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And just like that, Carrie Bradshaw, Miranda Hobbes, and Charlotte York are back in Manhattan and living very different lives than they were more than a decade ago. The highly anticipated Sex and the City reboot, And Just Like That, had a two-episode premiere on HBO Max, kicking things off with the episode, "Hello It's Me."
Warning: Spoilers Ahead! Do not read on if you haven't watched the first two episodes of And Just Like That.
The title proved fitting as fans were given more insight into just where the three friends are in life.
The last time viewers saw the fashion-loving group was in the 2010 film, Sex and the City 2, where the gang visited Abu Dhabi. Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) was married to Mr. Big (Chris Noth) but kissed her ex, Aidan (John Corbett). Mr. Big responded by buying her a black diamond ring. As for Miranda (Cynthia Nixon), she was fed up with being talked down to at work and quit her job at the law firm. Charlotte (Kristin Davis) was worried about her husband, Harry Goldenblatt (Evan Handler), and the family's younger, beautiful nanny. She was also struggling a bit with motherhood.
Eleven years have passed since that time, and now the women are living in a whole different world. The show starts with them all grabbing lunch and marveling at how exciting it is to be back out in their beloved New York City after being in lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Here's where the leading ladies are at in life the start of the series.
The former sex and relationship columnist is now a sex podcast host as she offers the cisgender female voice on the podcast XYandMe with host Che Diaz (Sara Ramirez), who describes themselves as a "queer, non-binary, Mexican-Irish diva, representing everyone else outside these two genders." While Carrie might have been a groundbreaking voice for female sexuality in the '90s, viewers quickly see just how uncomfortable she is in modern society when it comes to speaking publicly about the more NSFW topics.
"You had a column about sexuality in a mainstream newspaper in the f**king 1990s. You're the OG. You are bada**," Che tells Carrie.
"Well, you know, that was writing at a desk. I'm not a stand-up [comedian] like you two. I'm not comfortable with the more graphic content. It's not me," she insists.
Che then tells Carrie she needs to step up, so to speak, and she seems to take the task to heart. She even asks her husband, Mr. Big, to pleasure himself in front of her for research purposes.
In addition to her sexual exploration and changing work environment, the shoe-loving Manhattanite still dresses the part and doesn't hurt for emotional depth as she shows a more content side to married life with Mr. Big before his shocking death at the end of the first episode. In the second episode, we see Carrie attempting to hold it together as she plans Big's funeral, obsessing over the details and finding herself unable to sleep or cry. She wistfully watches a young couple out to lunch, with a businessman in a suit talking animatedly to his date. The moment harkens back to the show's roots and highlights just how far Carrie has come and all she has experienced.
The fearless lawyer has arguably the biggest transformation in the new reboot. She's still married to Steve Brady (David Eigenberg), who is facing hearing loss, and dealing with their 17-year-old son, Brady's, sexual exploits. It's Miranda's professional life, however, and uncomfortable social justice efforts that are at the main focus. She has quit corporate law after 30 years and is going back to school to get a Masters in human rights to pair with her law degree, "so hopefully I can become an advocate for women who need one."
This all seems well and good until Miranda gets to her first day of classes and immediately insults her new Columbia Law professor, Dr. Nya Wallace (Karen Pittman), with comments about the Black professor's hair, dropping pronouns that offend another student, and making several other cringeworthy remarks.
"I think I was so worried about saying the wrong thing in this climate, that I said all the wrong things," Miranda later tells Carrie.
She has several more uncomfortable interactions with Nya on the subway platform, where she shares what inspired her to go back to school.
"I was at home, watching CNN when the Muslim ban was initiated and I saw all those attorneys out at the airport offering assistance and the next thing I knew I was in a cab, going to JFK to do something, anything, you know? Because my wearing a pink p***y hat just wasn't cutting it," she says, clearly hoping to impress her professor.
She also calls out a security guard asking to see Nya's ID, citing lessons she learned from the book How to Be an Anti-Racist. But the professor isn't impressed, noting that Miranda seems to have "white savior" complex. Miranda and Nya finally seem to get to better footing when a group of pranksters attempt to steal Nya's bag on the subway, and Miranda hits one of them over the head with her book.
This isn't the only new character Miranda clashes with. At Mr. Big's funeral, she spots Che smoking weed with Brady and lashes out at Carrie's new boss, aggressively threatening the podcast host until Carrie later introduces the two and they immediately seem to hit it off.
There also seems to be hints that Miranda might struggle with alcohol dependency. She is seen going into a bar by herself and trying to order before they are open at 11 a.m. Then at the funeral, she forces the bartender to serve her before the rest of the guests, downing a neat bourbon in the middle of the day before saying a few words in Big's honor.
The art-loving homemaker has arguably the more predictable storyline in the show's reboot. She's laser focused on her two daughters, Lily and Rose, who couldn't be more opposite. Lily is an accomplished pianist who is happy to appease her mother's feminine fashion whims, while Rose is a skateboarding tomboy, who hates dresses, much to her mother's dismay.
Charlotte is also obsessed with getting in good with fellow parent Lisa Todd Wesley "LTW" (Nicole Ari Parker), a documentarian and humanitarian who is on Vogue's best dressed list. LTW makes it clear she's not a regular mom, she's a cool mom, by borrowing some of the group's French fries and wine, and trying to hide her embarrassment over her son's bad piano skills.
Though much of this iteration of the series focuses on the women aging, Charlotte is seemingly the outlier, insisting on dying her hair brown and urging Miranda to go back to red instead of gray.
She also struggles to deal with the loss of Mr. Big, frequently bursting into tears to the point where Carrie prefers not to have her around. Of course, Charlotte finds out and takes this personally, thinking Carrie blames her for forcing them to delay their trip to the Hamptons to see Lily's piano recital. The character doesn't seem to experience as much significant change in the show's first two episodes as her friends, but there are still plenty of episodes yet to air.
The absence of Samantha is acknowledged within minutes of the premiere episode. It is revealed that the publicist has moved to London, and that she no longer talks with her three closest friends. Carrie later discusses the feud between the women, noting it stemmed from her having to fire Samantha as her publicist due to the changing book industry. From that moment on, Carrie says that Samantha stopped returning her calls or texts. Miranda confirms that neither she nor Charlotte have heard from the PR powerhouse, despite trying to get in touch.
"I always thought the four of us would be friends forever," Carrie laments.
Samantha is also referenced in the second episode, sending a stunning formal arrangement to Big's funeral with the simple note, "Love, Samantha."
Showrunner Michael Patrick King spoke with ET's Rachel Smith at the show's premiere about Samantha's absence and whether there's a chance for her to return to the series.
"We conceived And Just Like That with just Carrie, Miranda and Charlotte to start. We knew Kim wasn't going do the series because she had, for her reasons, finished playing Samantha. So then it was the beginning point. Rather than ignore it, we decided to make it part of the story. We did everything we could to honor Samantha, who we love, the character and we know the fans love."
Fans are still waiting to meet the fourth main newcomer, Seema Patel (Sarita Choudhury), as she was not featured in the first two episodes, though Nya, Che, and LTW all proved to be complex additions to the series.
New episodes of And Just Like That drop every Thursday on HBO Max.