During the 2020 lockdown due to COVID19, I was staying with my mother in the Chicago suburbs. I missed travel, and I missed New York City. I ended up binge-watching Sex & The City. There really is no city like NYC.
When it was announced that there would be a continuation of the characters in And Just Like That, I was hesitant but looking forward to spending time with the glamorous part of NYC. It had been a little over a year since I had watched the entire series, but still, it was pretty fresh.
I watched the first and second episodes of the limited series that premiered on HBO Max, so here are some of my thoughts (spoilers ahead):
>In case you weren’t aware, there was already a script ready for a third Sex & The City film, but due to Kim Cattrell not wanting to do it and other events, they scraped it. Instead, it was revealed that the film would center around Big’s death and Carrie’s mourning. They kept that premise for this limited series. The second episode, Little Black Dress, was a sweet, sad, and funny title for an episode all about preparing for Big’s funeral.
>They jumped the gun by having NYC act as if the pandemic is all over. The show was filmed in early 2021. They show Miranda taking a class at Colombia University, taking the subway, the people walking the streets and going to museums, etc., all without wearing a mask or social distance. NYC was the epicenter and, since then, has taken the virus and safety protocols seriously. We are about to welcome 2022, and NYC, in particular, requires masks in many areas, including campuses, museums, and subways. Unless And Just Like That is taking place five years from now, this was way too early and unrealistic for how life is even for the rich and glamorous New Yorkers.
>They address Samantha’s absence by sharing she moved to the UK for work. Private discussions between the girls reveal Samantha took it perhaps too personally when Carrie dropped her as a publicist and decided to end her ties with the whole group. By episode two, Samantha sends Carrie flowers for Big’s funeral, but that is all.
While the real-life conflict between Samantha actress Kim Cattrell and the rest of the cast and show has been riddled with strife, I do wish they kept it more civil on the show. Perhaps have Samantha send texts or hear Carrie on the phone with Samantha sending her condolences. Alas, they went the truer to life route.
>Having just watched the original series, I noted they brought back Susan Sharon and Bitsy Von Muffling-Fine. Two random characters you meet once (twice for Bitsy), but I liked the throwback. What I did not like is that Bitsy’s husband, played by Nathan Lane, is revealed to have died of COVID. Was Lane in a fight with them? Because that would have been fun to have him back on!
>Another fun salute to the old show is when we see Charlotte’s new dog named Richard Burton. As we know, she loved Elizabeth Taylor, and Richard was her ex-husband (twice over), so to continue Charlotte’s undying love for Ms. Taylor was sweet to see.
>As usual, when any show from the 90s tries to address the recent climate of wokeness and political correctness, they try a bit too hard, but it sort of works by the second episode. Miranda has quit corporate law to be more of a solution and change to the injustices she witnesses, especially towards racism. Of course, she is constantly almost being canceled, commenting on her black professor’s hair, unintentionally acting as a white savior, etc. There is a good scene where her professor says apologizing for trying is not necessary, and these are promising first steps. It brings hope for the future in real life as well as for the show as they continue Miranda’s journey.
>Speaking of Miranda, her son has become a horny brat. Brady is a 17-year-old with a practically live-in girlfriend. They make out during a child’s piano recital and refuse to be “sex-shamed.” Finally, during Big’s funeral, Miranda disciplines her son for acting like a spoiled, stubborn ass. For a lot of youth who want to be able to express themselves, what is not being taken into account is that there are times and places to do so and to not be the center of attention. Miranda and Brady learned that, and I was happy to witness that take place.
Other gems: Carrie has a smartphone, but it still has buttons. As we know from the first film, she is not a fan of the touch screen. On the other hand, there is a pretty funny photo of a young, long-haired Chris Noth, and instead of random men, all the sex talk is either about their husbands or their sons, which shows that some things don’t change but shift in focus.
All in all, I am looking forward to the limited series. It was a bit awkward in the beginning, trying to address the new societal age as well as their actual aging. However, by the second episode, it had a promising groove. If you are a fan of Sex and the City, you will ultimately enjoy And Just Like That.