Last week, the Internet went wild for an ad created by Peloton, a subscription exercise equipment service that is targeted at beautiful rich people. Bikes cost over $2000, and staying connected to their video service is a subscription fee, too. One guy went viral for combing through their print ads and pointing out the ridiculous houses and views of people riding in rooms that are more luxurious than the most high-end gym.
I had my carpenter build a $9,000 finished wood riser for my Peloton bike in my glass-enclosed zen garden/home gym pic.twitter.com/VJSOjctYtO
— Clue Heywood (@ClueHeywood) January 28, 2019
But the real mockery was inspired by a commercial in which a woman is gifted a Peloton bike by her husband for Christmas, then proceeds to document her year of riding a stationary bike, which she then appears to show him the following Christmas…as a gift?
Some people said the ad was sexist, and that any woman gifted an exercise bike by her husband would throw the whole man out. Personally, I think the problem with the ad is how bizarre the behavior in it is. Who makes a vlog about a gift? Why are her eyebrows so terrified? What has changed her exactly? She looks exactly the same! Someone pay attention to that child by the tree!
But rich people ways are not my ways and it clearly made sense to the Peloton execs, who came out and defended the commercial after it went viral. They had reason to. Following this Internet dunking, Business Insider reports Peloton’s stock plunged 15 percent in three days. That means a $1.5 billion loss in the company’s market value. We are too powerful!
While Peloton was defending a clearly terrible ad, actor and gin seller Ryan Reynolds jumped on the perfect marketing opportunity.
The actor who played the husband has jumped on the media backlash and grabbed the Instagram handle @PelotonHusband. But what about the woman? Well, a new ad for Aviation Gin, Reynolds’ brand, has told more of her story:
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) December 7, 2019
The ad opens on the Peloton wife’s incredibly memorable face, gazing off into the distance. It pulls back to reveals she’s in a bar at Christmas, sitting with her two friends who are obviously trying to comfort her or find something to say. While the bike isn’t explicitly referenced in the ad itself, you get the feeling it’s been a tough week.
Then she says how smooth the Aviation Gin is before guzzling the entire cocktail. As the camera cuts away, you hear one of her friends say, “You look great by the way.”
Everyone agrees this is genius:
Quite possibly the greatest response to a messed up commercial EVER! And it only cost @onepeloton a billion dollars in value!
— John Brookhouse (@JohnBrookhouse) December 7, 2019
I will also accept “A yearsh ago I did-den-n’t realize how mush zhish gin would chay-change me! I am RELAXED! Yas, queen! I’m sho sleepy. No. Slo sheepy. Show sleepy. Wait. Hey. HEY. Mr. Bartender, if that’sh really my name. Your name can I have more drink in my…in my…drink?”
— Chrissie (@9chrissie) December 7, 2019
Pretty cool that there's a commercial about this lady and her two friends that helped her murder her husband and sink the body to the bottom of a lake, anchored by a $3,000 bike.
— Drew Kelly (@DrewKellyPSU) December 7, 2019
The brilliant bastard actually did it
— JR (@jjreffy) December 7, 2019
It was Ryan. 100%
— The Sad Seed (@TheSadSeed) December 7, 2019
And a lot of people were clearly relieved for both the fictional Peloton woman and the actual actress, who might have had a hard time booking jobs after the disaster of her very recognizable past campaign. Now people want more and more of her:
— Jesus Gutierrez (@jeezusgutierrez) December 7, 2019
— Triple♚Crown♔ByLine♚🥅🏒 (@TCByLine) December 7, 2019
— Silvia K. Spiva (@silviakspiva) December 7, 2019
Exactly! As a writer I keep noting how much story is given through so little dialogue. It’s a genius commercial. If you’ve seen the bike one, that’s just icing on the cake.
— sally kilpatrick (@SuperWriterMom) December 7, 2019
Great job, Ryan Reynolds. Most of us can’t afford a Peloton, but a bottle of gin sounds just right.