Peloton revives ‘Mr Big’ and shares after ‘Sex and the City’ twist
Fitness firm Peloton has gone on the counterattack after a plot twist in “Sex and the City” helped send its shares into a skid, bringing a key character on the show back to life in a parody ad, as it seeks to revive its own fortunes on Wall Street.
In the first episode of the latest reboot of the popular series called “And Just Like That...,” the character John Preston, known as “Mr. Big,” dies of a heart attack shortly after a workout on a Peloton exercise bike.
Shares of Peloton suffered following the surprisingly dark turn in the comic series, falling 5.4 percent in Friday’s session after the episode was broadcast on Dec. 9.
Peloton initially retorted with comments from a cardiologist who pointed to “Mr. Big’s” hard-living lifestyle as a factor behind the unfortunate turn of events.
The doctor also cited the character’s possible genetic predisposition to heart disease, while touting the merits of the exercise bike.
But on Dec. 12, the exercise company came back with a more elaborate response, unveiling a new ad spot with actor Chris Noth, who filled the role of “Mr. Big,” longtime boyfriend of protagonist Carrie Bradshaw, played by Sarah Jessica Parker.
The ad features Noth sitting with Peloton trainer Jess King, who also played the instructor on the series during the ill-fated fictional workout.
In the spot, Noth asks his companion if they should take another ride, saying “life’s too short not to.”
The couple giggles as a voiceover reads Peloton’s message: “And just like that, the world was reminded that regular cycling stimulates and improves your heart, lungs and circulation, reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Cycling strengthens your heart, muscles, lowers resting pulse and reduces blood fat levels.
“He’s alive,” the ad concludes.
Peloton shares have been under pressure since early November when the company cut its forecast as more consumers return to gyms amid the reopening economy.
Credit Suisse downgraded the firm on Dec. 9, saying the market shifts have forced Peloton to increase advertising and discounting.
“These actions change the economic model,” Credit Suisse said, but added that it is “long-term positive on connected fitness.”
Shares closed up 7.4 percent at $41.34 following a volatile session.