Peloton released a video advertisement on Twitter Sunday that appeared to be a response to a plot line in the new “Sex and the City” reboot “And Just Like That…”. Spoiler alert: in the reboot, which premiered on HBO Max last Thursday, beloved character “Mr. Big” was killed off the show due to a heart attack after a strenuous Peloton ride.
According to Buzzfeed News, Peloton did not provide the bike used in the episode. However, they did know a bike would be used, and they even allowed real life Peloton instructor Jess King to play a fictional instructor in the “Sex and the City” reboot.
“Due to confidentiality reasons, HBO did not disclose the larger context surrounding the scene to Peloton in advance,” Peloton spokesperson Denise Kelly told Buzzfeed News.
Even more surprising for Peloton than how the “Sex and the City” reboot used the bike was how the episode affected the company’s stock prices. They fell 16% in just a couple of days. There are a lot of legal questions about whether peloton could sue over the episode since it had such significant consequences for the company. As of Monday morning, there did not appear to be any sign Peloton planned to go the legal route.
Instead, it appears Peloton is responding by highlighting the health benefits of the company’s signature product. In Sunday’s advertisement, Peloton reunited Chris Noth, who played Mr. Big in Sex and the City, and King. Noth said, “I feel great” and suggested the two take another ride on their Pelotons.
“And just like that, the world was reminded that regular cycling stimulates and improves your heart, lungs and circulation, reducing your risk of cardiovascular diseases,” the ad’s narration, provided by Ryan Reynolds, said. “Cycling strengthens your heart muscles, lowers resting heart pulse and reduces blood fat levels. He’s alive.”
In a statement provided to Buzzfeed News, a cardiologist and member of Peloton’s health and wellness advisory council defended the bike, attributing Mr. Big’s death to his lifestyle.
“I’m sure SATC fans, like me, are saddened by the news that Mr. Big dies of a heart attack. Mr. Big lived what many would call an extravagant lifestyle — including cocktails, cigars, and big steaks — and was at serious risk as he had a previous cardiac event in Season 6,” Suzanne Steinbaum said in the statement. “These lifestyle choices and perhaps even his family history, which often is a significant factor, were the likely cause of his death. Riding his Peloton Bike may have even helped delay his cardiac event.”
Peloton stock rose as much as 6% Monday morning.