The final episode. The final garrison, the final stretch, the final curtain, the final countdown. Finally I am here, celebrating in my decaying filth that this really is it. I haven’t cured cancer, made an outstanding sandwich or told any funny jokes, but this is my own personal redemption, proof that when I put my mind to something I actually can see it through, a talent that would have been much more useful the last time I tried to integrate myself into the Muslim community by wearing a novelty fake beard, and clutching a battered copy of ‘Spanish Bombs’ by The Clash.
Let’s kick off then, for the final time.
The Paramount logo looms bigger than I’ve seen before, HBO flashes and for the final time I breathe in the tutu, feel the wetness and let myself sink in and feel that sense of shame that has enveloped me all those times before.
Carrie started off meeting Alexander and his ex-wife. Only it was just her and the ex when Alexander never bothered to turn up, bizarrely ringing his ex-wife instead of Carrie to cancel. What a weird relationship they have those two, equal parts joyless and utterly ridiculous. The two women bonded over Alexander’s shortcomings, including his inability to put other people first. After the meet, Alexander informed her that his ex had described Carrie as ‘beautiful, smart and chic’. Clearly a lie, as there aren’t enough mentions of the word ‘cunt’ in that to be an accurate portrayal of Carrie.
Charlotte was busy in New York planning the adoption of her child. Gay Anthony was milling about, his leather jacket swishing one final time. Charlotte actually said the most offensive thing I’ve heard in this show when she told Harry that the problems they were experiencing in finding a child to adopt was okay because “we’re jews, and we’ve been through worse than this.” How incredibly insensitive to all Jewish people the world over. Woody Allen films aren’t *that* bad.
Smith and Samantha were in dire straits. Samantha had lost her sex drive, and not even them both dying their hair blonde could rescue matters. Smith was going to Canada to star in a film, and so Samantha told him that she wouldn’t mind if he had sex while he was there because she didn’t feel up for it. How romantic.
Carrie tried to make herself feel better by scoffing cream cakes and staring at a bulldog. Her mood was not improved when a bolshy little girl poked her tongue out at Carrie, which led to a calamitous series of events ending with Carrie getting dog shit on her Essex girl white stilettos. A warm reminder of my teenage years, girls in big white shoes and complete shit.
Steve and Miranda were having problems with Steve’s somewhat erratic mother. All these problems, can you guess that it was the final episode, what with all the initial misery? Steve’s mum seemed disoriented, referring to baby Brady as Stevie. After a trip to the doctors it was revealed that she had experienced a mild stroke, which had worsened because, as she lived alone nobody was able to pick up on it. A harrowing scene, and a reminder of the horrors some people are unlucky enough to face. Steve asked Miranda if his mum could move in, a proposition Miranda graciously accepted.
Carrie’s mood picked up when she saw that her book had been translated into French, and was subsequently up for sale in French bookshops. As if her disgusting daubings weren’t illegible enough. The staff at the bookshop were delighted to see Carrie, gesticulating wildly, and inviting her to a party they were throwing in her honour. Carrie was amazed and pleased, and promptly asked Alexander if he would go with her. Guess what the answer was? He couldn’t, as he was presenting his exhibition for the first time on the same day as the party.
It turned out that he was wracked with fear that his art would be awful, and that he would be seen as “just an old man with silly light machines”. He begged Carrie to go with him to the installation, forsaking her own party so that he would feel better. After much disagreement, she accepted, rudely not ringing the party and instead ignoring them. As soon as they got to the gallery, Alexander ignored her, and Carrie had an epiphany when she found her necklace buried deep inside her handbag. I’m trying to make this sound exciting, but it’s not really working is it? Let’s try to add some drama to the proceedings by trying to make it into a John Grisham thriller…
Carrie gasped when she saw the necklace. She knew instantly that what she wasn’t inside the gallery, and that she should go to her party. Wheels crunched on the Parisian streets, as Carrie’s heels click-clacked. A dash across the streets resulted in her and Big missing each other by a mere moment. The tension mounted as she launched herself into the party, only it was finished. Red wine smudges on her once pristine book. And back in New York, Steve’s mentally fragile mother was eating pizza out of a rubbish bin…
Arguments with Alexander ensued. He accidently slapped her, clipping her cheek with the side of his hand. More tension. Despondent, Carrie broke up with him. One more ending to join a list of broken relationships. Carrie was hurt, tearful. She stumbled down into the hotel lobby, only to spot Big, his big brown eyes peering straight into her face. Smiles, tears, tribulations. Fear, love, hate. Bodies moving. Hearts breaking, only to get stronger. Big rushed up the stairs like a cat on crack after Carrie told him about the slap. His face was full of protection, at least until Carrie tripped him over and they collapsed onto the rug in a fit of giggles. Laughter, the finest tonic.
They kissed. A passionate embrace in a determined ‘fuck you’ to the world that had always threatened to keep them apart. But no longer. A beautiful ending to a troubled journey? Let’s see…
On one hand it’s lovely to see that, at least on the outside they are all happy. Carrie has Big, the man she had always wanted. Charlotte and Harry have a new bubbly Chinese baby, the dream child they always wanted. Samantha and Smith have each other, and the new found ability to express their love to one another. And Miranda, forever the cynic has a child, Steve, and Steve’s mum, coupled with the skill and the nous to fully care about someone who isn’t immediately affiliated with her. All well and good, but is it what they all really wanted?
This show started out as a deeply feminist programme, a propaganda tool for millions of unwashed women in dungarees to rise out of their filthy kitchens and pretend that they had something to say for themselves, and don’t get me wrong I’m okay with that. I can relate with the need for a rallying cry for help, all the single ladies saying “yes, I’ve found my voice”, but it didn’t really work out like that did it?
The climax of this show is so different to how it started, which would suggest a positive step, but I’d respectfully disagree. Instead of the burning pride the girls all had in different ways at the start, it has been replaced with more woes and more difficulties for them to deal with. Maybe that’s what life is, one more rubbish step after another, but I’d much rather worry about what mojito I wanted to drink rather than worrying about all the people in my life letting me down.
Miranda has settled for a life in the suburbs, away from her friends, with her husband who she seems to have nothing in common with, a ginger baby, and his ill mother. Charlotte’s life has turned from a burgeoning career within the New York art world, to stay at home mum to an adopted baby with a man whom she had to bend over backwards to get to fully love her. Samantha, forever the spark has turned into a meek spark, dimmed by cancer, and age. And Carrie, forever the idealist has settled for a man she had demonised for years as the bane of her life. She needed the cheater, to stop her from cheating herself. Is that not the most tragic thought you can think of?
Is this progress or regress? The years of feminine pride, of sisters doing it for themselves, four girls against the world descended into a world where all they needed was a man in their lives. Perhaps it’s all true, and it’s certainly not the worst thought in the world, to consider the idea that all you need to make you happy is someone who loves you, and I’d certainly be happy for that to be the case, but I just can’t consider this a happy ending. You know who I blame for all this? FUCKING Stanford.