WTF were they thinking?
You know when you see something for the first time and your first thought is, What the fuck did i just see there? That was the case when I first laid eyes on Moncler’s Friends with you Collection that was released recently. The collection, a collaboration between Moncler and the FriendswithYou Art Collective produced some colourful items featuring some of their favourite characters, such as Happy Virus, Cloudy, Look Who, Snowy & Mr. TTT. But it’s the items that feature Malfi the penguin that have created the most controversy. Have a look below and see what you think for yourself.
Yes, you did see right, Moncler have come up with a jacket that has pictures of golliwogs all over it!! Pretty Shocking right? Well lets not be too hasty here. In both Moncler and Samuel Borkson and Arturo Sandoval III of Friends With You’s defence, the range featuring Malfi isn’t supposed to offend. Far from it. You see Malfi is a penguin, and quite a friendly happy chap at that.
The question we have to ask is, How the Hell did this happen? How did it get past the numerous checks, approvals and modifications without someone going, er excuse me, but the faces on the jacket looks like a golliwog.
The golliwog is a black fictional character that first appeared in children’s books back in the 19th Century. In recent times it was associated here in the UK with Robertson’s Jam, who featured a golliwog on the jar called Golly up until 2002. A highly offensive character it was rightly banished to the history books, until now.
Today Moncler issued the following statement:
“We are sorry for any offence cause by the used of the stylized face of the penguin character ‘Malfi’ on some items of clothing. Malfi the penguin in one of a cast of characters created by artists’ duo FriendsWithYou whose message is first and foremost one of global friendship. We are deeply troubled if the face, seen out of its context, could be associated with past or present unacceptable, racially offensive caricatures. This could not have been further from our thinking and we unreservedly apologies for any distress this may have caused.”
The Malfi range has been removed from Moncler’s site, and if I was a betting man, I would bet they will be removed from all their stores as well, meaning, rightly or wrongly, the value of these will shoot up making them extremely valuable.