“And Just Like That..”: was it really necessary?

The second season of “And Just Like That..” just premiered, and it’s worth wondering if the first season was necessary.

Still from the series 'And just like that...'

Photo: HBO Max

LatinAmerican Post | July Vanesa López Romero

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Leer en español: “And Just Like That..”: ¿era realmente necesaria?

“Sex and the City” has been one of the most culturally impactful American series in the history of television. Its premiere in 1998 marked a before and after in the representation of women in the audiovisual industry through female characters over 30 who were single, successful in their careers, self-confident and had openly active sexual lives.

At the time, it was seen as a very liberal product. However, if you sit down to watch “Sex and the City” today, you will find many situations that today would be called problematic, such as relationships that we see today as toxic and dependent. In addition, one could say that the series was not very inclusive, since its four protagonists were upper-middle-class and heterosexual women (if we ignore that time that Samantha decided to try a lesbian relationship). This vision changed thanks to the simple passage of time and a paradigm shift regarding the role of women and the stereotypes it carries.

Now, we can’t entirely blame the series for not having foreseen this paradigm shift and not having created an even more disruptive script. In the long run, watching content that originated before 2010 (and even more recent) is knowing that, when viewed from a more conscious perspective, one will come across things that you may not agree with or find problematic. This does not imply that you cannot enjoy a series or film and that you can even find hints of progressivism.

The curious thing with the “Sex and the City” franchise, and with many other productions that have chosen this path, is that it not only stayed there, but decided to make a sequel adapted to the values that prevail in its current target audience. This is how “And Just Like That…” was born, which follows in the footsteps of Carrie, Miranda, and Charlotte 11 years after “Sex and the City 2”. This series sought to renew itself by touching on more current themes and including more prominent homosexual and racialized characters. It didn’t go very well.

Read also: Kim Cattrall in “And Just Like That” and the Most Memorable Comebacks in Series and Movies

The failure of “And Just Like That…”

The sequel to the series promised much more than it delivered. The trailers showed an update of the ideals that built the script and, of course, the fans of the original were happy, although cautious, to see their favorite New Yorkers in action again. However, the first episode left very little to look forward to and, without having reached its peak, “And Just Like That…” took a catastrophic fall. The rest of the season was also not well received. Critics and fans were dissatisfied with a script that seemed to want to put all the politically correct issues in 8 50-minute episodes to fulfill that renewal promise.

This point resonated a lot because it seemed that the sequel went against the very essence of “Sex and the City”, in which bland topics were touched on and in the middle of them you could glimpse a hint of subversive commentary, without necessarily being out of it. “And Just Like That…”, on the contrary, seems to have the need to destroy its characters, to push them to limits that are not really necessary, to make politically correct comments that are not even woven into the situations or the script, rather they are extremely literal and obvious.

In addition, the sequel was missing one of the most beloved, fun characters that gave a particular spark to the original series: Samantha. Due to external conflicts between Kim Cattrall and Sarah Jessica Parker, the former decided not to return for the sequel. It seems that his absence led the writers to create absurd situations to fill the void left by the character.

Now, with the premiere of the second season of “And Just Like That…”, came the pleasant surprise that Samantha is once again part of the characters, which shows that perhaps the production listened to the claims of the fans. Hopefully, they would have also paid attention to the inconsistencies and problems that were made in the first season and the new one will play out in a less forced way.

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