Seventeen years after Sex and the City left our screens, it’s back with a new 10-part reboot, says Adam White in The Independent – and it’s a triumph. And Just Like That doesn’t feel like “cloying nostalgia-bait” or a “sad rehashing of the past”. It knows its main characters are older, whiter and completely out of step – and it revels in it. Miranda has gone back to school to study human rights law, having realised that merely “wearing a pink pussy hat” doesn’t actually do a lot for women. Carrie is a regular guest on a podcast fronted by a “queer, non-binary Mexican-Irish diva” named Che. A younger, “cool, smart, at-ease-with-life” cast visibly blanch at these out-of-touch oldies. It works. And that, after the ladies’ infamous movie flops, is a “minor miracle”.
There’s just one thing missing, says Carol Midgley in The Times. The original show’s “best character” – Kim Cattrall’s “libidinous, outrageous, man-eating Samantha” – is entirely absent, as the actress refused to take part in the reboot. The writers try to make up for her “funny filth quota” with “lame stuff about masturbation, gender-neutral toilets and teenagers leaving used condoms on bedroom floors”. But it doesn’t quite work. Still, this is meant to be the series “in which the characters grow up a bit”. Sure enough, the first episode ends with a prominent character dying after a workout on a Peloton bike. It’s a “nice, dark twist” that could yet “give this series soul”.
And Just Like That is on Sky Comedy and Now TV. Watch a trailer here.
David Tennant’s Foggy thinking
I don’t think David Tennant has the measure of Phileas Fogg, says Jake Kerridge in The Daily Telegraph. The 50-year-old actor, who plays Jules Verne’s globetrotting hero in the forthcoming BBC dramatisation of Around the World in 80 Days, describes him as “a particularly stuffy Englishman” who “represents everything that’s alarming and peculiar about that old sense of British empire”.
It’s true that Fogg doesn’t despise aspects of the British imperial project as much as his French creator – Verne, as narrator, refers to the British Crown’s “despotic dominion” over India. But he is a member of the Reform Club, which in the Victorian era was a sign that you were committed to radical politics. It even “banned copies of The Daily Telegraph from its premises”. And Fogg is certainly no racist. He ends the novel engaged to Aouda, the Indian woman he rescues from being burnt alive in a suttee ritual. “If the Tennant series focuses on Fogg as a hidebound imperialist lackey instead of trying to capture that spirit of romantic freedom, it will be a sorry thing.”