“And Just Like That…”: an unexpected punch that says a lot
Sex and the City aficionados were eagerly awaiting And Just Like That… , the continuation of the adventures of Carrie, Charlotte and Miranda… without Samantha. From the first episode, a major turnaround occurs. We recommend that you stop reading here if you do not want to spoil the surprise.
Twist: Mr. Big dies! The screenplay decision to kill Carrie Bradshaw's husband (Sarah Jessica Parker) is fraught with symbolism, as his tumultuous relationship with the protagonist over the six seasons and the two films that followed has often been called toxic.
Comedian and host Tranna Wintour, who defines herself as a “mega fan ” of Sex and the City , experienced contradictory emotions while watching the scene. “I felt Carrie's grief while recognizing how problematic this relationship was,” she says.
An old friend of Carrie's points out at the funeral, in the second episode, saying: “Am I the only one who remembers how stupid he was with her?”
A funny and necessary retort, in the eyes of Tranna Wintour. “I started watching Sex and the City when I was 13 years old. The show normalized Big's treatment of Carrie, to the point where it affected my own life. ”
UQAM Media School professor Stéfany Boisvert is also ambivalent about the death of Mr. Big, a character she defines as representative of “hegemonic masculinity”.
One thing is certain, this punch confirms a change of tone in the series. “The choice to put Mr. Big to death in the first episode demonstrates a willingness to respond to several criticisms leveled at the original series,” she argues.
Carrie, Miranda and Charlotte in 2021
Indeed, the famous heroines of Sex and the City face the reality of 2021 in And Just Like That… For example, Carrie is now co-hosting a feminist podcast with a person non-binary.
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Another evocative scene: Back to school, Miranda awkwardly tries to be an ally of her black teacher. “She wants to demonstrate how woke she is, but rather shows how disconnected and ignorant she is”, laughs Tranna Wintour.
According to Stéfany Boisvert, this scene “clearly shows a desire to update the discourse in the series”, in particular by responding to criticisms of the lack of diversity.
In the new version, there is an explicit desire to show a more critical vision of the privileged position of the characters.
Stéfany Boisvert, professor at l & rsquo; UQAM & rsquo; s Media School
“There are times when it's a bit heavy, because we feel this mission to be more inclusive, but there is humor and 'learning in all this,' says Tranna Wintour, who watched the first episodes twice rather than one when they were released on Thursday.
No more sex in New York?
A crucial issue remains in the shadows in the eyes of Stéfany Boisvert: the sexuality of the protagonists, which was at the heart of the original series.
“ Sex and the City has turned social norms upside down by approaching women's sexuality from their perspective. In the revival , we talk very little about it, as if women after 50 no longer have a sex life or desire, “she laments.
If the next episodes – which are trickling out on the Crave platform – still do not address this issue, there would be a major hiccup, according to the cultural studies specialist.
“That would suggest there's still some unease about this, which I think is a bit problematic and sad for a series where that was the central topic.”
In that sense, the name change of the series would be anything but trivial, she adds.
And just like that & # 8230; without Samantha
Impossible to miss the absence of Samantha (Kim Kattrall) in And Just Like That … The writers immediately justify her absence by informing us that the character now lives in London.
“It was difficult to imagine the show without it, but at the end of the first two episodes, you realize it works, wonders Tranna Wintour. I feel a little bad for Kim Kattrall, because you don't even feel her absence, I even have a hard time imagining what the series would be like with her. ”
Podcast co-host Chosen Family is also delighted with the first episodes of the series. “I didn't expect to like it so sincerely. I was really worried that this sequel would be like the movies, which were so cliché. ”
It's been so long since Sex and the City was good!
Tranna Wintour, comedian and host
For this fan from the first hour there is redemption. “I always had a little embarrassment to share my great love for this series because of the values it conveyed. Now all great fans like me can be proud! “
One-try to go further
Author and columnist India Desjardins dissects the problematic relationship between Carrie and Mr. Big in his essay Mister Big or the glorification of toxic loves , published last spring by Quebec Amérique. She argues that this fictional scenario has greatly influenced our perceptions of romantic relationships and psychological violence. The writer had to decline our request for an interview about And Just Like That due to lack of time.