Ashton Kutcher Popchips Video Pulled Due To Accusations Of Racism

An online video for Popchips featuring Ashton Kutcher sparked controversy and heavy criticism almost immediately after it was released yesterday.

Shortly following the release of the web ad Kutcher shared the link to the video on his Twitter account, and the backlash was almost immediate.

The video depicts a fictional online dating service, with Kutcher playing all four of the various men looking for love, all of which are over-the-top stereotypes, including a laid-back existential stoner, a picky fashionista, a tattoo covered southern man, and – the source of the sour taste in everyone’s mouth – an Indian Bollywood producer named Raj.

Viewers found Kutcher’s portrayal of Raj (complete with brown face makeup) offensive and racist, calling the ad distasteful. Still others have simply painted Kutcher as “an idiot” for not realizing that it would be offensive.

Popchips has removed the original video from their YouTube and Facebook pages, replacing it with a version that has edited out the Indian character, but you can still view the original posted by YouTube user “popchipsfans” who quickly put up a copy before the take-down.

Yahoo News reported that, “A spokeswoman for Popchips says the dating parody featuring the four characters was ‘created to provoke a few laughs and was never intended to stereotype or offend anyone.’ She added that the company hopes ‘people can enjoy this in the spirit it was intended.’”

Ashton Kutcher as Raj

Now, having watched the video and seen the online reactions I don’t personally find the character any more offensive than those portrayed by other comedians that take on exaggerated personas of different ethnicities such as Adam Sandler, Eddie Murphy, or Mike Myers, but I do see where people are coming from. The brown face makeup doesn’t help, but it doesn’t seem racist to use makeup to alter Kutcher’s appearance when considering he is meant to be portraying a character with a different skin tone than his.

I can’t say I don’t see what the fuss is about, I do, but considering the video was obviously an attempt (albeit a lame one) at comedy and not meant to be taken seriously at all, I do feel a lot of people need to just lighten up a bit and not take everything so personally.

What do you think? Weigh in down below in the comments to share your thoughts.

(Via UpRoxx)

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About Stella Inchaurregui Kennedy

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