Netflix announced that the six-episode series on Gwyneth Paltrow’s luxury lifestyle brand Goop will be released this month. The announcement came with what some are calling a "terrifying" first trailer and poster.
"What we try to do at Goop is explore ideas that may seem out-there, or too scary,” Elise Loehnen, chief content officer of Goop, said in the trailer for "the goop lab," and based on the minute-long promo, the show will be in alignment with that mission.
The trailer teased exorcisms, psychedelics, psychic mediums and energy healing, with one woman claiming that she was able to complete years of therapy "in about five hours." The show also promises to focus on sexual health, as suggested by its promotional poster which shows Paltrow standing in the middle of what appears to be a vagina.
Goop has been criticized for its dubious wellness claims, including its advertisement that jade and quartz "eggs" can be used to maintain vaginal health. The company agreed to pay $145,000 in civil penalties in a California settlement in 2018 because these claims were deemed "unsubstantiated." Other products, including an "energy sticker" spray meant to “protect” individuals from psychological and emotional harm, have also been deemed misleading by experts and have given the company a bad rap.
"The most horrifying thing abt this is the word “lab” which implies some sort of science which goop has NOTHING to do with!!" writer Amanda Rosenberg tweeted. "Also the boldness of gwynnie coming to us from a vagina — a place she told us to stick jade eggs!!! this whole show is a danger to our health!!"
"Yay, I love encouraging and promoting pseudoscience in a time when parents are increasingly endangering their children by listening to influencers over doctors," another person tweeted.
Yet the criticism will likely not prevent people from tuning-in to the series, just as it has not prevented them from buying products from the company, which is considered the nexus of the multi-trillion dollar wellness industry.
Dr. Jennifer Gunter, an OB/GYN who has routinely criticized Goop's sexual health messaging, instructed people to educate themselves about sexual health by reading her book "The Vagina Bible: The Vulva and The Vagina" before they watch the series, which is slated for a Jan. 24 release date.
“I’d just write it off as crazy except some people are going to follow this advice and waste a lot of money,” Gunter wrote.