Terry Crews has come under fire for ‘cosplaying as a poor person’ in his new Amazon ad encouraging people to work for the online retailer, as critics accuse him of being a ‘sellout’ and a ‘union buster.’
The cringeworthy commercial shows the 53-year-old actor dressed up in an Amazon uniform complete with an orange safety vest, mask, and gloves, while excitedly packing orders and palling around with employees at one of the company’s distribution centers.
‘I heard Amazon was hiring a bajillion people and thought I’d take a look for myself,’ he says in the ad, which was rolled out on TikTok.
Crews — who has an estimated net worth of $25 million — makes it seem like it’s a joy to work for the e-commerce giant, which continues to face backlash over its treatment of its employees and grueling working conditions.
Partnership: Terry Crews, 53, stars in a new Amazon ad that encourages people to apply for jobs at the company while touting its benefits, paid tuition, and flexible hours
Outrage: Crews, who has an estimated net worth of $25 million, was skewered for ‘cosplaying as a poor person’ while taking on the role of an Amazon worker
During what appears to be a leisurely lunch break, he asks a worker in a wheelchair if Amazon pays for college tuition. When she confirms the company does, he laughably replies: ‘So what do you think my major should be?’
According to the Amazon website, ‘eligible employees’ can have up to ‘100 percent of tuition and fees (up to a yearly maximum)’ paid for by the company to go ‘towards a certificate or diploma in qualified fields of study.’
In another awkward scene in the ad, Crews’ eyes light up when she sees someone driving a forklift in the warehouse.
‘Wait, I get to drive a forklift?’ he asks.
The commercial ends with the former NFL player touting Amazon’s ‘benefits,’ ‘paid tuition,’ and ‘flexible hours’ while urging people to apply for the many open positions around the country.
Crews, who shared the video on his own TikTok account, has received hundreds of negative comments in response to the campaign.
Yikes: The commercial shows the actor wearing an Amazon uniform while excitedly packing orders and palling around with employees at one of the company’s distribution centers
Having fun? Crews makes it seem like it’s a joy to work for Amazon, which continues to face backlash over its treatment of its employees and grueling work conditions
Cringe: During what appears to be a leisurely lunch break, he asks a worker in a wheelchair if Amazon pays for college tuition and then contemplates when he should major in
Conclusion: The ad ends with Crews touting Amazon’s ‘benefits,’ ‘paid tuition,’ and ‘flexible hours’ while urging people to apply for the many open positions around the country
Backlash: Crews, who shared the video on his own TikTok account, has received hundreds of negative comments in response to the campaign
‘Bro, I dare you to work there for a month. You would think twice about how they treat employees,’ one TikTok user wrote, while another added: ‘Terry no… don’t support union busters.’
Others referenced claims that employees don’t have time to take bathroom breaks, with one commenter asking: ‘Yeah but do the benefits include bathroom breaks or nah?’
The Amazon ad has also been skewered on Twitter, where many have pointed out that the company has chosen to hire Crews for a commercial instead of paying its employees more.
‘Amazon: We can’t afford to pay our workers more. Also Amazon: We’re going to pay Terry Crews a boatload of money to come roleplay as a poor person for a few hours,’ one critic tweeted.
‘This is Terry Crews cosplaying as a poor person to do an ad for union busting,’ someone else added.
‘Be interesting to learn how many hours every Amazon worker featured has to work to make what Terry Crews got paid for that spot,’ another pointed out.
Criticism: Crews has been branded a ‘sellout’ and ‘union buster’ for the cringeworthy ad
‘Propaganda’: The Amazon ad was also shared on Twitter, where critics eviscerated both him and the company
Many branded him a ‘sellout’ and a ‘union buster’ for his support of the company, which has headed off major labor unions since its founding in 1994.
The ad starring Crews was rolled out just a few weeks after it was revealed the company is hiring 150,000 workers for the holiday season.
Seasonal roles will include sign-on bonuses of up to $3,000 and, depending on shifts, an additional $3 per hour salary. The average starting salary was also increased to more than $18 an hour in September.
However, Amazon’s working conditions have long been the subject of scrutiny, including reports of unsafe working conditions, too few bathroom breaks, and unmanageable productivity requirements.
Some dubbed the new commercial ‘Amazon propaganda,’ including one Twitter user who claimed to have worked for the company.
‘I appreciate Terry Crews bringing some positivity and I can certainly appreciate that the dude is far more physically fit to do that job than I was, but as a former Amazon employee the whole paid tuition and flexible hours thing is 100% bulls**t,’ he wrote.