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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Carrie Diaries- Season 1, episode 1

Pilot- We went into this show as huge Sex and the City fans who really didn't see why this new show was a good idea in the first place. The original show's writers didn't see a reason to look back, we know who Carrie ends up with, and Carrie is by far NOT the best character on that show. Carrie is kind of a selfish, vapid chain smoker who always talks about herself after her friends are telling her their problems. However, Sarah Jessica Parker is adorable, so we loved Carrie anyway.

Miranda was the dry wit, Samantha was the enthusiastic lover of life and men, and Charlotte was the girly girl. They were all better than Carrie. Also, the heart of the show was their friendship. Without Carrie's real soulmates, what's the point? Plus, this new show couldn't have all the humor and sex jokes. It's the CW. After watching the pilot, it's clear that the show isn't going to even try (which is probably a good thing). Maybe the show is going by the book, but it sure as heck isn't going by the show at all.

Differences include Carrie's personality and the fact that she has a Dad. Wasn't there a whole episode where Carrie talked about how she never knew her father? We guess TVs got scared of a show with a single mom and did the sitcom-y thing of killing her. What does TV have against moms? This isn't a spoiler because it's the first thing that's addressed on the show.

If you're going to make a high school show set in the 80s, just invent a character. Don't use one that's been well worn. We guess the CW just wanted to cash in on the large fan base Miss Carrie Bradshaw already has. We think it's offensive to trick us into thinking we're getting Carrie Bradshaw and give us a different person with the same name. Now the question is: Can we enjoy this show if we can detach it from the other one and just take this Carrie on her own terms?

The answer? Not yet. It's just not good or remotely original enough. We wouldn't call it engrossing. There are some sweet moments, but this is like a watered-down Sex and the City (the movie, not the series) mashed up with a watered-down John Hughes movie. We loved some of the clothes, especially the dress Carrie wears for her night out. The 80s should prove a good backdrop for a coming-of-age saga.

You want to know what's the same as the show? The voiceover and the glamorizing of New York City. NYC is still Carrie's main boyfriend and the thing that takes her innocence and ushers her into new stages in life. Heck, we knew this show wouldn't have Carrie lose her physical virginity with a few thrusts, a joint, and a pool table like SJP's Carrie. Also, the love of fashion is there. Carrie even says that she thinks a store full of new clothes can "change who you are." Oh honey. No. No no no. Another thing we hated was an immature, totally FAKE character who was never called to the carpet for acting completely crazy.

A positive difference is that this version of Carrie Bradshaw is smarter, deeper, and more likable. There was a weird thing toward the end. We guess the message in this episode is that if you're a guy and you say no to your girlfriend's proposition, you're gay. Nice, CW. There are plenty of reasons to wait if you're a guy. Having sex in high school is usually a bad idea (we know we've said that before; it's just so true), a guy may care about the girl and want to wait until they are more mature, a guy might be religious, or a guy might not be that into the girl.

Carrie's boss is pretty funny and we like her little sister so far. The best we can say about this show is "it was cute." We'll check back later to see if the show has found its voice or develops storylines that could keep us coming back. But for now, we're annoying to see the Carrie Bradshaw name used to lure us toward this light, rated-PG, teen creamsicle. Samantha Jones would be scandalized. Even if we weren't Sex and the City fans, we would find this average and forgettable. But watchable.

Episode grade: C

Photo by AnnaSophia_Robb_(20050209).jpg: Sappymoosetree Sarah_Jessica_Parker_Shankbone_2009_Tribeca.jpg: David Shankbone derivative work: Amzer [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons


  1. I actually liked this show, but I have never watched Sex & the City, so I had no preconceived ideas of how Carrie should be.

  2. I also really liked this show and have not watched Sex and the City and I'm also a guy. It's nice having shows like these as I watch too many dark stuff. The teen/family/young people line-up is growing :D Parenthood, Switched at Birth, Awkward, Girls, Bunheads, and now The Carrie Diaries

    1. You guys should totally watch Sex and the City. The first season isn't great, but it's short and important. I think it gets better as it goes along.

      This show was just...nice. Vanilla. I guess we might have been too hard on it, but then again, we just might not be the audience for it. We're gonna keep watching, don't get me wrong. We'll give it five episodes like we do just about everything else.

    2. And I liked this Carrie as a character better. She's a better person.

      But what was cool about the romance on Sex and the City was how realistic and relatable it was and how the girls discussed actual problems that people are going through. Plus, it was funny. This show isn't funny and it's more teen fun than actual dissection of high school love politics. So far anyway.

      Maybe the expectations in general were too high.