'Husband' in controversial Peloton ad speaks out

NEW YORK -- The actor who portrayed the husband in the now-infamous Peloton commercial is speaking out about the "dark path" that followed the social media firestorm.

The Internet has chewed apart the newly-released holiday ad for the at-home fitness bike, which shows a husband giving his wife a Peloton for Christmas.

The woman makes vlog-style videos of her exercises, and a year later, the couple sits on the couch to watch her compilation on a TV.

Some are calling this ad sexist, suggesting that the husband wants his wife to lose weight, and others are calling the people offended by the ad too sensitive.

For Sean Hunter, an actor and teacher from Vancouver, this reaction was stunning.

Hunter, who plays the unnamed husband, has only one line in the entire 30-second commercial: "OK, are you ready?"

Still, this small role has turned "into something pretty nasty" for him.

"Once something goes viral and it turns negative, people jump on that negative bandwagon and start to create any dialogue that they want," he said.

He even wrote a piece in Psychology Today, insisting that his - and the husband's - intentions were positive.

"The husband I was portraying wanted a healthy lifestyle ... My image is now being associated with sexism, with the patriarchy, with abuse, for example, with these words that I'm seeing people write about me ...That's not who I am," he wrote.

Hunter said the entire experience has left him with questions about the effects social media has on our society.

"Social media has, of course, played a part in my life," he said. "Everybody's life. I'm going to really sit with it and say, 'Huh. Where do I go from here?'"
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