Any publicity may not, in fact, be good publicity.
Stationary bike manufacturer Peloton found that out the hard way on Dec. 9 when its signature bike was featured rather tragically in the premiere of HBO’s Sex and the City revival. Mr. Big, it seems, pedaled his heart out — and now Peloton finds itself, well, backpedaling.
That’s right, the character played by actor Chris Noth (and major spoiler alert here) dies in the first episode of And Just Like That… That he dies of a heart attack after a particularly vigorous Peloton class is perhaps an unpleasant discovery for the public relations team at Peloton — and the company quickly took pains to insist that it wasn’t the bike’s fault.
“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,” Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a cardiologist and member of Peloton’s health and wellness advisory council, said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times. “These lifestyle choices and perhaps even his family history, which often is a significant factor, were the likely cause of his death.”
That’s right, Peloton felt compelled to trot out an actual doctor to comment on a television character’s fictional death. What’s more, that doctor wants the world to know that it should be thanking the bike.
“Riding his Peloton Bike may have even helped delay his cardiac event,” Dr. Steinbaum observed.
Which, sure, maybe. But fans weren’t buying it.
Peloton promises its bikes will give riders an “immersive cardio experience,” but we can’t imagine Mr. Big’s heart attack was what it had in mind.