“I don’t know if I can move forward, but I really don’t want to lose you”
– Miranda, to Steve
I’m not sure if the phrase “bi erasure” had been coined by the time this episode first aired, but it’s probably the most jarring so far in terms of sexual attitudes.
Carrie starts dating a bisexual guy, Sean, and the resulting conversation at brunch is an eye-opener. Despite being an actual sex columnist, Carrie finds it weird that he was “so open about it”, Miranda weighs in that “of course it’s a problem” and Samantha declares that the younger generation are “all about sexual experimentation”, as if to suggest it must be a phase.
Apparently all of the bisexual men and women in college ended up with men, which explains why there are no men left for our heroines. “I’m not even sure bisexuality exists,” adds Carrie for good measure. “I think it’s just a layover on the way to Gaytown.” Yikes! It’s not wonder that Charlotte wants everyone to “pick a side, and stay there”, but the others really show their vintage here.
Among the other features that date the episode are: everyone having their mind blown by a “drag kings” exhibition, Carrie saying her and Big were “apparently not Y2K compatible” and, um, a reference to Pokemon. Remember them? Oh wait…
Regular readers with know that I am not a huge fan of Steve. But his actions in this episode take the biscuit. Miranda arrives home from work to find him reclining on her sofa, watching basketball on the TV. It’s important to note that Steve and Miranda do not live together.
“Hey, what are you doing here?” she says.
He replies: “I’ve still got your key from when I fed your cat.”
WHAT? NOT COOL, STEVE. NOT COOL AT ALL.
He then quickly diverts her attention with a promise of Chinese food, then proceeds to police her use of her own television. I think it’s important to bear in mind that Steve lives in a complete shithole. No wonder Miranda freaks out when he tries to encroach further still on her turf.
She does hint at the home invasion when departing from brunch, but Carrie literally tugs at her sleeve and jokingly-not-jokingly whines “What about my problem?” rather than listening.
The episode confusingly conflates gender, gender stereotypes and sexuality – and ultimately opts for a cop-out. Carrie technically doesn’t break it off with Sean because he’s bisexual, but because he, Alanis Morissette and the rest of his multi-sexual young friends are weird and play Spin the Bottle at their house parties.
One more observation: for someone who recently told us she never registered to vote, Carrie sure does make a lot of digs about the then New York mayor, Rudy Giuliani. Pah.
Carrie’s column: Has the opposite sex become obsolete?
Fashion: There are some stylish looks on show at Charlotte’s exhibition launch.
I did not approve of Miranda’s floor-length purple satin nightie.
Charlotte made a very handsome guy when drag king photographer worked his magic.