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“Sex And The City”, And Personal Bitterness….

Today, after years of being a fan of the series, I finally received a copy of Candace Bushnell’s “Sex And The City” in the mail. I’m not certain why I never read the book until now. I’ve read all of the author’s other books, and while her fiction is far from brilliant, it’s entertaining and provides some unique psychological perspectives that—at least based upon my experience—are typically right on the money.

And, I had a realisation as to why the movies that followed the franchise weren’t very successful. It wasn’t simply that the characters were too old, people had grown tired of the storylines, and the films weren’t easy to relate to (and, yes, all of those things are true.). It’s that the book already had an ending and it was written that way on purpose.

In the end, Carrie and Mr. Big do not get together. After years of her chasing after an emotionally unavailable guy who would make a committment—if he loved her more, if he were less self-centred, if he wanted to be that kind of guy—-they don’t end up together. He marries someone else.

I think there is a very hard, very real lesson in that, one that any girl who has given portions of her life to an unavailable partner can easily relate to. But, in the real world, it’s how the story ends, 99% of the time. The guy doesn’t leave his wife, he doesn’t quit his job, he doesn’t get over his committment issues or tell his disapproving family to shove it. He simply stays in the relationship until one or both parties see the need to move on.

“Sex And The City” was written to end with Mr. Big marrying someone else, and with Carrie being shown as a somewhat naive and foolish girl for waiting around for a guy who exemplifies all the main ideas espoused in such classics as “He’s Just Not That Into You”.

The fact that Hollywood has such problems with this reality that they needed to write a happily-ever-after sequel or two, terribly contrived, is why we have such problems in our society today. It’s why we have women with self-esteem issues waiting around for commitment-phobic guys who aren’t treating them with the respect they deserve (and likely, vice versa.)

For a franchise that’s all about female empowerment and modern sexuality, you think they’d consider that it’s a duty owed to the younger generation, to get rid of the fairy tales and nonsense. If you want to spend years trying to tell it like it is, don’t sell out just to make sure everyone lives happily ever after. Because somewhere, there’s a 20-year-old girl waiting for that executive to leave his wife and pay her the attention she deserves outside of the bedroom, and somebody, at some point, needs to tell her to grow up, because it’s not going to happen.

I’m just saying. “Sex And The City”, you sold women out to sell more movies. And it serves you right, because now all of America knows your movies suck.

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