They were also, importantly, mostly employed. Arabs are portrayed as angry and punitive, and Samantha, who refuses to dress appropriately, tries to fight for sexual freedom by groping men in restaurants and waving condoms at an angry crowd in a bazaar.
In a time of prosperity, the obsession with expensive shoes was relatable. Carrie and Big are just dull, arguing over marital cliches like whether to have a TV in the bedroom. Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha were remarkable for a decade.
Judging from the Adidas pants and giant parkas of season one, you may conclude that Miranda is trying to silently signal to the audience that she's having a nervous breakdown. But lest you roll your eyes at the pilot's talk of women "having sex like men," remember: This was the pre- Girlslargely pre-Web world, and SATC busted it wide open.
When you see her talking to people through a handset in her bedroom, that's called a landline—and when she listens to a voice mail, it's coming out of an answering machine, which is a device that used a cassette to Party-crashers Samantha and Charlotte find themselves among married people.
The complaints are predictable. And they do, gushing and gasping over the opulence of their outrageously priced, palatial hotel rooms. Carrie is invited to a couple's house in the Hamptons only to be flashed by the husband. They were beautiful, successful, and designer-clad, but women of all stripes and nationalities could identify with their triumphs and struggles.
They spoke like us, laughed like us, dated like us, stuffed up like us, drowned their sorrows like us, and loved their female friends fiercely, like us.
They were dirty and defiant. One thing New York girls understand is the power of a good entrance - and a good exit. And just when you might start to feel the old sympathy for the characters many of us loved, they remind you they now live on a planet far away, where women bedecked in unaffordable clothes cry into cocktails and wonder how anyone who has less money than they do actually copes.
This - the only part of the film with any semblance of rebellion, freethinking, or lack of convention - is not discussed at any other point or dissected by the group, which is a shame. Alas, somehow, in this most recent shift from small screen to big, these women have become a lot less like us and a lot more like painful wealthy white women whose self-involvement has soared from amusing to nauseating.