Quietly, The CW has been churning out a few under the radar hits that won’t have Emmy voters going crazy, but provide audiences with solid entertainment.
If you’ve read any of my previous reviews, you know I’m a huge fan of The Vampire Diaries, Arrow, and Nikita. Add The Carrie Diaries to the list.
Best known as the prequel to HBO’s Sex and the City, TCD focuses on high school Carrie and her journey towards losing her virginity to the city of her dreams and gaining steam as an aspiring writer. Yes, I’m aware I just wrote that sentence.
Set in 1984 in Castlebury, CT, Carrie starts her junior year just three months after losing her mother. Her sister Dorrit has taken the passing the hardest though. She’s turned rebellious, and become one with the “emo look,” the dark clothing and eyeliner to make herself seem edgy.
Carrie is, just as in SITC, one of a quartet of friends – Maggie, Mouse and Walt – each resembling in their own way shades of Carrie’s friends from the future. Maggie is the promiscuous one, takes life one day at a time and is driven by her sexual prowess. She’s dating Walt, but he’s not as sexually active so Maggie fulfills her needs elsewhere. Why? Well, Walt’s gay, he just doesn’t know it yet. Mouse is the classic overachiever, never settling for anything less than perfect, a la Charlotte.
The Pilot covers Carrie’s first journey to Manhattan. Her father gets her an internship at his friend’s law firm because he feels the distraction will help take her mind off the death of her mother. She runs into Larissa, an editor with Interview Magazine, who falls in love with her style and “recruits” her to become part of her posse as the finest young individuals in the greater New York area. Larissa has no idea that Carrie is still in high school, but finds her innocence to be quite the endearing quality.
But what would a high school tale of females be without gossip of their male counterparts? Enter Sebastian Kydd, the new kid who was kicked out of his last school, so he has the “bad boy” image at his disposal. He’s Carrie’s crush, after spending much of the summer at the local swimming pool together. When Carrie ditches the school dance for a night with Larissa in NYC, Sebastian finds comfort with Donna LaDonna, the high school bitch that everyone hates.
TCD has become my new guilty pleasure. If not for the holes it plugs and links to SITC, then definitely for the groovy 80s music. I was a fan of SITC and TCD carries on the tradition quite nicely. It’s appropriately toned down – nowhere near as risqué as its HBO counterpart – and fits well with The CW’s brand.