Before going into anything, I will say this- I have and always will be a fan of Sex and the City. The show came on when I was in middle school and high school, so I didn’t really get around to watching it during its original installment, however I recently purchased a Roku which includes HBO Now and has the entire series available at my disposal. Upon rewatching the series twice after many years of small clips I would pass through on basic cable, I have come to the conclusion that many men and women fear stating- Carrie Bradshaw is a fantasy character that no one, I repeat no one, should emulate in real life. For so many reasons, this is true. As someone who understands the Manhattan scope of dating, living, and so much more, Carrie represents really the anti of what our city has become. This includes, when the show was on the air. Here is why.
The character itself, from my point of view, always seemed to have this diluted aspect about her, which stems from an enormous ego and high expectations from each man that she dates, as well as the friends that she quite frankly never took the advice from. First and foremost, let’s get the obvious out of the way- how in the hell does this woman live in a Brownstone in the Upper East Side for $750 a month, while doing a once a week column for a tabloid newspaper? I write five to six times a day and can’t afford a run down, piece of crap studio on some scary street in Brooklyn, so the fact that she not only affords this type of place but then can spend nearly $40,000 dollars on Manolo Blahnik shoes and designer dresses really screws with a lot of young girls and guys minds who move here thinking that they will be their own version of Carrie. I would love to know who her people are, in the following way- her accountant, her landlord, and her “fashion” drug dealer that allows her to live this extravagant lifestyle while working once a week. Doesn’t really cut it for me.
How Carrie is regarding her three mainstays and her gay on the show, baffles me. This is a woman who for almost seven years never, I mean ever, took the advice from her friends who simply were just looking out for her, in their own unique way. I always felt that Carrie was an amalgamation of the four characters, all wrapped in one tiny package. She has the very cynical side of Miranda, which came out in every relationship she had, she also had a bit of the Samantha aspect which played its part early in the series but always laughed at any advice that Charlotte gave, who simply just tried to see the best in things. There were so many situations that made Carrie so unbelievably selfish, I had a hard time really understanding why we were rooting for this character in the first place.
Let’s take for instance, when Charlotte gets engaged to Harry, and then it turns right back into “Oh great, by the way, I was broken up with on a Post-It”, which then led to the happiness of said engagement trumped by Carrie’s horrific feelings about a guy that she practically alienated in the first place by her success and desire to have him wear a $400 shirt, and leaving the scene making Charlotte feel like shit about something she is supposed to be happy about. Or, when Miranda pulls her neck out, and because Carrie has a meeting, she decides to send Aidan over to help Miranda, who is naked on the floor. Nice friend. Even after that, when Carrie comes over, and Miranda looks like The Elephant Man in her neck brace, Carrie STILL makes it all about her. Or, her incredible judgment of Samantha’s sex life, meanwhile what is Carrie’s career? Oh, right, a sex columnist. Whether it was Samantha getting down with a UPS guy, trying something out with a gay couple, the judgment was through and through with her character and that stayed that way pretty much until the end. That of course, transcended into her relationships as well.
Take for instance, half of season three, when she is dating Aidan, who has practically no flaws, which in turn freaks her the fuck out and then starts having an affair with her twice broken up Mr. Big, all to have it crushed in the end when his wife discovers her in their apartment, and then she tells Aidan on the day of ONE OF HER BEST FRIEND’S WEDDING. You know, because god forbid one day isn’t about her? That whole situation has people telling her the right thing to do, IE Miranda at the bar simply stating what we are all thinking, “What about Aidan?”, to then Charlotte, who blunty tells her “You don’t think about what will happen to her, you only think about what happens to you. She’s just the idiot wife”. After hearing that, Carrie then ignores it all and fucks Big in his bed at his house. What the hell, seriously what the hell. Then, after all is said and done, and Aidan rightfully leaves her, she decides to get lunch with Big even after Miranda states it is a bad choice, which she then deflects her insecurities on Miranda, causing them to fight. In one ear, and out the other.
The fact that Carrie didn’t end up alone on the series finale is yet another thing that confused me. Let’s quickly run down the relationships. Season one, she dates Big, knowing the type of man that he is, tries to change him in every way possible, and then leaves him when his mother doesn’t recognize her. The writings were on the wall in the first place. Season two, they get back together, and once again Carrie tries to change everything about him, only to find that he has to move to Paris, to which she throws a burger at him and breaks up with him again, even before he tries to calmly work it out. Then we know what happens with Aidan the first time, and then the second time he takes her back, and she finds every way possible to not marry him, including getting a rash from a shit wedding store that no one should ever go to. Oh, and she hates the ring that he got her. Because, you know, god forbid a guy does something nice? Wait, didn’t she hate the computer that he bought her after SHE fucked her own one up? Unreal.
So that of course, ended. Then we had the blip of a relationship with Jack Berger, which is previously discussed, to then the final relationship with The Russian, who she decides to leave after getting tired of walking around a free apartment for a week in Paris. Wow. The girls, after all this time, begrudgingly tell Big to go to Paris and tell her he loves her, and she finally gets what she wants from a man after three tries.
Maybe I am a bit cynical here, but after watching this show so many times, I fail to understand why anyone would root for someone who is this selfish and delusional that she has everything she wants from so many aspects, but takes it for granted, each and every time.