And Just Like That: Carrie Bradshaw is Sex and the City’s most down-to-earth and messy character – is that why so many people hate her?

Sex and the city it’s great because Carrie Bradshaw isn’t. A storyline in the show’s fourth season has come to a head. Sarah Jessica ParkerThe town woman has a relationship with Aidan (John Corbett), a carpenter so pure and skilled that he could just walk out of a fairy tale. They had moved in together, but Carrie needed her space, too. “I remember walking into my apartment with no one there and it was all quiet and I can do the things you do when you’re completely alone,” she grumbled to her friends. She then tells Aidan that she needs an hour to herself when she comes home from a long day. He obliged, she divided the room they were in with a curtain, and lay on one side of it. Then, after about 30 seconds, she looked across the screen, asked what Aidan was doing, and jumped into his lap. All that drama, all seemingly put to bed in less than a minute.

When people say they despise Carrie, or that they admire Sex and the city despite its protagonist, they only come to moments like this. It’s the scenes in which Carrie is constantly fluttering and thinking about love, commitment, and what she really wants from life that becomes unbearable. That’s when those vaguely meaningless thoughts and theories in her weekly column came to fruition. Everyone is definitely entangled in the horizontal fire. But opposition to that kind of behavior exposes a fundamental misunderstanding of what made the show so good, and why Carrie was. Yes, she Sex and the cityis the hero, but she’s also its villain.

To be a Carrie fan means constantly having to justify it. She’s the least obvious of the show’s main quartet to admit to being like, less sex, and more subversive than Samantha (Kim Cattrall), less humorous than Charlotte (Kristin Davis), and not as principled or frankly as smart as Miranda (Cynthia Nixon). This week’s arrival of the new Sex and the city sequel series And just like that just makes calling the star of your favorite show more divisive.

When Cattrall refused to appear on the new show, while allegedly having a history of conflicts with Parker, it led to a flurry of claims from fans and columnists about the show itself: that Samantha had Sex and the cityParker’s most important character, perhaps more screen time for Parker would lead to a weaker showing, with Carrie being the “worst”. Only the last is vaguely true, that Carrie is a nightmare in general. But she is a nightmare in the way that so many of us are, someone who embodies our worst moments of self-involvement and missteps, our romantic instincts. our bad arrogance and sometimes our ignorance.

In 2013, Emily Nussbaum argued in New Yorkers that the lack of appreciation for Sex and the city“difficult women” and especially Carrie originate from the habit of vanity. “[It’s] the assumption that anything stylized (or formulaic, or amusing, or humorous, or feminine, or explicit about sex rather than violence, or done cooperatively) must be lower ,” she wrote. Nussbaum’s essay went viral at the time, and is widely recognized as one of the best television reviews in recent memory. It profoundly compared Carrie to Tony Soprano, and dubbed her television’s “first female anti-hero”. In recent years, however, an opinion has surfaced that the show is barely foaming, and that getting in the way of making Carrie “likeable” is more of an issue than a point.

The reaction to Samantha’s withdrawal from the series is proof enough. “Not available Sex and the city without Samantha, ”had Rolling Stone, which praised the show’s funniest character and its beating heart. Nylon thinks that Carrie is “not really that likable” compared to: “She’s nagging, self-centered, and often annoying.” Atlantic wrote, in tribute to the departing Samantha, that she’s the only character that truly comes from: “Amidst the male-focused trajectory of the show’s main characters, Samantha stands out for her uncompromising determination. devoted to his own needs above all else.” The latter illuminates something else. While Carrie exists in the cultural consciousness as the epitome of big-city aspiration, it is Samantha who really seems to be the most fanciful – someone who is completely self-assured, self-assured, and poised. We all want to be that person, but instead, most of us are more likely to embody the elements of Carrie. Perhaps the result was that she was too real; our reflection that we don’t want to see.

Cynthia Nixon, Kristin Davis, Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall in the original ‘Sex and the City’

(Getty / Paramount)

But in the end, it was that that became the root of the show’s brilliance. Likewise how it gets its hooks in us. Our attachment to the show of course comes from the fact that it’s engaging and cinematic and witty, but mainly because Carrie can be outrageous: the time she lost Aidan’s dog, either engaged in a heartbreaking affair with her married ex Big (Chris Noth), or brought Miranda bagels to apologize for letting her down, and then Continue talking about yourself for 10 minutes. That is, she clearly understood what was wrong but continued to do it. It’s that she just loves drama, that Big is flashy and sleazy and dangerous and yet she still runs into the sunset with him.

And just like that… is still being kept under wraps and key, even the trailers have refused to reveal anything about the actual plot of the new show. We knew it would at least be more inclusive – women of color and non-binary characters, for the first time in the show’s history, seemed given actual material to work with – and in when the original host Michael Patrick King is back, the new writer’s room is much more diverse than the original run. Beyond all that, though, I hope it perpetuates Carrie’s mess, her flaws, and her flaws. I wanted to go crazy over her choices, and then admit to myself that it was just because they were a bit like mine. I believe Sex and the city could survive without Samantha, as well as the horrors of its best forgotten big-screen sequels. But I’m not sure if it can survive with a good Carrie.

‘And Just Like That…’ will air at 9 p.m. Thursday on Sky Comedy from December 9 and can also be streamed via NOW

https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/features/sex-and-the-city-reboot-carrie-samantha-b1969285.html And Just Like That: Carrie Bradshaw is Sex and the City’s most down-to-earth and messy character – is that why so many people hate her?

Emma Bowman

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