Peloton, the fancy indoor-cycling company for the one percent, lost roughly $1.5 billion in market value after social media got hold of (and mercilessly mocked) its new holiday commercial, which depicts an anxious woman anxiously documenting her bike journey for a year after being gifted a Peloton from her non-anxious husband. (Her eyebrows have seen … things.) Peloton Wife, as she’s now lovingly called, has avoided commenting on the divisive commercial and bounced back by starring in a cheeky ad for Ryan Reynolds’s gin company, but the Peloton Husband? Who we see for approximately four seconds? Who we’re having difficulty remembering the face of, despite his photo being right above this paragraph? He’s not exactly loving the attention. In a new interview with Good Morning America, actor and teacher Sean Hunter said that his image is now being “associated with sexism, with the patriarchy, with abuse,” even thought that’s “not” who he is.
“People turned down a pretty dark path and it turned into a nasty thing,” he explained. “Once something goes viral, and it turns viral, people jump on that negative bandwagon and start to create any dialogue they want.” (Despite this backlash, though, Hunter changed his Instagram handle to @pelotonhusband.) In a separate interview with Psychology Today, Hunter also admitted he was concerned that his association with the commercial might tarnish his chances of getting more acting work. “As my face continues to be screenshot online, I wonder what repercussions will come back to me. I pride myself on being a great teacher and developing actor, and I can only hope that this affects neither,” he said. “I currently sit here hoping that I’ll be able to continue auditioning for commercials without any taint, and that if my students happen to find the commercial and recognize me, they won’t think about me any different than they already know me.”
As for Peloton Wife, some digging into the Google abyss finally turned up her identity: Her name is Monica Ruiz, and she has appeared on a few television shows throughout her professional career. Act fast, SoulCycle!