If any show has a dedicated fanbase, it's Sex and the City. Not many television series end up with two movies (though we're not going to acknowledge that second one, because YEESH) and a secondary spin-off series. However, if you're a longtime, die-hard fan of the OG SATC, here's what you need to know about And Just Like That.
'And Just Like That' vs. 'Sex and the City'
And Just Like That is just...different. Just an overall different vibe. It's quite possible that the first two episodes stand out from the rest of the season (and if you've already watched, then you know why). It's not bad different. Not at all. It's just a totally different show for many different reasons. One thing that hasn't changed, though, is the dynamic between Carrie, Charlotte, and Miranda. And yes, they still have brunch.
I'd be remiss in writing this review if I didn't acknowledge that the original series hasn't aged well. Why? Well, because most things don't. The white privilege, the entitlement, the lack of diversity, the homophobia, the transphobia, the biphobia...the list goes on as to why some (many) reruns of Sex and the City make us cringe 20 years later.
The OG show is a great example of "Many Things Can Be True At The Same Time."
Unfortunately—and this is a hard pill to swallow—'90s shows like this one and Friends represented the way much of society viewed social issues at the time. Particularly the non-marginalized, non-disenfranchised, privileged parts of society.
The OG show is a great example of "Many Things Can Be True At The Same Time." It's an entertaining, addictive series with lots of pretty clothes and fun storylines while also being incredibly problematic at times. But the show was about upscale, elite Manhattan life at its core, and you can't say it didn't stay true to that.
And Just Like That goes so far in the opposite direction of the original series that it's very, very clear while you're watching it that you're supposed to feel, perhaps, it's trying too hard. You know that feeling you get when you're watching a Ben Stiller movie, where you just don't know how long you can watch a person screw up? Yeah, there are moments of that.
But it's better than not trying at all, right? Maybe it's only noticeable because there's no Samantha Jones to break up the tension or push the envelope a bit. (Yes, they address Samantha's absence. Respectfully and honestly. But she sure is missed.)
Sara Ramirez is a new face in the series, playing Carrie's podcast boss and "queer nonbinary Mexican-Irish diva" Che. Two Black actresses, Karen Pittman and Nicole Ari Parker are also featured in the main cast as Dr. Nya Wallace, Miranda's professor and Lisa Todd Wexely, Charlotte's new mom friend.
From the looks of the trailer that plays after episode two, it seems like the show returns to its more recognizale roots.
The first two episodes focus largely on the realities of life in your late fifties—health issues, career issues, relationship issues—something that's rarely seen on-screen. But Carrie, Miranda, and Charlotte are all well into middle-age, and while the show honors that, it also embraces it.
Because life can still be fun and full for women past their childbearing years (yes, especially if you're rich like they are). We desperately need more art featuring women in later phases of life, please and thanks.
From the looks of the trailer that plays after episode two, it seems like the show returns to its more recognizable roots and that plenty of fun and notable moments are yet to come.
But the first two episodes are largely not that. Which is fine! But like any big change or shift in expectations, there's a lot to process. And without further ado, I shall do just that.
50 thoughts I had while watching the premiere of And Just Like That.
- Ooh, brunch with the girls! And apparently the pandemic did occur in the SATC-iverse.
- BITSY VON MUFFLING!
- Oh, Bitsy assumes Samantha died of COVID (she did not).
- Brady is old enough to have sex? Ugh, I'm old.
- Carrie is getting real about the publishing industry. I'm so glad we're not pretending column writers and book authors make real money.
- Whoever is playing Charlotte's new friend is quite possibly the most beautiful woman I have ever seen?
- "It's the Park Avenue equivalent of 'every kid gets a trophy'" is a *chef's kiss* Miranda line.
- Oooh it sounds like what went down with "Samantha" is really what went down with Kim Cattrall.
- Miranda does NOT need red hair to be Miranda and I love that for her.
- Sorry Charlotte, no teen girl wants Mommy picking out floral dresses for them. Gen Z does not care about Oscar de la Renta, as tragic as that may be.
- Harry! God, I love me some Harry Goldenblatt.
- Ah, Big. Good ol' Mr. Big. Carrie and Big still look so good together.
- Aw, they're playing old albums. Reminds me of the episode where he moved to Napa.
- No, no one wants to go to a teen piano recital. Ever. Kids concerts are fun for exactly no one.
- LOL at Big using a Hilaria Baldwin Spanish accent while talking about Allegra, his Peleton instructor from BarTHelona.
- Oh, Miranda is drinking...before class...at 10 a.m. Huh.
- OK no, young students do not stop everything they're doing to stare at older students. No one cares.
- Oh, Miranda is embarassing herself. Oh no. Ohhhhh noooooo. NOOOO MIRANDA NO.
- MIRANDA. NO. OMG NO. JUST NO.
- Please, make it stop.
- Is this really true to who Miranda Hobbs is? Why does this feel weird? What is happening?
- OMG THIS SCENE IS STILL GOING ON.
- If she touches her professor's braids, I'm going to pass out.
- OK, whew, Carrie's podcast should be fun.
- Oh. It's not.
- Mmm...not sure it's cool that Che is preaching consent while pressuring Carrie to share very intimate details about her sex life when she's clearly uncomfortable.
- I was wondering if there'd be any sex in this reboot. I love that they're showing a "mature" couple having an intimate moment even if it's not occurring organically.
- LOL classic Big, can't stay serious for long.
- Oh, a cigar before a hardcore Peleton ride? A lingering look of admiration at his wife before she departs? Oh no. No. Nooo. The foreshadowing here is giving me a stomachache.
- Charlotte, enough with the dresses! Leave Rose alone!
- STANFORD! Oh, Stanny. (Cue a lump in my throat thinking about poor Willie Garson.)
- At least Miranda is self-aware enough to know she made a fool of herself in class.
- Tbh, peeing in men's rooms should be more normalized.
- Miranda with the purse wine! Can't even blame her for this occasion, honestly.
- Lily is amazing!
- Ok Brady, time to learn that "please behave respectfully in public" is not the same thing as SEX SHAMING.
- Big's Peleton ride with Allegra has begun. Why do I feel sick about this?
- Oh, the juxtaposition of Lily's solo with Big's Peleton ride...yeah, starting to know why I feel sick about this.
- Oh no. GET OFF THE BIKE.
- SHUT UP ALLEGRA
- Get off the bike, PLEASE. You are not well, John!
- Oh no. Ohnonononononono.
- Oh yay, Carrie still has her old apartment! Because of course she does.
- Call 911, John. Call Carrie. OMG NO.
- What is happening? Is he OK? He's breathing, whew. He's still conscious.
- Oh my god, Carrie, please call 911. I don't care if it's too late. CALL FOR HELP.
- He blinked. He's still with us! Oh no. OH NO.
- Oh, my heart. It's breaking for Carrie. Her wedding shoes, OMG.
- He died in her arms. This is my worst nightmare and now I'm going to think about this for the rest of the day.
- THAT LAST LINE!!! Oy. What a gut-punch.
Suffice to say after that, and episode two, I'm more than ready for the rest of the season's pick-me-ups. Each episode of And Just Like That will be available every Thursday on HBO Max.