Sex and the City Re-watch Recap: Sex and the City (The first episode)

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And so it begins, just as you remember it with the sexual know it all strutting down the street in questionable attire. This won’t be the last time.

The episode begins with a parable. It’s supposed to hook the women who have been burned by sleazy men, but also snag some straight men with some tantalizing silhouetted side boob.  A pretty English lady gets dumped and, alas, we have yet another jaded woman in the world. This is how we are introduced to Carrie, from behind with a cigarette.

By the time Carrie breaks the fourth wall and asks, “How the hell did we get into this mess”, I find myself wondering that too with all the asides to the audience. It’s like Saved by the Bell with sex. (Maybe there’s something to that…)

Then, after a few interview-esque montages, we see a couple more of our ladies give their own characterizations, something my English teachers advised against doing. Then we are finally introduced to catty Samantha, after drag queens escort a cake of course. Here the episode’s premise is discussed: women having sex like men. Their initial banter sets the stage for almost every episode that follows.

You will eventually look forward to the ladies’ dirty mealtime chats.

After this the gay hook is cast with the appearance of bitchy but fabulous Stanford Blatch. He points out an old flame of Carrie’s (big mistake) whom she pursues in her attempt at man-like sex. Unsurprisingly, Stanford disapproves like a sassy gay friend should.
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So it’s off to the races, or the bedroom anyway where we see Carrie try out the casual sex line “maybe we can do it again sometime?”

Then our confident leading lady heads out to the sidewalk where her purse is spilled and some random guy (one who plays a Big role) bends down to help her get her pens and hair tools, and condoms, condoms, condoms!

But there’s no time to dwell because this is a pilot and we need more people shoved down our throats.

Namely Skipper.

The “nice guy” is basically a waste of time in the first season. He really doesn’t fit. He’s too nice. So Carrie does something shitty and sets him up with her best friend.

We see this date in action. You’d think from this exchange Miranda is a surgeon (she’s worse, a lawyer) from the way she rips Skippy a new orifice. That’s when Carrie does something shittier than before, she chats up her hook up instead of saving Skipper, and it’s clearly Miranda who needs saving.

After having her experiment backfire, Carrie watches Samantha perform oral sex on a cigar in front of the man who cleaned up Carrie’s condoms. We also see Charlotte’s plan to court a man slut backfire, too. Silly girl.

Samantha’s cigar seduction also backfires. Wow these women are winners. The only one who wins is the one who loses her will, Miranda, when the “nice” guy pounces on her. That’s until we see Samantha hook up with Charlotte’s former date. She says she’s fine with just a hookup, but that momentary look of longing makes you wonder is that’s what really makes her happy.

And finally, just when Carrie is about to do the unspeakable, whore herself out for a ride, she gets a ride from a guy who thinks she’s a hooker when she describes her career: sexual anthropologist. Then the Big mystery guy says the magic word: love.

But has he ever been in love? He says, ambiguously, “Absofuckinlutely.”

And that, friends, is the busiest 26-minute pilot ever. It’s here that I must warn you that Sex and the City suffers from First Seasonitis, an inflammatory condition caused by a new show trying to do too many things at once to fight for airtime.

While the series eventually settles down into a romantic sit-com role, some of its best moments occur in its more serious and dramatic scripts. This season is all about shock value. It’s not a bad tactic while it lasts, but it does begin to wear thin. Returning to this season after the high drama of the sixth certainly causes some stylistic whiplash, but it’s all in good fun. No wonder my mom thought this show was porn.

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