Why Peloton’s new holiday ad has incensed the internet


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By Scottie Andrew | CNN

Peloton, the indoor bike start-up, released a new holiday ad that in another time may not have made a dent in the cultural conversation.

But this is 2019, and once the internet found the ad and pulled at its seams, there was no turning back.

Social media is awash in critics who have seen the ad and are confounded by its aims, accusing Peloton of peddling negative body image, unchecked privilege, and gross marital dynamics.

The only way to enjoy that Peloton ad is to think of it as the first minute of an episode of Black Mirror

— Jess Dweck (@TheDweck) December 2, 2019

That face you make when you have to videotape yourself exercising to prove to your husband that you’re making every effort to (checks notes) look thin for him. #peloton pic.twitter.com/Hq6stoiETH

— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) December 3, 2019

This much is clear: We’re living in a post-Peloton holiday ad world now.

There’s a tangled web of accused offenses to run through, but first, let’s break down the 30-second spot.

The ad

We open on a young mother descending the stairs of her home, led by her daughter. It is a snowy holiday morning (you can see the snow through the home’s luxurious floor-to-ceiling windows!).

A faceless husband is waiting for her with a surprise gift!

“A PELOTON?!?” she shrieks — but in delight, or fear?

The unnamed woman begins to document her fitness journey in a vlog, and audiences briefly wonder if this woman is a professional YouTuber.

She rides after work. She rides, begrudgingly, at 6 in the morning.

She rides straight out of winter and into the spring — one can tell time has passed because the windows now reveal a lush and green backyard.

She records it all, though her large, doe-like eyes seem to plead those of us watching at home for help.

Who is making her vlog after all?

Now it’s fall, and our unnamed protagonist has cycled her way through three seasons in 20 seconds! From the screen in front of her, a Peloton instructor finally acknowledges her efforts — “Let’s go, Grace from Boston!”

Grace, still home in Boston, is thrilled. Viewers are thrilled to learn this woman has a name.

“She’s So High,” a Tal Bachman song that debuted 20 years ago, swells as Grace unveils her yearlong vlog to her husband — it was he she was speaking to all along!

“A year ago, I didn’t realize how much this would change me,” she says, now a full believer.

Audiences cannot immediately notice how Grace from Boston, as fit now as she was at the ad’s start, has changed, other than she is now named and perhaps has joined a fitness cult.

She thanks her husband for the gift, though it seems as though she did not initially ask for the exercise machine in the first place.

Why people hate it

So what, then, is the most offensive part of this ad?

Critics suggested it smacked of sexism. In …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment

      

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