Avril Lavigne's new music video "Hello Kitty" was yanked out of YouTube not long after its premiere on Tuesday, April 22. It has sparked controversy for its Asian images that are deemed racist but a representative of the singer said the reason of the video's removal was not it.
The video shows Lavigne visiting a candy store and having sushi for dinner. She's later seen hitting the streets of Japan with her dancers and interacting with some locals as she keeps singing about the fictional character from Sanrio. "Not sure if this Avril Lavigne video is terrible, racist or terribly racist," podcast host @desusnice tweeted Tuesday, April 22.
Meanwhile, Billboard magazine's Jason Lipshutz commented, "[This] video is an embarrassment in any language." Entertainment Weekly wrote, "There are serious questions about whether it's offensive (expressionless Asian dancers, Tokyo-as-prop) or offensively obvious (this one's for you, large Japanese fanbase!)."
Her representative told MTV News the removal from YouTube was because it was posted a day early. The video was slated to go live on Wednesday afternoon. A rep for YouTube also confirmed that they did not take it down, and that the video is not currently available for public viewing on the site.