Avril Lavigne’s new Japanese-themed music video for her song Hello Kitty disappeared from YouTube, hours after the pop star came under fire amid allegations the promo features racist stereotypes.
The singer released the video, in which she dances on a rooftop, in a candy store and in a sushi bar as four expressionless Asian girls pose as her backing dancers, online on Tuesday.
But the playful promo, which exaggerates Japan’s kawaii (cute) culture, didn’t sit well with some fans.
It sparked a backlash and many devotees took to Twitter to express their outrage, turning the hashtag #AvrilLavigneHelloKitty into a trending topic.
One user wrote: “Not sure if this Avril Lavigne video is terrible, racist, or terribly racist”.
Another tweeted: “Oh Avril, this is literally the worst music I have ever heard. And then you had to go and make it kinda racist. Why.”
But some were fans of the music clip.
Avril is chucking colourful cupcakes, candy & fun at you in new #HelloKittyMusicVideo! KAWAII! 苏州美甲网,南宁夜生活,/ovbj4jf9xG pic.twitter广西桑拿,/oPsZ2hrEWf
— Avril-L南宁夜生活,, Melissa (@AvrilLorg) April 22, 2014
Message to the haters of the #HelloKittyMusicVideo pic.twitter广西桑拿,/vLKIfWYCVk
— Heartache. (@ALittleBlackS) April 23, 2014
Lavigne is yet to comment on the controversy, but the promo has since been removed from YouTube.
A representative for the video-sharing website has revealed that YouTube bosses did not take down Hello Kitty, but confirmed to MTV News the promo is not currently available for public viewing.
The video is still available on Lavigne’s website.
Here it is!! #HelloKittyMusicVideo 苏州美甲网,南宁夜生活,/ChencDNQ2u
— Avril Lavigne (@AvrilLavigne) April 22, 2014
Do you think the clip is racist?