I was skeptical when I heard the CW was going to air a “Sex and the City” prequel, “The Carrie Diaries,” showing us a teenaged Carrie Bradshaw as she navigated high school circa 1984.
Oh, I loved the concept. But I had the same thoughts everyone else did:
- The original show was a half hour. Does this one really need to be twice that length?
- Part of the joy of SATC was the simple fact that it was risque. You can’t do that on the CW … with a teenage cast.
- Could anything possibly live up to the hype of SATC?
Well, I’m three episodes in, and the verdict is established: I’m majorly digging “The Carrie Diaries.” Here’s why:
- Carrie. AnnaSophia Robb is great. She’s super believable. The CW is great for casting over-actors, but I find Robb completely relateable and appropriate as The Future NYC Sex Expert.
- Obviously, this is a teen who grows to have something of a relationship with New York City. Still, it’s refreshing to see a teen girl portrayed on television who, yes, is boy crazy, but will ditch a boy for a night out on her town.
- The Easter eggs throughout “The Carrie Diaries” are really fun. At the end of the first episode, after she finds her mother’s unused diaries, she sets up a writing station — it’s bare bones desk up against a window in her bedroom. The set up is identical to her writing station in her future NYC apartment, and it elicited a little squeal from me. In this week’s episode her “I don’t understand why you like Carrie, but you’re cool, so I hope you stick around” friend Larissa tells Carrie she foresees her on the side of a bus one day (granted, probably not with a graffiti penis painted next to her mouth).
- Her little sister, while kind of annoying, is a little sister. She’s 14. She’s moody. She doesn’t appear to be on the track to go all Jenny Humphrey on us any time soon. (Though her name is Dorrit, which is horrible. I had to look it up to assure it was a real name. Apparently, it’s a nickname form of “Dorothy,” which sounds much better with “Carrie.”)
- Her dad. He’s actually a player in Carrie’s life. So many shows and movies with a teenage protagonist might as well be orphans. But Mr. Bradshaw disciplines his daughters. He’s in their lives. He has a relationship with them. It’s almost refreshing.
Also, I’m wracking my brain to wonder what we know about Carrie from SATC. There was shockingly little told about her past. We never meet any of her family and, I think, learn only that her dad left her and her mom when Carrie was young. Obviously, “The Carrie Diaries” Carrie being raised by her recently widowed father is a deviation.
I seem to recall a story Carrie tells about losing her virginity on a pool table. Will we see that? She also tells that she had an abortion when she was 19, and she never told the father. If “The Carrie Diaries” stays on air that long, is this a topic the CW would possibly touch?
To anyone who’s watched the new show, what do you think? Am I alone in my fandom?
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