Sunday, 4 March 2012
Carrie on regardless
If you managed to suffer through the 147 minutes of torture that constituted the last Sex and the City movie, you may well be hoping you’ve seen the back of Carrie Bradshaw – much like the majority of New York’s eligible bachelors.
Despite the fact that it was about as much fun as euthanising kittens with a brick, the film still managed to turn an impressive profit. And that means that studios believe there’s still an audience out there for Carrie’s further exploits. However, to paraphrase the old saying, you can’t teach an old dog to turn new tricks. So what’s the answer? How do you keep things fresh, when six seasons and two movies have made the franchise feel staler than last week’s Kingsmill?
Thankfully, no-one had to wrack their brains for too long, since creator Candace Bushnell had helpfully written a prequel to her original novel in 2010, called The Carrie Diaries. So let’s all do the timewarp and revisit our equine heroine when she was still a foal, and able to suck down a red Marlboro without her mouth creping like Maggie Smith sipping a Lemsip.
Given that the show is being developed by the CW network, home to Gossip Girl 90210 and The Vampire Diaries, it’s safe to assume that no one’s going to take a load of old-man spunk to the face. Likewise, it's doubtful that there’ll be any ginger merkins on display. In fact, the show promises to be as watered down as a virgin Manhattan.
Which makes me wonder what the appeal is going to be, and who’s going to watch it. As portrayed by Sarah Jessica Parker, Carrie was never a particularly likeable heroine – often managing to be obsessive, deceitful and petulant all at once. Throw in a teenage sense of entitlement and this could be more painful than jogging the wrong way up an escalator in a pair of Manolos.
When Sex and the City first appeared in 1998, it was a genuine revelation. Its four main character archetypes might have been lifted wholesale from The Golden Girls, but the refreshingly frank discussion of sex and sexuality was entirely its own creation. Over the years we grew to love Carrie and her gang, so much so that we were even able to forgive her for going out dressed like a hooker trying to pay her way through clown college.
Eye-watering fashions aside, Carrie was an everywoman, made distinct only by her ability to knock out a sharp pun in a peignoir. With Gossip Girl already cornering the market in bitchy teen sexuality and scathing commentary, it's hard to see what will make the adolescent Carrie distinct from any other teenage girl with a gel-bra and a MacBook Air.
With a new group of friends to help her split an egg-white omelette four ways, and whole host of fresh relationship dilemmas to resolve, The Carrie Diaries won't be short of material. And at least we can be thankful that this is one prequel that George Lucas won't involved in - no-one needs to see Jar Jar Binks having a pregnancy scare.
Posted by Gareth at 22:22