I used to love Sex and the City. It was a great way to shut off the brain and indulge in a glorified fashion show with women living the life an insignificant percentage of people actually live. The shoes, the outfits, the hair..all very nice at some point. But as time went on and I got on with my life, it would come to disappear from my life. But then every channel under the sun started running it and re-running it every night, with different series on each channel so if you weren’t up on the goings-on of Ms. Bradshaw and Co. then all it looked like was desperate very well-dressed women apparently past their sell-by date looking for a man. But that’s not why I’m ranting.
As a lot of my thinking goes on at night, and therefore all my college work gets done then too, I found myself leaving the TV on in the background as I got stuck into whatever mountain of work had been bestowed on me. And that show was usually what I would leave on, more often than not because i had already seen the episode, and mostly because it didn’t demand anything of me as a viewer. Then I started looking at it with a critical eye. Granted, I should have been using my critical eye to elevate my English Lit essay to an ‘A’ standard, but the past is the past. I saw something very disconcerting in Carrie. As I saw the different episodes from the various series, I began to see a timeline of her disintegration as a confident secure woman.
If I was to do a PhD on women and their portrayal in film and TV, she would be my prime example of a weak woman. I’ve watched her change her personality and her fashion to suit every guy she’s ever been interested in, from uptown and city chic with Big, to gingham crop shirts and pigtails with Aidan (whom she should REALLY be with but that’s cos I love him!). However, you can forgive that. I mean, we’ve all made slight modifications to our outer selves and inner musings when courting potential sweethearts, it’s a psychological drive we have to establish an affinity with that person and help us bond. I include both sexes in that.
It wasn’t until I watched the movie that it really hit me just how spineless the character of Carrie really was. She started out being a woman who had always wanted the wedding of her dreams with the man of her dreams wearing the dress of her dreams. She eventually settled for a courthouse marriage with about 10 guests and wearing a pants suit, getting married to the same man who dumped her in front of New York society and all her friends, leaving her in a designer dress-shaped heap on the steps of the hotel cradling what was left of her sanity. And we were led to believe this was her happy fairytale ending. Cheers.
Now before you get all riled up, I’m not for one minute knocking small weddings. The idea of a big wedding makes me want to create a J-Ro shaped hole in the wall frankly, so that’s not an issue. What I took exception to was how Carrie did a complete 180 degree flip on who she was just to snare her man. This was Mr. Big, who has known her for 10 years, and couldn’t have been ignorant of the fact that fashion and all its trimmings were a huge part of Carrie’s life. This was never going to be a small intimate affair by anyone’s standards. He knew this before the question was even popped. He knew before they moved in. He knew before he ever went to Paris on that big gesture of being her knight in shining armour to rescue her from The Russian. So what gives?
Fair enough, he bowed out in the most chicken shit way possible. That’s not what annoys me. What annoys me is her decision to go sailing right back into his arms without an iota of compromise. She threw all her dreams out the window just to get the ring on her finger. A big wedding, while not the most appealing to me, or very many others, was what she wanted and reflected her personality and who she was. And her settling for the small nuptials and discreet classy trouser suit outfit, while a gorgeous idea for some, just wasn’t what we as viewers were led to believe Carrie Bradshaw stood for. She gave it all away just to get married. And that annoys the crap out of me.
Roll on SATC 2…let’s see what kind of a doormat Carrie will strap to her back this time..