton should have been smart enough to say “hey, there might be a problem with this…”

      • Why choose an Indian character in the first place? I guess my first response would be “because the site is called World Wide Lovers,” and if it truly were international, as they advertise to be, and didn’t feature a non-Caucasian person, people would probably be all up in arms about that, too.

        But I get what you’re saying, either way.

  • Oh lanta. Should hippies get offended? karl Lagerfeld? People astonish me. This is just satire. All races make fun of other races, blondes get made fun of for being stupid even though there are tons of blondes that are incredibly intelligent. When you can learn to laugh at yourself and to laugh at other peoples interpretations of you you will find you are a much happier person.

    • i’m gonna take a wild leap here and guess that you’re not a person of color as this is the argument i always see when something like this surfaces-please do not equate being a hippie with being a person of color because the history behind that subculture and behind race is astonishingly different.
      that being said, i don’t find this horribly offensive, just in poor taste.
      based on the historical usage of “blackface” it becomes kind of obvious that painting your face the color of another race, in order to parody them is racist…now maybe they didn’t think so, and yes they are having “fun” but you just canNOT do that without there being any repercussions

  • I think very small dogs should be offended. That dog licked the chip, but then it didn’t get to eat it, Ashton/Karl did. Or maybe it’s a commentary on how dogs should not eat chips because it’s unattractive to have a “chubby” dog. Dog eating disorders. Yeah, that’s it!

  • Though this was surely meant in jest, and Ashton Kutcher has more range than the floppy haired doughy brained frat boy persona I had long assumed was the extent of his acting chops, it is just unfathomable to me that no one in his, or in pop chips camp, could see just how terrible an idea this obviously was. Even if you don’t share the perception that a white actor darkening his skin to represent a person of color, particularly in a negative light, is racist and hugely historically insensitive, how could you not realize how it would be perceived by so many of the viewers of the ad? It’s not about being a person of color or not, it’s about having any point of reference for the historical impact of black face. I’m not a person of color and I still find both this advertisement campaign and the comment about surly “Hindus” to be in extremely poor taste and indicative of a significant lack of knowledge or understanding.

    • pardon, you are quite right, what i meant is that often ill-informed non POC(or perhaps those not familiar with the history of racism in America) jump to the “well should ______ be offended too? y’all are offended by everything!” which is a really condescending way to counter racism like experiencing racism is just like a hippy being faced with yet another stereotypical representation of their subculture in the media
      &i agree someone should have red-flagged this at the conception of this stupid advertising idea

  • The whole ad is a piece of shit. How people are taking it seriously enough to be offended, I don’t know.

  • I see nothing racist in the video. people need to USE SOME HUMOR as it was meant to be just that. I’m from different culture, this video is funny and amusing and it is certainly not a racist. Some dumb critics with no life and nothing better to do decide to give their opinions and okay so what.??? The video is funny and people need to lighted up a bit and stop looking for misery and unhappiness.