Lessons in Love and Life: Sex and The City

Sex and the City was a female empowerment show and proved that ladies definitely do it best. These amazing facts about SATC will illustrate why this show is now a classic.

Carrie Bradshaw Was Queen

Intro

The main character of the show Sex and the City was column writer and fashion “it” girl, Carrie Bradshaw. Played by actress Sarah Jessica Parker, Carrie Bradshaw was employed by a New York newspaper as writer of a sex column for the fictional paper The New York Star. The column documented her life experiences, which involved her lovers, her friends, and her fashion statement outfits. Her life lessons would become the life lessons for all women in New York City.

Carrie was meant to be the face of ’90s feminism and was many young women’s idol for career goals and relationships. Carrie lives through an on-again-off-again relationship with John James Preston, who she calls “Mr. Big.” This romance proves that even Carrie’s Upper East Side life isn’t a fairy tale. Carrie proves to women everywhere that,”maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates, and guys are just people to have fun with.”

Samantha Jones’ HIV Scare

Samantha Jones’ HIV Scare

Samantha Jones, played by Kim Cattrall was one of Carrie Bradshaw’s best friends and Public Relations agent on the show, Sex and the City. Samantha was known for having a feminist attitude, and believing that she was to be put first before any man. This lady definitely liked to drink and be intimate with any man she felt attracted to.

Jones’ real impact on television was her struggle in the episode, “Running With Scissors,” with an HIV scare. During the late ’90s, Sex and the City was one of the first shows to show a character dealing with the HIV epidemic, proving that HIV was not a “gay” disease. Samantha’s struggle with this disease scare proved that while having fun, being safe is extremely important. The show also proved to represent the real issues which were affecting women in the modern age.

Miranda the Single Mom

Miranda the Single Mom

Miranda Hobbes, played by Cynthia Nixon, was a strong, career-focused lawyer who was an example of women working hard while still having fun. Miranda was one of Carrie’s best friends, but her big storyline was far different, being a single mom. Miranda also struggled with the issue of thinking about having an abortion, which wasn’t truly covered on mainstream television during the time.

This taboo topic was important to cover, because women throughout the United States at the time were struggling with the thought of abortion, unplanned pregnancy, and single parenthood. Miranda’s choice to live as a single mom gave light to women out there struggling to find love while taking care of a baby. This working mother proved that motherhood is more fun with a Cosmopolitan in hand.

Charlotte’s Husband

Charlotte’s Husband

Charlotte York, played by Kristin Davis, was one of the core four characters on the show, Sex and the City and was a representation of what it was to be a New York socialite. Charlotte was kind, considerate, and was just looking to settle down with a handsome and rich man.

Charlotte’s first marriage with Trey proved that even when a marriage looks perfect on the outside, it can actually be riddled with secret problems. Charlotte’s search for a husband shows that while some women are looking for a partner, they might just realize how strong they are by themselves. Her struggle is very different from the other three characters, proving that friend groups are made up of many people with various personalities.

Mr. Big

Mr. Big

Mr. Big was Carrie’s love interest throughout the entire series of Sex and the City. Mr. Big, played by Chris Noth, was a very wealthy business man who loved Carrie for her crazy, wild, and out-there personality. Mr. Big also lived a very dramatic life, by breaking up with Carrie three times over the show, standing her up at the altar, and having an affair.

The character proved that even though two people truly and deeply love each other, sometimes other factors and life simply get in the way. In the last episode, Mr. Big sweeps Carrie off of her feet in Paris and reveals to her that his real name is John James Preston.

New York, New York

New York, New York

The entire show takes place in New York City, specifically the elite and expensive Upper East Side of Manhattan. The Upper East Side of Manhattan is known for its wealthy residents, high fashion, and amazing clubs, where Carrie and her crew enjoy cocktails on the house.

The show’s New York background also provides its “glitz and glamour” feeling, and gives it a raw edge. During one of the seasons, the ladies even venture out to California but hate it due to its fake and slow feel. New York City is known for being the city that never sleeps, parties too much, and is way too expensive. This is just how Carrie, Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte like it.

The Big Questions

charlotte-satc.jpg

Even though the show is about four women, some of the plot lines were incredibly progressive and feminist. Samantha’s HIV scare and Miranda’s question of abortion were not the only far left topics which were talked about. One storyline which was extremely revolutionary was the real reason Charlotte wanted a divorce.

Charlotte’s husband Trey suffered from “not getting it up,” which was not discussed on cable television before. This topic is more than just for shock value, it is to prove that women desire the same things in the bedroom as men do. In the film version of Sex and the City, the topic of depression is tackled when Carrie’s marriage falls apart. The topic of mental health is sometimes steered away from, but this franchise chose to tackle it head-on.

All The Awards

All The Awards

The show’s success among mainstream media was matched by how many critics loved it as well. The show received over 50 Emmy nominations throughout its entirety and won seven of them including two for “Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series,” “Outstanding Comedy Series,” “Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series,” and several more.

The show has also been nominated for over 24 Golden Globe Awards and has won eight. Time Magazine also listed the show as one of the greatest 100 shows all time!

No One Got Along with Kim Cattrall

No One Got Along with Kim Cattrall

The staged drama on this show was literally nothing compared to what was happening behind the scenes. Everyone really hated Kim Cattrall, who played the hard-working and self-sufficient Samantha Jones. Cattrall hated the fact that the top billing was given to Sarah Jessica Parker, who played the role of Carrie Bradshaw. During the final season, Kim Cattrall signed on to act in the film, Ice Princess, instead of directly signing on to film The Sex and the City Movie.

This angered her coworkers and proved that Cattrall was solely looking out for her own top billing and money. After the flop of Ice Princess, Cattrall finally signed on to make two Sex and the City movies, but Cattrall and the rest of the crew still have some seriously bad beef between them.

Some REALLY Hated It

Some REALLY Hated It

Even though it seemed that many critics thought the televisions series was ahead of its time, some critics thought the show was degrading towards women and was even anti-feminist.

Tanya Gold of The Daily Telegraph stated, “Sex and the City is to feminism what sugar is to dental care. The first clue is in the opening credits of the television show. Carrie is standing in a New York street in a ballet skirt, the sort that toddlers wear. She is dressed, unmistakably, as a child. And, because she is a sex columnist on a newspaper, a bus wearing a huge photo of her in a tiny dress trundles past. ‘Carrie Bradshaw knows good sex,’ says the bus. And there, before any dialogue hits your ears, you have the two woeful female archetypes that Sex and the City loves—woman as sex object and woman as child.” The show did rely on age old stereotypes to make a point, but did so in an ironic and groundbreaking way.

The Movies

The Movies

Even though the show was a commercial and critical success, the movies couldn’t live up to the show’s legacy and name. The two movies, Sex and the City, and Sex and the City 2, focused on the two loves of Carrie’s life, Mr. Big and Aidan. The first film, Sex and the City focuses on Carrie’s relationship with Mr. Big after he leaves her at the altar, while also focusing on the rocky relationship and break-up between Samantha Jones and her boyfriend, Smith.

The second movie takes place in Abu Dhabi, where Samantha Jones is helping Smith film a movie on set. Both of these movies were panned by critics, even though they racked in the money. Sex and the City was ranked as the highest grossing romantic comedy of 2008, proving everyone can’t get enough of these four saucy ladies.

The Carrie Diaries

The Carrie Diaries

The franchise was expanded again with a prequel entitled The Carrie Diaries, which takes place in the ’80s showing of a teenage Carrie Bradshaw. The show was created by Sex and the City writer and creator, Candace Bushnell for the channel The CW in 2013.

Carrie Bradshaw was played by the tween star AnnaSophia Robb, portraying Carrie Bradshaw as a sex crazed and fashion-obsessed high schooler. The show was greeted with mixed reviews, saying that even though the writing was good, Robb’s performance as Bradshaw couldn’t hold a candle to the original character. The show was canceled in 2014 after only two seasons, which were considered lackluster.

Aidan Got Gypped

Aidan Got Gypped

Aidan, played by John Corbett was one of Carrie’s boyfriends in the original series Sex and the City definitely got the short end of the stick. Aidan was a loving and simple man who made furniture and who loved Carrie for who she was, but couldn’t keep up with her metropolitan (and expensive) New York life.

Carrie in the show ended up cheating on Aidan, even though they were engaged. This storyline tends to split fans right down the middle, forcing them to choose if they are Team Aidan or Team Mr. Big. In the end, Mr. Big wins out, but Aidan does make an appearance in the second film Sex and the City 2. We still love you, Aidan!

The Fashion!

The Fashion!

Even though Sex and the City was about the, well you know, the show was also about who Carrie was wearing. Carrie’s wardrobe included different New York-based designers, such as Manolo Blahnik, Balenciaga, and Prada. Even though Carrie wrote a weekly article, she was able to buy all of these top designer brands.

The most iconic fashion scene in the entire show is Carrie’s opening dress, which is supposed to represent the Chanel line and the ultra feminine outfit. Carrie also is robbed at one point and the robber takes her shoes, which is the most expensive thing Carrie has on her person at the time.

The LGBTQ Community

The LGBTQ Community

Sex and the City was one of the first shows to try to accurately represent the LGBTQ community. One of Carrie’s best friends, Stanford Blatch is a proud gay man whose character is used to explain the issues going on in the LGBTQ community. One of the more progressive LGBTQ storylines was when Samantha begins to date a woman and tells her friends that she is coming out as a bisexual.

Samantha is quoted as saying, “I’m a try-sexual, I’ll try anything at least once.” The storyline was one of the first to detail sexual fluidity, rather than just rigid gender stereotypes. Samantha was an incredibly groundbreaking character for her want to try sexual things with people, not just men.

Ruined How We Thought Writers Lived

Ruined How We Thought Writers Lived

Even though the show conveys women and what it is to be a female in Manhattan, the show had some very large inconsistencies. Carrie Bradshaw’s income and lifestyle NEVER match up! The girl is writing a weekly column for an off brand newspaper and is able to afford $800 shoes just on a whim?

We think not. The problem with this show is that it proves the wage issues that women in workplace receive, but doesn’t accurately depict them. Both Miranda and Samantha struggle against their male counterparts in their business and suit and tie jobs, but Carrie can drop thousands. The show’s laws of economics do not match up and make writing seem like a million dollar job.

Feminism’s Bread And Butter

Feminism’s Bread And Butter

Even though some critics believe this show actually puts feminism back a few steps, the show Sex and the City uses key feminist stereotypes to launch the cause forward. The entire characterization of Samantha and Carrie prove that women can work hard, play hard, and be a mother or wife if they want to as well.

The show’s basic concepts of feminism allow the show to focus on character development, which is why so many people play the game, “which Sex and the City character are you?” The show’s underlying feminist tones don’t take over the show but prove how great it is to be a woman as you fall in love with the characters.

Candace Bushnell Was The Real-Life Carrie

Candace Bushnell Was The Real-Life Carrie

The creator and writer of Sex and the City, Candace Bushnell was the inspiration behind the characters of the HBO show. Candace Bushnell’s book, Sex and the City was a compilation of her columns in The New York Observer, which is a real publication.

Bushnell’s column solely dealt with sex, lifestyle, and being a woman in New York City, just like Carrie. Bushnell has stated in interviews and to the press that she created Carrie Bradshaw, using her own initials and her own life as a way of privacy. Carrie Bradshaw is simply the creation or the alter ego of the real life New York socialite Candace Bushnell.

Miley Cyrus?

Miley Cyrus?

Before Miley Cyrus cut her hair off and grew into womanhood, she was the prize of Disney and seen as the good girl star of Hannah Montana. Miley Cyrus appears in the second movie, Sex and the City 2, where she plays herself.

Cyrus is seen in the movie wearing the same outfit as Samantha Jones, and is meant to be part of the movie’s comic relief. Her appearance in this movie upset many of Cyrus’ good natured and wholesome Disney fans because the movie at the time was rated R, which is not the “Disney audience.” Cyrus’ appearance in this movie is said to mark the end of her “good girl” era and the beginning of adulthood for Miley.

Don’t Live By Anyone Else’s Rules

Don’t Live By Anyone Else’s Rules

The true legacy of Sex and the City is that women are meant to have fun, live for themselves, and succeed. The best quote out of Sex and the City is “Maybe mistakes are what make our fate… without them what would shape our lives? Maybe if we had never veered off course we wouldn’t fall in love, have babies, or be who we are. After all, things change, so do cities, people come into your life and they go. But it’s comforting to know that the ones you love are always in your heart… and if you’re very lucky, a plane ride away.”

This quote embodies the theme of the show; that life isn’t just a destination, it’s a journey. And hopefully, there will cosmos and martinis along the way!