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Damage Control: Mary J. Blige Distances Herself From Burger King

MJB Damage Control: Mary J. Blige Distances Herself From Burger King

Earlier this week a Burger King commercial starring Mary J. Blige premiered featuring the R&B singer singing about the joys of “chicken”. In the commercial, Blige gives the ‘Popeye’s Lady’ a run for her money by giving the best stereotypical African-American impersonation ever seen on primetime television.

Following its premature release, the promotional spot went viral prompting backlash from MJB fans embarrassed for the vocalist for attaching her name to something so beneath her.

In an effort to distance herself from the fast-food chain, the 41 year old ‘Queen of Hip-Hop Soul’ has released an official statement. See what she has to say after the jump and sound-off below!

In a statement to TMZ: “I agreed to be a part of a fun and creative campaign that was supposed to feature a dream sequence,” the statement read. “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.”

Burger King to Mary J. Blige: “We would like to apologize to Mary J. and all of her fans for airing an ad that was not final,” BK offered in a statement.”

Simply put, the commercial [which has since been taken down from YouTube] should have never seen the light of day. Not only did it paint Mary in a horrible light, but African-Americans as well. While the jingle itself was catchy, it will be remembered and parodied for all the wrong reasons.

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43 Comments

  • April 4, 2012 at 7:46 pm
    Jaye says:
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    I guess the price she paid was too high lol. Mary i love you, but you agreed to this commercial, even if it was unfinished you sang about that chicken like massa cooked it for you himself. I am so embarassed for queen Mary right now.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 7:50 pm
    Girrrl says:
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    That commercial was hilarious for all the wrong reasons. worst commercial of 2012.

    CRISPY CHICKEN FRESH LETTUCE 3 CHEESES!!!

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 7:59 pm
    leon says:
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    It was hella embarrassing, but maybe she was misguided and wanted to do something light hearted not realising the stereotypical view others may have attached to it.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:12 pm
    leon says:
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  • April 4, 2012 at 8:13 pm
    Deveal2012 says:
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    You idiots sound hella stupid It was just a funny commercial not the end of the world.
    Its a major endorsement deal from a major company that any celebrity would love to have. For the blacks to act like they are embarrassed to eat chicken is shameful and based on all these reactions I hope you ppl never eat another piece again. For the blacks to act like something like this is the end all of african american culture proves how pathetic and disorganized the black race is and why it’s in the state it in. Because yall give stupid s*** life smh

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:17 pm
    lyric commander lee says:
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    ummmmm what wa soo racist about that? i just saw the clip – its weird to see mary doing it but still what was so racist about it

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:23 pm
    leon says:
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    I say its embarrassing, simply because its MARY J BLIGE, queen of hip hop soul, she’s a serious artist so to see her do something so beneath her its kinda crazy to see, but it was just fun…at least she got paid.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:30 pm
    KAT DELUNA FAN says:
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    SMH how did l missed this s*** :lol: :lol: :lol: hilarious !!!

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:38 pm
    Anne says:
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    Just goes to show how far some people will go, or maybe I should say how low some people will stoop, for money.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:49 pm
    number1k9 says:
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    I agree, would have been one thing so star in the commercial but it was like WTF, singing about ANYTHING like that, fast food, is embarassing. Especially when you’ve been in the game for 10+ years and counting!

    I still don’t understand how a dream sequence would have been much better, ummm someone dreamign about MJB singing to them whats in the new BK chicken wraps, LMFAO, you serious!

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 8:57 pm
    BEYRIHSTAN says:
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  • April 4, 2012 at 9:13 pm
    OZ says:
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    SHAME
    SHAME
    SHAME

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 9:18 pm
    Boopi says:
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    Crispy CHICKENNN!! Fresh lettuce (clap) Three CHESES!! Fresh dressen! (snap) Wrapped up in aaaa (werk) Tasteeeey…. Flowa! TORTILLA!!!! Yassss!!!! (JK)

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 9:21 pm
    Boopi says:
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3wXYiFirwlo

    If you wanna LAUGH…watch this!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 9:59 pm
    toohotfortv says:
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    I’m disappointed that people who are not (especially those not ofAfrican American decent) have choose to voice their opinions without even a morsel of knowledge in regards to why this type of portrayl is disparaging towards our community. There is an extensive history of stereotyping amidst media with reference to how all people of color are portrayed. In America, specifiically, the use of African Americans as spokes people for all manner of beverage and food harkens to the age where we were thought of as subservient; were our only purpose was to guide white America toward taste (in regards to entertainment and domestic issues). This concept can be seen in many places. Uncle Ben’s rice to aunt Jemima and Mrs Butterworth. These images are commonplace and disturbingly, for the most part, accepted (even by blacks). The backlash comes when “the machine” continues to perpetuate these stereotypes. Many see Mary J Blige as the personification of the African American woman. Her struggle is something we all can relate to. Her subsequent success is what we all aspire to have. And so, when we see something like this (those of us who know our history) it’s definitely a moment to recognize how far we have yet to go for true equality and the eradication of bigotry. Before anyone makes a comment on this commercial, it’d be advisable to do some research. A book called “Toms, coons, bucks, and Mamies” explores a lot of the concerns that many people in the African Americanncommunity

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 10:01 pm
    toohotfortv says:
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    I’m disappointed that people who are not (especially those not ofAfrican American decent) have choose to voice their opinions without even a morsel of knowledge in regards to why this type of portrayl is disparaging towards our community. There is an extensive history of stereotyping amidst media with reference to how all people of color are portrayed. In America, specifiically, the use of African Americans as spokes people for all manner of beverage and food harkens to the age where we were thought of as subservient; were our only purpose was to guide white America toward taste (in regards to entertainment and domestic issues). This concept can be seen in many places. Uncle Ben’s rice to aunt Jemima and Mrs Butterworth. These images are commonplace and disturbingly, for the most part, accepted (even by blacks). The backlash comes when “the machine” continues to perpetuate these stereotypes. Many see Mary J Blige as the personification of the African American woman. Her struggle is something we all can relate to. Her subsequent success is what we all aspire to have. And so, when we see something like this (those of us who know our history) it’s definitely a moment to recognize how far we have yet to go for true equality and the eradication of bigotry. Before anyone makes a comment on this commercial, it’d be advisable to do some research. A book called “Toms, coons, bucks, and Mamies” explores a lot of the concerns that many people in the African American community have expressed concerning this commercial and the message it sends.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 10:35 pm
    GetChoLife says:
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    Girl please like adding a dream sequence would have made the commercial any better. I don’t care if Michael Jackson resurrects from the grave to appear on this joke of a commercial, your’re still singing about a damn CHICKEN WRAP! Lil Mo could have taken the spot! A mess! 

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 10:46 pm
    Gr3g says:
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    That ish was f’n hilarious! “Flour tortilla…flour tortilllllaaaaas! LoL.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 10:51 pm
    Sha-nay-nay says:
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    BWAHAHAHAH!

    reminds me too much of this.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 11:03 pm
    Marcus says:
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    CRISPY CHICKEN! FRESH LETTUCE! 3 CHEESES! FRENCH DRESSING!
    WRAPPED UP IN A–TASTY–FLOUR–TORTILLA!!

    WORST, BAFOON, JOKE OF A COMMERCIAL EVER!!

    However, amazingly catchy nonetheless.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 11:07 pm
    MuzikPro says:
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    For some reason this reminds me of Spike Lee’s movie “Bamboozled”…and oh does the title fit for the game they ran on Mary. smh Once its viral you cant just take it down smh. Mary you should’ve known something was up with the lyrics they gave you to sing??!!!!! Turning your songs into that?! & On top of it your the “queen of hiphop soul” and they put the tag line “Come and Get It!” at the end of the video. Am I in the twilight zone or something…damn! ugh. Now you have put me in the position of smacking the first person i see singing that nonsense. thanks.

    Reply

  • April 4, 2012 at 11:40 pm
    ANTHONY says:
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    I WAS BLINDED BY HOW AMERICAS TAKING THE COMMERCIAL I DONT SEE WHAT WAS WRONG, I JUST FELT THE CONCEPT WAS WRONG BUT EVERYONE EAT CHICKEN WHITES, HISPANICS, ASIA ETC ASK YOURSELF HOW MANY MEALS U PREPARE OUT OF THE WEEK THAT INVOLVES CHICKEN? WHEN I SAW THE COMMERCIAL I WAS MORE UPSET ABOUT THE WAY SHE LOOK & GOOD POINT ABOUT THE POPEYES LADY….DIDNT NOBODY HAVE AN OUTRAGE ABOUT A BLACK LADY DOING A CHICKEN COMMERCIAL BUT ALL YA HATERS CAN TALK SHE STILL POCKETED 2 MILLION DOLLARS.

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 1:31 am
    STR8FACTS says:
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    African Americans are just way too sensitive. (This coming from an African American) Everything always has to be portrayed a certain way or they reject it. Lets be honest, BLACK PEOPLE LOVE CHICKEN! Everybody knows this, why is it such a big deal?

    First off, I don’t think Burger King purposely chose Mary because she’s black and we love chicken. Actually, when I first saw the commercial the first thing that popped into my head was (0_o really Mary? a Burger King commercial?) I was more concerned about how this would affect her brand. Others immediately felt (AWW s***! They done got our people singing about chicken) Like honestly it’s not that serious. How many times do black people stereotype ditzy white girls in movies and songs and I don’t see white america all up in arms over it. It comes to a point where all this s*** needs to stop. Black america uses racism as a scapegoat to bully the rest of America out of bitterness. We have come way to far to be bitter about things such as chicken, which is a universal!! People pleeasseeeeee relax. If anything, Mary should be ashamed to have dented her legacy in this way, Burger King is not to blame what so ever.

    Secondly, the commercial is extremely catchy, IDK why they pulled it so quickly. More people are laughing about it than they are mad about it. Every time I hear Mary I think about burger king and every time I see burger king I think about Mary, if you ask me it’s a win win for both parties because the commercial is so memorable!

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 1:41 am
    J. CHRIS says:
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    enough of that. check out this s*** guy

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 3:10 am
    YAAAS BOO! says:
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    “Why is that people always try to understand estimate my intelligents?!” – Mary J Blige

    Enough said.

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 3:13 am
    number1k9 says:
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    @STR8FACTS

    You’re takign the “any publicity is good publicity” approach. And YES in that case this commercial wether it was intended to be the final OR not… has served its purpose. Got people talking. And informed me that BK has chicken wraps, which I do now wanna go try (see if theyre better than McDonalds, LOL!)

    BUT regardless, I think of how you take the commerical, racially, comically, etc. It is tacky. Like even how MJB yelled out “What’s in the chicken wraps!” still has me cracking up!

    I still do not see how the dream sequence would work. Why does she need to be singin it too? David Beckham wasn’t playing soccer in his dream sequence BK ad…. Disconnect? yes!

    LOL @ the person who said shows how much people would do for money. Hell it sucks for her to have maybe ruined her brand or put a dent in it, but as a black man, who is obv not famous (yet! ah ha) I would have done the commercial or one similar and I bet most black people would have, and hell same goes for other races who may think something shouldn’t be touched by their race.

    BC hell ppl at the end of the day MJB is getting her money, and hell it ain’t like her albums are selling by the boat load anymore! She better keep that brand alive…somehow (LOL)!

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 3:33 am
    DUNK says:
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    The funniest commercial of 2012.I thought it was H I L A R I O U S!!!!!!!!!! Americans need to get over it, seriously the advert is jokes!!!!! pure rubbish but catchy as hell

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 3:34 am
    Mr.Geezy says:
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    That was a bad move on all accounts.

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  • April 5, 2012 at 4:52 am
    Shaquinisha-rose says:
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    Hmmm, why would they air an ‘unfinished commercial’ on their website?? This is what you call damage control…However, I do agree with some other comments about it not appearing racist. She is singing a song about crispy chicken in a tortilla. How is that racist?? It wasn’t racist it was just a shitting commercial, something one wouldn’t expect Mary J. would associate herself with…Its a fast food joint!

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 7:24 am
    YOOSONDALOOSE says:
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    You know what Mary, it was done, you shouldn’t have done it, lost so much respect, if you came out and was like ‘I thought it was funny, just a joke, a new thing in my career’ I would be like Hmmmmm alrught Mary thats alright, its a laugh, but nothing can justify that. Sorry.

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 7:44 am
    TAYLOR SWIFTS NUMBER 1 FAN!!! says:
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    The commercial is still on youtube..I just watched it. Instead of being offended by a silly commerical, why not start being offended by these types of commericials that are even being allowed to air, when they just promote the food that is a highly contribution to an already oversized problem with obesity.

    Oh and sorry, but if you take your children to fast food stores all the time.. You’re a bad parent!!

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 7:59 am
    Ass says:
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    I can’t stop laughing! Sing about that crispy chicken girl!!!

    And the c*** of the year award goes to….

    Um yeah!!

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 8:51 am
    toohotfortv says:
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    Either no one read my post, or people are simply choosing to stay ignorant. SMH…. Its a sad state of affairs.

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 8:55 am
    Jasmine says:
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    I agree 100 percent TOOOHOTFORTV.

    I cannot stand baffoon blacks like STR8FACTS and whites saying that African-Americans should not have an issue with a negative commercial like this. Statements like this from black people are the worst:

    “Lets be honest, BLACK PEOPLE LOVE CHICKEN! Everybody knows this, why is it such a big deal? ”

    I’m African-American and I do not love chicken. I grew up eating healthy cuisine and only eat at 5 star restaurants (not bragging that is just an honest depiction of my life and my family’s life). I have many black friends that are vegans and do not “love” chicken. I hate negative black stereotypes and dumb black people that support and go along with it because they are ignorant and do not know any better.

    What is next a watermellon drink commercial?

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 11:04 am
    STR8FACTS says:
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    Thank you SOO much for posting that comment and becoming the example of the bitter black world I was talking about. Are you kidding me? So because YOU and YOUR friends eat at five star restaurants and are vegans that’s everybody’s truth? You proved my point even more. African Americans like you would like to shun the truth, hide it under the Atlantic Ocean and bury it for something false that doesn’t represent our race but is appealing to YOUR eye. So yes, next time any one decides to do a commercial with a black person, lets make sure it’s a Hollywood affair with a $50 million dollar budget because at the end of the day, that’s what we WANT to see, we don’t want to see the truth. You know why this fried chicken stereotype is negative to you? Because people like you make it that way. At the end of the day Mary J. can sing about chicken wraps from here to the Grand Canyon and I could careless. Why? Because chicken does not define me. How many times do you see white people dressed as hillbillies with missing teeth and stink breath on television; but maybe white people should start bullying the rest of America because they are depicting what is real instead of what white America “Wants”. At the end of the day, not ALL white people are hillbillies and the WORLD knows this and not ALL black people eat chicken. So why do the white people ignore this stuff, but blacks get so hyper-sensitive? Like I said, it’s not that serious. White, Black, Spanish, or Asian, no one should be singing about snack wraps unless your a comedian because it’s not a good look. So please, continue to hold your bitterness and be mad at the world for minuscule things such as chicken and you will get VERY far in life as an African American. Trust Me :-)

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 11:05 am
    STR8FACTS says:
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    Last comment was to @Jasmine

    and @NUMBER1K9
    I’m not taking the any publicity is good publicity approach, I just think people are making the commercial into something totally different from what it was meant. You can’t watch that commercial and take it seriously is my whole point. I believe it was made for comical purposes. Who hasn’t chuckled after watching it regardless to what you’re chuckling for? The commercial is 100% tacky but like I said this is Mary’s own fault for taking part in something like this, Burger King didn’t force her.

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 1:24 pm
    number1k9 says:
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    @ STR8FACTS

    I agree, BK didn’t make her do that. But what makes me wonder is HOW THE HELL would her part they chose for this commercial fit well into a dream sequence, since she said it was supposed to be.

    I think regardless of how, on her part it was and will remian a tacky endorsement/ommercial/etc.

    Anywho, the publicity over this commercial really has made a lot more people think twice about BK, the commercial, etc. than it would have if people didn’t make a big stink over the commercial and regarded it as just another annoying commercial on TV, so BK did do some right, gotta s*** ton of free publicity!

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 1:47 pm
    MH says:
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    I quite honestly don’t see anything wrong with it, I actually thought it was funny. Everyone enjoys chicken, not just black people and one black person singing about chicken isn’t gonna make me or millions of other black people look bad. Lighten the f*** up…

    Reply

  • April 5, 2012 at 3:38 pm
    MISHKA says:
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    There’s nothing wrong with that commercial…sometimes you just have to stick to the decisions you’ve made, Queen Mary J.

    Reply

  • April 6, 2012 at 12:17 am
    Shaquinisha-rose says:
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    In the end Mary filmed her spot for the commercial and that’s what we saw.

    She stated that she ‘agreed to be part of a fun and creative campaign that featured a dream sequence’ as a way of distancing herself from the project, and appeasing to her disappointed fans. Yet she is still a black woman singing about chicken and doing exactly what @TOHOTFORTV is talking about, and by doing that she is at the centre of the part that some people find racist. Would her appearing in a ‘dream sequence’ have made any difference to whether or not the commercial is being viewed by some as racist? I don’t think so, it may have even made it worse.

    If she had found this commercial racist before singing on the dotted line, recording the jingle and filming her part I am sure she would not have done it. Would she have said anything had people not enjoyed the commercial? And would Burger King have pulled it? I guess we’ll never know. In the end some people are going to be offended and others aren’t, it just shows that in this day and age everyone responsible for producing anything viewed by the public really needs to understand their audience.

    Reply

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    [...] wraps.  Unwrapping what was then a very unexpected backlash, the singer immediately went into damage control – citing the burger monarch did not portray her in the light she [...]

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