Peloton holiday ad working up tempers, driving down stock and inspiring a savage spoof
Peloton workout bikes were designed to raise your blood pressure, but not likely in the way a new ad for them is doing. "The gift that gives back" spot paints the picture of a young mom, arguably already in perfect shape, who is gifted one of the pricey stationary bikes by her husband last Christmas.
Over the course of a year, she vlogs her progress and seems to work through the Five Stages of Grief, from denial, to anger, to ultimately acceptance. In the end, the ad posits, she's happy with the gift, and grateful to her hubby for having given it to her.
The ad immediately touched off a firestorm of controversy, with noted Twitter Peleton ad spoofer Clue Heywood declaring that the ad tracks, "a 116 lb woman's YEARLONG fitness journey to becoming a 112 lb woman."
The ad also spawned a vicious spoof from Twitter user Eva Victor, who takes the place of the woman -- and doesn't take the journey nearly as well. "I'm a little nervous, because my husband got me a workout bike as a gift, and that's rude," she begins. Later on, she screams as she pedals, "I hate my life!"
Eventually, this wife takes her fitness journey inspires a new awakening: she presents her husband with divorce papers.
Satire aside, the Peleton ad itself is making shareholders sweat. The trade AdAge noted that Peloton's stock dropped as much as 10% since the ad debuted and the backlash began -- the most intra-day stock movement in months.
While Peleton reps are mum, an advertising expert tells the magazine it's likely the ad will be pulled.