Peloton was just as surprised as we were by what happened in the first episode of the ‘Sex and the City’ reboot

Sarah Jessica Parker on Sex and the City revival "And Just Like That"
Sarah Jessica Parker in “And Just Like That…”

  • Peloton was not aware of how its bike would be used in the first episode of “And Just Like That…”
  • Peloton cited confidentiality as the reason HBO Max didn’t fill the company in on the storyline.
  • Peloton users and “SATC” fans said they were “speechless” that a beloved character died after a workout.

Warning: Spoilers ahead for episode 1 of HBO’s “And Just Like That…” 

Peloton was just as surprised as we were by what happened in the first episode of the “Sex and the City” reboot. 

“And Just Like That…”, the new series that picks up roughly 15 years after the last one ended, premiered on HBO Max on Wednesday night. In this latest iteration, Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) are living their lives in New York City, still married to the spouses they had when we last saw them — most importantly, Mr. Big (Chris Noth), a series fixture and Carrie’s on-again, off-again love interest-turned-husband. 

So it’s horrifying when, 39 minutes into the reboot of the beloved series, Big keels over from a heart attack after unclipping from his Peloton bike. 

“And just like that … Big died,” Carrie says solemnly. 

Peloton told BuzzFeed News that it worked with HBO Max to supply the bike and approve an appearance by one of its instructors, Jess King, who plays a fictional instructor named Allegra.

But it seems as though Peloton wasn’t aware of the full scope of the storyline ahead of time. 

“Due to confidentiality reasons, HBO Max did not disclose the broader context surrounding the scene in advance,” a Peloton spokesperson told Insider.

A spokesperson for HBO Max declined to comment. 

‘I was speechless’

The storyline is also striking a nerve two of the most diehard fanbases in popular culture: “Sex and the City” fans and Peloton users. Big dying is likely heartbreaking for fans who have watched (and re-watched) the series since 1998 and shocking to Peloton users who view their bikes as a heart-healthy way to stay in shape.

22-year-old Sydney Southern, who has owned one of Peloton’s $2,000 high-tech fitness bikes for nearly a year, told Insider she was surprised to see its bike used in this way.

“At first, it was fun seeing the bike that I love and resonate with be used by one of my favorite characters! Once he got off the bike and fell over dead, I was speechless,” she wrote in a message to Insider. 

“It makes me wonder what the goal of the placement marketing was? They killed off one of the most iconic characters in TV history with the Peloton, a well know health brand,” she added.

Still, she’s not too concerned about how this will impact the the brand image.  

“It’s definitely created buzz about Peloton. I don’t think it’ll do too much damage, it was just a shock to all loyal fans,” she said.

Chrissy Franchi, who describes herself as a “Peloton workout nut” and has done over 750 rides on her Peloton bike since she bought it January 2019, was equally shocked by this episode.

“A most beloved character of the most beloved series died of a heart attack after clipping out! I have no idea what made them agree to this,” she told Insider.

Franchi said that another user on a private Peloton Facebook group was considering not getting back on the bike because she was fearful after seeing this episode.

“All wrong!” she said. “Everyone knows exercise is great for the heart.”

Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a cardiologist and member of Peloton’s Health & Wellness Advisory Council, said in an emailed statement to Insider that Big riding his Peloton bike “may have even helped delay his cardiac event” and urged others to adopt a “healthy prevention strategy” to avoid cardiac conditions of their own.

“I’m sure SATC fans, like me, are saddened by the news that Mr. Big dies of a heart attack,” she said. “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. These lifestyle choices and perhaps even his family history, which often is a significant factor, were the likely cause of his death.”

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