I read this month that it’s been 10 years since the final episode of Sex and the City was first shown on TV. 10 years!
I decided this would be a good time to go back and watch the whole series again to see how well it has stood the test of time, how it developed over the 12 years it was shown on TV, and, perhaps most significantly, just how different a viewing experience it is for me in my early 30s compared to my early 20s (or indeed 17, as I was when it all began).
Sex and the City inspires some strong feelings – particularly among those who have never seen it. Even those who love it give contrasting accounts of what it’s about. Some say they were sucked in by the fashion and glamour, others enjoyed the tales of dating dilemmas. Some viewers enjoyed the jokes (though it’s hard to imagine much laughter at Carrie’s dreadful puns), while others blubbed over scenes of cameraderie among the four female friends.
At the show’s peak it was fashionable to scoff at women who claimed to identify with any aspect of it, be it a character or a plot line. The basis of this seemed largely to be that the characters were TV-star attractive and had access to significant sums of cash, but it also seemed to reflect irritation at the idea that “ordinary” women might have actually have plenty of others things in common with the likes of uptight Charlotte, promiscuous Samantha or no-nonsense Miranda – particularly when it came to relationships with men.
Will Sex and the City prove to be a period piece, of little relevance to a world transformed by online dating (not to mention online porn)? Are we still debating the topics about which Carrie “couldn’t help but wonder”, or have we got most of it figured out by now? And how bad were those puns, exactly? There’s only one way to find out…
P.S. There will be spoilers. The blog is not intended for newbies who haven’t already watched the show, from start to finish. So if you haven’t, things will be spoiled. You have been warned!