Body shaming, sexism, lookism and notes of racism: 9 things from “Sex and the City” for which the series would be condemned in 2020
Sarah Jessica Parker in Sex and the City
Exactly 22 years ago, the first episode of Sex and the City was released, starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, Kim Cattrall and Kristin Davis. This series was a wild success among women (and not only!) around the world, who whiled away their evenings watching the next episode and sincerely empathized with the main characters because of their problems in relations with the opposite sex. To this day, the series does not give up its positions, but today’s millennials look at it with a completely different look. Over the years, the world has changed rapidly, many values and attitudes have been revised, and what was considered generally accepted at the beginning of the century began to seem strange, outdated, and even completely unacceptable. Alas, our favorite series also could not stand the test of time. In the new material, I collected the main messages of the Sex and the City series,
Misconceptions about the life of a freelancer
Many modern viewers of Sex and the City notice that Carrie Bradshaw, throughout all six seasons of the series, demonstrates an overly rosy idea of u200bu200bworking as a freelance journalist. The life of the main character, who writes her own column in the New York Star on sex and relationships, mainly consists of daily brunches with friends at a coffee shop near her house, attending social events, parties and fashion weeks, and a short "report" about it all. the size of a couple of thousand characters of a Word document, which she sits down to write at the very end of the day.
In fact, even the most successful freelance journalists lead a completely different lifestyle: they are forced to spin like a squirrel in a wheel in order to get an order for new material, to have time to work in several publications at once (a column in one newspaper, as a rule, is not so generously paid), communicate regularly with his fellow journalists and collaborate with several news outlets in parallel to somehow stay afloat financially.
Many critics also wonder how, with a freelance salary, Carrie not only rented an apartment in midtown Manhattan, but also regularly bought new models of her beloved Manolo Blahnik and other haute couture items that made up her entire rather big wardrobe in boutiques.
Body shaming on girlfriends
In many episodes, Samantha Jones tells Carrie’s girlfriends, Charlotte and Miranda about the eating disorder she suffers from relationship problems with her young boyfriend, blue-eyed blond Smith Jarod. Because of these experiences, Samantha often gains weight, after which she engages in self-flagellation in an attempt to throw off unwanted kilograms.
However, instead of supporting her friend and instilling in her confidence that she is good at any weight, Carrie only adds fuel to the fire. In a conversation with Samantha, she is sincerely surprised at how she managed to start herself up like that, and directly tells her friend about the need to go on a diet. Well, modern feminists would call such a relationship a telling example of a toxic friendship!
Racism between the lines
Millennials were able to discern in the series "Sex and the City" and notes of racism. Remember how during the first calls of her boyfriend, Russian artist Alexander Petrovsky, performed by Mikhail Baryshnikov, Carrie hung up just because he had a strong accent? All this time, Bradshaw treated the man on the other end of the line with a strong prejudice and became interested in him only after he introduced himself as a famous Russian artist.
When the New York Star columnist realizes her mistake, she lies to Alexander that her fictitious sister used to talk to him on the phone. Everything that happens underlines Carrie’s snobbish attitude towards everything that happens outside of glamorous Manhattan.
Irresponsibility towards friends
Because of her love to spend the last money on a new pair of shoes and her inability to save money, Carrie often faces financial difficulties. Therefore, when she once again finds herself on the verge of ruin and almost loses her apartment in Manhattan, her friends are no longer surprised and, as usual, give her a helping hand.
Samantha and Miranda then offered to lend Bradshaw, while the wealthiest of her friends, Charlotte, decided to remain silent in this situation. Afterwards, a deeply outraged Carrie bursts into Charlotte’s apartment demanding to know why she, unlike Samantha and Miranda, didn’t offer her any money. This scene shocked many modern viewers of the show, because hardly anyone would allow himself to show such indiscretion and familiarity in real life, especially when communicating with friends.
Sexism and lookism rolled into one
For someone whose career depended entirely on observing people and their relationships, Carrie was downright unprofessional and biased. Remember how the main character of "Sex and the City", together with her friends, conditionally divided the girls into two groups: "thoroughbred" and wayward women with curly hair, like Carrie, and "simple" women with straight hair, like Mr. Big’s bride, Natasha.
Not only is this division superficial in itself, but the idea that Carrie could in principle support the fact that girls can be simple or complex seems incredibly dated. The reference in this episode to the melodrama "The Way We Were" from 1973 only emphasizes the sexism that comes through between the lines.
Misconceptions about psychotherapy
In the 21st century, turning to a psychotherapist has already become the norm and commonplace. A huge number of organizations in the world today say that you should not be afraid to ask for help if you have psychological problems. In the TV series Sex and the City, this idea was stubbornly denied.
After parting with the "man of dreams" Carrie Bradshaw continued to obsess over him for a long time. At some point, friends began to worry about Carrie’s psychological state and suggested that she seek the help of professionals. Carrie, in turn, denies the existence of a problem and claims that she can deal with her emotions on her own. Instead, Bradshaw sarcastically remarks that what she needs is not a therapist, but new friends.
This episode demonstrates not only the substitution of concepts – a priori, professional psychological help cannot be equated with even the best support of friends – but also a denial that minor troubles without the necessary therapy in the future can result in major mental health problems.
Toxic relationships and infantilism
At the suggestion of Carrie and her friends, Mr. Big is constantly presented in the series as a troubled ex-boyfriend who cannot fully understand himself. However, if you look at this situation in more detail, you can see that Carrie was also toxic in this relationship. In fact, the "dream man" has always been open about his fear of commitment. Carrie herself was often deceived by her own expectations, did many rash acts behind his back and liked to discreetly discuss why he chooses just such women.
In fact, Carrie’s way of mending her broken heart after a hard breakup is very similar to the tactics of inexperienced schoolgirls who, in conversation with their friends, make fun of the ex-boyfriend’s lifestyle and throw mud at his new girlfriends.
Superficial attitude to work
Many viewers noticed that Carrie’s columns for the newspaper consisted mostly of naive discourse about relationships. In the materials of the main character of Sex and the City there was no analysis, no deep reasoning and advice – on the contrary, they more often misled readers.
In fact, Carrie never did any real investigative journalism to write her column, and didn’t particularly seek to talk to the characters she wrote about. Basically, she only described the experience of her friends and acquaintances from the secular circle. In 2020, such a superficial relationship expert would hardly be in high demand and certainly would not be published in a well-known publication.
Hypocrisy and condemnation of other people’s views on life
For a sex expert writing her own column on the subject, Carrie was often unnecessarily conservative and bigoted. Some modern fans of the show were shocked when Carrie denounced Samantha for having an intimate relationship with her young boyfriend. All this seems even more strange and incomprehensible, given that it was Samantha who was always there and supported Carrie even during the complete crisis in her relationship with Mr. Big.
Attentive viewers also noticed that Carrie often criticized many women for their frivolous behavior in relationships with men. Such an approach seems old-fashioned and sanctimonious, especially for a person who, by virtue of his profession, must constantly master new trends in relationships and be more flexible in his views.