Did the ‘Sex and the City’ Finale Focus Too Much on What Fans Wanted to See?

Sex and the City was one of the most iconic TV series ever to grace premium cable channels. During its six-season run, fans fell in love with Carrie Bradshaw, Miranda Hobbs, Samantha Jones, Charlotte York, and everything they stood for. By the end of the series, however, the four independent women all, predictably, ended up in serious relationships, much to the chagrin of viewers who signed on to watch four independent ladies make their way in the big city. Did the show focus too heavily on the romance that some fans wanted to see? Darren Star, the producer of the series, seems to think so.

Darren Star was not thrilled with how the series ended

Star has spoken openly about Sex and the City and the way the series shaped the television world. In the years since the show ended, Star has discussed everything from casting decisions to the show’s storylines in a series of interviews. In one particularly honest and open discussion, he even admitted that he hated the ending of the series. According to People, Star stated, “ I think the show ultimately betrayed what it was about, which was that women don’t ultimately find happiness from marriage.”

Darren Starr and Sarah Jessica Parker at a Golden Globe after party
Darren Star and Sarah Jessica Parker | KMazur/WireImage

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Star isn’t alone in his assessment. Chris Noth has also spoken pretty openly about his distaste for the way the series ended. Noth, who portrayed Mr. Big for six seasons and in both movie adaptations, has said that the overly romantic gestures didn’t jive with his character. Mr. Big was supposed to be suave but emotionally closed off. The big romantic gestures, like flying to Paris to retrieve Carrie, and his second proposal at the end of Sex and the City: The Movie, were incredibly out of character. At the end of the day, Noth is right. It was out of character for Mr. Big, but it most assuredly was what a lot of fans wanted to see.

What was Star’s vision for the Sex and the City finale?

While Star stopped short of telling fans what he would have liked to see from the series finale, one can assume it would have been free of Noth’s iconic character, Mr. Big. Perhaps Star would have never dragged Carrie to Paris to chase Aleksandr Petrovsky, or maybe he would have had her find her own way back to the friendships that truly shaped the series. Either way, it’s safe to say that Star didn’t foresee Mr. Big, or anyone else, swooping in to save the day.

Chris Noth and Sarah Jessica Parker in 'Sex and the City'
Chris Noth a Mr. BIg and Sarah Jessica Parker as Carrie Bradshaw | HBO/Getty Images

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Star, however, admitted that he had to give up control of his characters. He handed over the reins and the writers created their own vision. He is not the first producer or showrunner who was left underwhelmed by what other writers did with the characters they nurtured. Amy Sherman-Palladino, the famed showrunner of Gilmore Girls, has been open about her disdain for the final season of Gilmore Girls. She even admitted she never bothered to watch it, and, instead, relied on other people to tell her what transpired in the final episodes of the series that she created.

What was so wrong with the Sex and the City finale?

For many fans, the show’s finale was everything they could have hoped for. The two-part episode appeared to tie up all of the loose ends and wrapped the show on a series of high notes. The finale found Miranda moving to Brooklyn to give Brady the space he needed to thrive. Samantha found her Prince Charming in Smith Jared, and Charlotte and Harry were approved to adopt, fulfilling Charlotte’s lifelong dream of becoming a mother. Most importantly, the finale left fans with the sense that Mr. Big and Carrie were finally going to make their relationship work.

Promotional material for 'Sex and the City'
Kristin Davis, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall and Cynthia Nixon star in ‘Sex and the City’ | HBO/Newsmakers

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To the more romantically-inclined viewers, the series ended with each of the characters ultimately getting exactly what they always wanted. For the more cynical viewers, the finale stripped each of the ladies of their independence and ensured they relied on men to find their happy endings. Sex and the City, as Star suggests, was never supposed to be about men swooping in to save the day. It was about the ladies living their independent lives and relying on their friends to help them through the bumpier moments.