I went to see the SATC 2 movie last Friday. It was opening night and cinema thronged with thirtysomething women who have grown up to the antics of Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda. We all fancied that we could identify with one or other of them, and we all wished we had a shoe collection to rival any one of them. I sat through the entire series, glued to the implausible plot lines, ridiculous fashion and the quaint idea that female friendship really does transcend all.
I loved the first movie, when we all got the satisfaction of finally seeing the Big/Carrie storyline reach it's white tulle conclusion, albeit with a few bumps along the way. But movie number two left me cold. The problem, apart from the risible attempt to bring a serious commentary on women's rights in the Middle East into a frothy chick flick, was that married, menopausal mothers just aren't that glam.
When Carrie and co were bed hopping and sharing angst over their latest love affairs, I was hooked. I was on the edge of my seat as I waited to find out what would happen between Smith and Samantha, what was it that Miranda saw in speccy Steve, and could Charlotte sink her waspish ways to wed her semite in shining armour? But do I really want to know how sexy Samantha overcomes hot flushes? Do I care about Charlotte's woes over motherhood, and could I care less about Carrie's worries about becoming an old married couple or Miranda's work\life balance dilemmas? No.
Watching the girls whizz around the streets of Manhattan in their skyscraper heels was delicious escapism. I would revel in the fashion, the sophisticated bars and luscious young men. The cocktails, the brunches, the to die for apartments and glamourous careers. It was just the contrast I needed to making ends meet in rainy London, with a love life whose highlight was a takeaway on the sofa on a Friday night.
But the latest movie shows me that no matter how expensive the heels, sophisticated the decor or elegant the friends, as soon as age, marriage and motherhood catches us, we are all the same under the skin whether it's smooth and burnished with Fake Bake or chapped by washing up liquid. I don't want to know. I want the girls to remain perfectly glamourous. I don't want to see those starry women grow wrinkled, the fabulous dresses making them look like so much mutton dressed as lamb, the sex scenes becoming that little bit uncomfortable, not because of their kinkiness, but because of the creaking you can almost hear as those limbs entangle.
So I bid a sad adieu to SATC. It was great while it lasted, but now it's as stomach churning as watching your mum snog a waiter at a wedding.