Peloton had no involvement with or even warning about the Sex And The City revival’s stunning twist.
And Just Like That killed off a longtime character while he was using his Peloton to exercise.
Peloton responded with a hasty but clever advertisement, only to be blindsided yet again.
With Chris Noth accused of sexual assault, Peloton is tossing away the ad until they know more.
At the time … by which we mean just days ago … Peloton’s advertising decision was a marketing masterstroke.
No brand wants their product featured in a memorable or tragic death on television, as This Is Us demonstrated just a couple of years ago.
Peloton’s retaliation was clever and classy, featuring Chris Noth’s character alive and well. Genuinely, it was brilliant.
This was a smart move to pivot the conversation away from the idea of someone dying on a Peloton.
Instead, the focus was on getting a good chuckle out of this "retaliation" alongside people being impressed that this was thrown together so quickly.
Haste did not make waste in this case, but hindsight can make fools of us all.
"Every single sexual assault accusation must be taken seriously," Peloton has said in a statement.
"We were unaware of these allegations when we featured Chris Noth in our response to HBO’s reboot," the brand affirmed.
"As we seek to learn more," Peloton announced, "we have stopped promoting this video and archived related social posts."
Chris Noth is an actor with decades of projects under his belt beyond Sex And The City.
He played a detective on classic Law & Order for years until a shouting match with Dick Wolf got him fired and his character transferred to Staten Island.
In addition to returning for Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Noth was also particularly memorable for his role as Alicia Florrick’s husband on The Good Wife.
His character’s fictional death and the Peloton ad made this the first time that Noth has been making headlines in years.
Seeing his name in the headlines was clearly emotionally evocative, and not for his on-screen roles.
Two women came forwrard to tell The Hollywood Reporter about their experiences with the actor, accusing him of sexual assault.
One woman, who is 40, accused Noth of raping her in Los Angeles in 2004.
She was 22 years old at the time. Noth would have been in his early 50s.
A 31-year-old accused him of sexually assaulting her in New York in 2015, when she was 25 and Noth was 60.
Noth has responded, saying: "The accusations against me made by individuals I met years, even decades, ago are categorically false."
"These stories could’ve been from 30 years ago or 30 days ago," he continued.
Noth affirmed: "No always means no — that is a line I did not cross."
"The encounters were consensual," Noth alleged.
"It’s difficult not to question the timing of these stories coming out," he added.
Noth concluded: "I don’t know for certain why they are surfacing now, but I do know this: I did not assault these women."
Many sexual assault accusations are extremely straightforward, with predators using money, power, violence, or the threat of those things to get their way.
These accusers describe something more complicated — dates, breakdowns of communication.
It is possible that all parties are sharing their honest recollections. Regardless, Peloton is making the right decision by putting a pause on the ad until they know more.