Sex and the City is unfortunately known as the show where four women constantly talk about sex and I believe this notion became popular after a few viewers watched a handful of episodes and never understood the context. But the larger audience of the show, who has religiously watched and re-watched the series, knows that this cult show has impacted and affected a generation of women when it comes to watching strong female characters on screen.
Sex and the City is about four women in their 40s as they navigate their life in New York City. Of course, these are all privileged well-to-do women who live in fancy apartments and wear couture but what SATC stresses upon through most of its run is, that this is a story of friendship.
In case you have not seen the show, let me give you a basic gist of the plot. The show is narrated by Sarah Jessica Parker’s Carrie Bradshaw. She along with her three other friends Miranda, Samantha and Charlotte are navigating their careers, relationships and life by being there for each other every step of the way.
The show’s four principal characters were written quite distinctly. So there’s the practical wise one (Miranda), the over-the-top one (Samantha), the shy one (Charlotte) and the Queen Bee (Carrie). These clear lines distinguishing their personalities helped the audience in connecting with them. It gave them enough personality that when they clashed, it made for big conflict. Through its run, SATC sees its women go through relationships, weddings, buying houses, gaining independence, having kids and making it through everything because they have a strong emotional support system in each other.
Sex and the City was seen as a revolutionary show back in the day. This was one of the earlier shows where women spoke their mind, uncensored. Since the title carried the word ‘sex’, the show had plenty of it but it was never voyeuristic. In fact, in many places, it wasn’t even titillating, it was just there. It was this matter of fact-ness about sex that drew in the female audience of the show as finally there was a show where women spoke to their friends like how they did in real life. The show wasn’t all that real with its characters’ expensive buying habits but that was the fantasy that made it desirable.
The makers tried to milk the success of the television series by making two movies and it’s best to forget that the films were a part of the same franchise.
It has been over 20 years since SATC first premiered and over time, it has been discovered by younger generations and of course, they don’t find it as ‘woke’ as people did back in the day. The show has gotten a lot of criticism for the lack of diversity and out of all the principal characters, only Miranda’s viewpoints have aged well. But to give credit where it’s due, SATC actively explored fashion, female friendship and found its way into television’s hall of fame.