Kaiser Chiefs lead singer Ricky Wilson has been mocked for encouraging fans to cheer for their vaccine brands, with people responding in rapturous cries and arm-waving described as creepy and cult-like.
Wilson, of the indie rock band Kaiser Chiefs formed in Leeds in the early 2000s, stood on the stage at the famous Isle of Wight festival on Sunday night, remarking how “clean” all his fans’ hands were.
“Let’s see your hands again,” the 43-year-old said in comments widely shared on social media and reported in news outlets including NME.
After his fans had obediently raised their hands in the air, Wilson continued: “They are clean hands! Washing them!”
“Let me hear if you’ve had the Pfizer vaccine!” Wilson shouted, to which the audience responded in screams and cheers, with the musician continuing, “Let me hear it for Moderna! AstraZeneca!” prompting a similar response.
— Martin Daubney ✌🏻 (@MartinDaubney) September 20, 2021
“Let’s hear it for the anti-vaxxers,” he continued, with the chorus of boos and whistles drowning out the few dozen who cheered.
“Hands in the air again! You’ve got clean hands, I can see. That’s good. We’re spraying you with gel at the end,” he said.
The footage went viral on social media, prompting users to brand them the “Pfizer Chiefs” on Twitter.
“This is definitely not a cult,” actor and conservative activist Laurence Fox mischievously remarked.
What in the cringe cult is this crap? Good lord rock and roll is dead. Kaiser Chiefs to change their name to Psfizer Chiefs I guess.♂️ barfpic.twitter.com/nk7uANiSop
— Five Times August (@FiveTimesAugust) September 20, 2021
“Screw you #PfizerChiefs,” said journalist Martin Daubney.
talkRADIO host Julia Hartley-Brewer called Wilson’s request to see everyone’s “clean” hands “very creepy”.
Scottish television host Gilliam McKeith said that the event promoted segregation and bullying, writing to Twitter: “Omg! This has to be the most depressing, manipulative scene I have ever witnessed from the music world @KaiserChiefs. How much was he paid to become a drug baron? Pushing segregation and encouraging bullying. #NoVaccinePassportsAnywhere #NoMedicalApartheid”
If you ever wondered how Germany found itself full of hate in 1930s…
'Let me see your clean hands' ~ Kaiser Chiefs. https://t.co/gRxf1161Fh
— Lange (@djlange) September 20, 2021
This is not the first time celebrities have found the public cringing in response to their vaccination-related hijinks. In July the Official London Theatre published a musical scene of well-known British actors such as Jim Broadbent and David Walliams performing “The Rhythm of Life” with stars singing, “Get that vaccine!” and “I’ve had mine!”
The Biden administration likewise used American stars such as Eva Longoria to push for vaccine uptake, while Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Jennifer Lopez, the Foo Fighters, Selena Gomez and others joined the “Vax Live” concert to press world leaders to “commit to vaccine equity”.
Can someone tell the Kaisersheeps about this? https://t.co/mo0Zv4dOef
— Matthew Marsden (@matthewdmarsden) September 20, 2021