Over the past few years, a slew of celebrities has played Colonel Sanders in Kentucky Fried Chicken commercials — but Reba McEntire is the first woman to get the gig. The fast food chain recently unveiled a new marketing campaign starring the country singer, which prompted a predictable chorus of grumbling on social media.
KFC recently tweeted its latest commercial, which features McEntire dressed up in the Colonel’s signature white suit and mustache, singing lines like, “Please ignore any likeness to famous country singers, I’m definitely not a woman.” The chain captioned its tweet, “Nothing to see here, folks. Nope, nothin’ at all. Just the same old Colonel with a new flavor of fried chicken.” (That flavor, in case you were wondering, is Smoky Mountain BBQ.)
McEntire’s assumption of the Colonel’s character proved offensive to some social media users, who criticized KFC for its latest celebrity representative.
Dear colonel sanders.. I am truly sorry for what we have become
— Ruben Cazessus (@BEBESQUARES) January 26, 2018
The REAL Colonel Sanders is turning over in his grave right now. What a ridiculous joke this is.
— GoPackGo (@NoahMOJ) January 26, 2018
McEntire, at least, is excited about her latest role. “I grew up with Kentucky Fried Chicken. It’s part of my story, and I’m so excited to now be part of theirs,” she said in a statement. “I’ve held a lot of roles in my life – sort of like the Colonel himself – but this is certainly the most unique one yet.”
Watch McEntire portray Colonel Sanders in the new KFC commercial below.
Read the full story at Salon.