Before the Romance, Love, and the City

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The Carrie Diaries is officially a prequel of The Sex and the City, but it works a lot better as a TV show if you can forget that. And a book series written by Candace Bushnell is now a TV series produced by the CW network. Honestly, I have never read the book or watched Sex and the City series with Sarah Jessica Parker as the lead role.

I have a confession to make. My guilty pleasure has always been CW programming – you know TV shows whose broadcasts are intended for ‘teen viewing audiences’. I have watched every single episode of ANTM, Gossip Girl, Emily Owens, M.D., Arrow, and The Vampire Diaries. Yes, those shows.

The CW’s new dramedy follows the 16-year-old Carrie Bradshaw (Anna Sophia Robb) version of Sarah Jessica Parker’s character, in 1984 as she navigates high school and falls in love, both with the cutest boy at her school and with Manhattan. Carrie has a rebellious younger sister called Dorritt (Stefania Owen), a bland father (Matt Letscher) doing his best as a single dad of two daughters, a clique of great friends, and the prospect of first love when hunky Sebastian Kydd (Austin Butler) arrives in town. Carrie’s friends, too, aren’t just Samantha-Charlotte-Miranda stand-ins. Smart girl Mouse (Ellen Wong), adventurous Maggie (Katie Findlay) and her boyfriend, Walt (Brendan Dooling), have their own personalities and their own problems.

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Through its first three episodes, “The Carrie Diaries” works quite well as a coming-of-age story, thanks in no small part to Robb’s winning performance and a pretty solid cast of young actors around her. The show also gets its period details mostly right. The clothes, the cars and the music cues all pass the ’80s test. I spotted a Rubik’s Cube and Joy Division poster less than 60 seconds into the episode, and the whole thing comes doused in ‘80s pop songs. I have no childhood memories of the ‘80s, because yes I’m a ‘90s baby but I knew what the hype is during the ‘80s…so I found pleasure in seeing its vibrant fashions on-screen, and remembering a time before the internet and mobile phones created social distance by, ironically, connecting us. Check out these looks from the show!

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“The Carrie Diaries” will probably get a good-sized tune-in from people wondering what a young Carrie Bradshaw looks like. If they can get past the SATC connection, they might see a show worth watching on its own merits. This show, however, isn’t aimed at first-generation SATC fans. It’s squarely in the CW’s teen and young-adult wheelhouse with its stories of young love and the perils of growing up.

Having only limited knowledge about this SATC thingy, at first, I thought I wouldn’t love this new series. But, but, but!!!! Being excited for the premiere, though at first I’m in doubt whether I’ll love this series or what, I downloaded the pilot episode and watched it. Verdict: I love it!!! I have loved The Carrie Diaries from the beginning, and this season finale really outdid itself. Even though Carrie and Sebastian broke up and got back together about a million times in one episode, it was amazing overall. Here’s a short glimpse for the Season 1 premiere:
The pilot episode is very exciting, fantastic and a perfect launcher to this series. It makes me a little bit clingy for the next episodes. I think I will love the story and I love the 80’s effect of the show, the fashion, the characters, the oooh so lovely curls of Carrie, the wardrobe of Carrie’s mother, and of course, the city! The series doesn’t only evolve on the city, it also shows interest on Carrie’s teenage years where she’s on high school and asking questions about love, friendship, and family.

The season 1 dealt with so many things: new love, old love, friendship, fashion, race issues, secret love and homosexuality. So many problems were both solved and created in such a short space of time. Instead, a reasonable amount of time was given to each issue, and the slightly neglected ones left room for development in a second season. Very sensitive subjects were dealt with in such a way that it was both funny and serious. I’ve always loved Maggie’s sarcastic and witty take on things and Kate Findlay was at her peak of hilarity at the start. Even though the season 1 was almost overflowing with plotlines, it did succeed. I got the feeling that there were so many great moments to put in. Good news is the show gets renewed; season 2 will be premiere this October 25, 2013 as I would love to see what happens next. One thing makes the season 2 more exciting is the introduction of Carrie’s future BFF Samantha Jones, played by Lindsey Goth will be added in the cast. So mark your calendar dearies!

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All in all, I know I will be glued to this show. I’m sure many viewers will get hooked on this new series. The formula’s just right.  I’m sure you’ll enjoy it too. For those who loved GG and are still in love with it, for those who are a fan of SATC, this is must watched! Here’s a short teaser for the Season 2 premiere. :)

*DISCLAIMER: Do not own the pics it belongs to respective owners.*

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