Another TV character suffers a heart attack while riding a Peloton

(CNN) — It’s been a rough few weeks for exercise machine company Peloton, and now another TV show character has had a heart attack on the company’s interactive bike: this time (spoiler alert) it was Mike Wagner (played by David Costabile) in the season six premiere of Showtime’s “Billions.”

Last month, shares of Peloton fell 11% on the heels of “Sex and the City” fictional character Mr. Big, died in the series after riding a Peloton in the HBO Max reboot of the show. (HBO Max, like CNN, is part of the WarnerMedia division of AT&T).

Peloton said in a statement that while they understand why their products sometimes appear on television shows, they disagreed that their brand name be used on “Billions.”

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“As mentioned in the program itself, cardiovascular exercise has great benefits in helping people lead long and happy lives,” a Peloton spokesperson said.

But unlike Mr. Big, Wags survives, and the series even makes a nod to the “Sex and the City” plot, which was added in post-production, according to the New York Times.

“I’m not going to die like Mr. Big,” Wags says in the season premiere of “Billions.”

Peloton’s stock price has plunged more than 75% in 2021, and the company hasn’t done much better so far this year. Shares are down nearly 25% and are trading at their lowest level in nearly two years.

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CNBC reported Thursday that Peloton was considering pausing production of its low-end bike for two months, but CEO John Foley categorized “the rumors that we are stopping all production of bikes and Treads” as “false.”

Peloton became a staple for many during the restrictions and isolation imposed during the covid-19 pandemic. But now consumers are returning to gyms, and the company has faced some public relations headaches, from fictional TV personality crises to product recalls. There is also more competition from startups selling cheaper bikes.

Following Mr. Big’s death on the show, Peloton released an ironic announcement as a reply. The company soon remove the ad in the wake of allegations against Mr. Big actor Chris Noth, who appeared in the ad.

Peloton shares were trading at $27.06 at Friday’s close.

With information from Paul R. La Monica.

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