“And Just Like That” Miranda Casts Herself in a Gay Rom-Com

There’s a moment in this week’s And Just Like That where Carrie is standing in the hallway of her brownstone, and her new downstairs neighbor is standing in her own doorway, and the mirror on the wall is framing them both — Carrie Bradshaw and her 25-year-old shadow self, Ghost Of Hangovers Past, thin trendy curly-haired successful artists, one with her whole life ahead of her, and one with a dead husband and a mechanical hip. “Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered” wants to wrap itself around this moment and ask a bunch of questions about growing up and about growing old. Steve even says it out loud to Miranda as she’s blowing his entire world to smithereens: Miranda, we are old. She disagrees, but mostly because she is on a manic queer sex high. Carrie feels old because her new neighbor is loud and never sleeps, and it’s driving Carrie nuts. Charlotte feels old because she learns about finsta and also realizes she’s using her mom’s sexually repressed parenting strategies.

I said it last week and it’s true this week too: The thing about aging is you never really realize that you are aging; you just suddenly, for whatever reason, one day realize that you have aged. Nearly everyone is shocked by the realization, and nearly everyone has at least one small identity crisis about it, but I have to say — as a middle age lesbian who takes blood pressure medication — most people don’t GET ON A PLANE TO CLEVELAND TO CHASE DOWN SARA RAMIREZ ABOUT IT.

Miranda and Che have an intense conversation

Miranda, you need to slow down. You’re still a baby gay. You’ve never even watched a single episode of any Degrassi.

So Che’s in the park doing a Pride rally, yelling about how if you’re out and proud, you’re part of the revolution, the evolution, the constitution, the absolution, various other rhymes, etc. Miranda’s in the crowd, smiling up at the stage like one of those hyenas from The Lion King, all teeth and glowing eyes the size of the moon, a look that she wears every single time she’s near Che in this episode, like maybe she’s in love with them or maybe she’s going to literally cannibalize them, who’s to say! Che thanks the allies in the crowd for showing up and not hiding. Miranda peeps over and sees Brady and his girlfriend there, supporting their LGBTQ+ friends. Somehow, her eyes get EVEN BIGGER and she dips down and starts skulking away. Che clocks it and stumbles over their speech, circling back to “uh stop hiding” but Miranda runs off down the block.

She returns after the rally is over and offers Che an iced coffee, which she correctly heard is the gayest beverage, and an apology. Things go sideways real fast. Che’s like, “Your son doesn’t know about me? Wait, doesn’t know you’re in an open marriage? Wait, you are in an open marriage, right? Wait, are you… fucking kidding me right now?” It is very important to me that you understand that during this conversation, with Che getting angrier and angrier, Miranda does not stop showing her whole entire teeth! She has completely lost the plot! Her face is just locked into an unhinged grin! She tries to explain that this is all new, that it’s flipped her whole body and brain inside out, that her marriage was over anyway, that she didn’t want to ruin what she and Che have with, like, “facts” and “reality.” Che says they do not lie, they do not cheat, and most of all THEY DO NOT HOMEWRECK. They storm off and chuck Miranda’s iced coffee in the trash.

Miranda, Charlotte, and Carrie sit at a table together eating lobster

Okay I’m just going to say it: It’s very weird for Miranda to need to be shot with a tranquilizer dart more than me.

Miranda then takes a turn about town reiterating her claim that her marriage has already been done for like a decade! It’s over! Ovvveeerrr! She knows it’s over, her friends know it’s over, the whole thing is just a misery that occasionally includes nice desserts! Charlotte looks at Carrie like, “I handled the alcoholism thing, this one’s all you.” And so while Miranda just goes on and on and on about how the only thing that matters to her is being with Che, Carrie squeaks out, “Have you, um, asked Che if they want to be with you?” And so that is exactly what Miranda does. She gets in an Uber and goes to Che’s PLACE OF BUSINESS and asks if she is crazy. Che really has to clarify what, exactly, Miranda means, because: is she acting like a bonkers person right now? Yes, she is. What Miranda is actually asking, though, is if Che has feelings for her too. Che says yes, that they are in love with her. Which shocked both me and Miranda, if you want to know the truth. Che wanting to have sex with Miranda? Yeah, absolutely! Che falling in love with Miranda? I’m gonna need a little more proof than what I have seen on my screen to believe that one.

Not Miranda, though! She nearly combusts right there on the sidewalk and is already printing out divorce papers from the Staples mobile app to pick up on her way home. Che puts a hand on her and tries to calm her down so she can hear this important piece of information: Che can never give Miranda something traditional. Miranda, a top New York lawyer, does not clarify what in the vague hell that means. She’s still grinning to beat the band and spinning so many gay fairytales in her head she’s dizzy with them. Che heads off to Cleveland for a gig and Miranda heads off to Brooklyn to punch Steve’s heart out of his chest.

Miranda and Steve sit on the couch

No, Miranda, I don’t know what the cisheteropotato is.

‘Cause guess who didn’t know their marriage was over? Her husband.

Miranda: Put in your hearing aids, you bumbling fool. And turn off the Yankees game. And hold my hands.
Steve: Um. Okay. Are you dying or something? Are we getting a divorce? Why do you look like a wolf right now?
Miranda: No to dying, I’M AS ALIVE AS THE WIND! AS ALIVE AS LIGHTING! I AM ETERNAL! But yes to the divorce.
Steve: Oh Jesus here we go again.
Miranda: Don’t act so shocked. Are your hearing aids in? STEVE! ARE YOUR HEARING AIDS IN? Don’t you want more than this shit? More than pies and brownies and Netflix and laundry and dishes and going to work and coming home and our idiot son and working and paying bills and going to bed at a decent hour and this… just… couch.
Steve: No. This is exactly what I want. This is life. I’m happier than I ever have been, mostly because you’ve stopped telling me I’m not good enough for you every ten minutes, but I’ve rallied for us too many times to do it again. I’m old. I’m tired. So. If you’re not happy, sure. Let’s get divorced.
Miranda: Okay good because I’ve been fucking Carrie’s boss, Che Diaz, and they won’t be with me if I’m with you. Do you want me to turn the game back on? I’m going to Cleveland.

Listen, I’m no fan of men — but that was hard to watch! I wanted to see Miranda come out! I wanted to see her have the gay sex of her dreams! I wanted to watch Sara Ramirez swagger around in a suit! I am pleased with all of that! But come on, Miranda, you were married for 15 years to a pretty decent guy, even if he bored you. He’s been a good partner and a good dad, even if you didn’t want to have sex with him. Surely there was a better, more compassionate way to end things.

Well and Miranda is out the door and off to the airport. She calls Carrie and yells, “I’M IN A ROM-COM!” And Carrie’s like, “Safe travels, whoever you are!”

Does anyone want to bet five American dollars that Miranda is not going to like what she finds in Cleveland and that she’s going to wish she had clarified, even just slightly, what “something traditional” means? ‘Cause Miranda keeps saying “be together” “be with Che” “me and Che together” and I’m not sure that means the same thing to Che as it means to her. It is seriously causing me physical distress that Miranda does not have access to Autostraddle’s You Need Help archives! The energy she is giving in this scene — and, in fact, in this entire episode — is that little pig named Wallace from the Geico commercials who hangs out of the car window holding a pinwheel and screaming.

Lily and Charlotte sit at a lunch table together

Got the Wordle in two today, bitch!

In less dramatic aging news, Lily walks in on Charlotte giving Harry a pre-breakfast BJ, and instead of explaining it, she slams the door in her child’s face and then tells her she was checking her dad’s penis for cancer. Lily shrieks, “WHAT?!” and Charlotte realizes she actually made the situation much worse. So she invites Lily out to lunch to have a nice, open, grown-up chat about sex in the city, only to find that Lily has a finsta where she posts photos of herself in yoga clothes in suggestive poses. Charlotte completely Charlottes it, getting louder and gesticulating more wildly, until Lily ultimately walks out of the restaurant as Charlotte yells, “WE DON’T WALK OUT ON EACH OTHER!!!”

Lily goes to Aunt Carrie’s house, to try on some more of her clothes and help her inventory them, before Carrie sends them off to storage. Carrie tries to talk down Charlotte on the phone, but Charlotte is at a Charlotte-11 (a normal person’s 25) and she cannot be consoled. Carrie invites Lily to sleep over, and she gladly takes her up on that. This is a very sweet dynamic and I’m glad we’re getting to see it.

When Lily comes home, Charlotte apologizes. Lily says the finsta is just for like eight of her friends anyway, and that does make Charlotte feel better. Charlotte asks Lily if she has any questions about what was going on with her and Harry in the bathroom the other day, and Lily only has one: Did Charlotte find any cancer on her dad’s penis?

OH LILY.

Carrie stands in front of a mirror that her neighbor is also looking into

I *am* still the fairest one of all! I knew it!

Carrie’s feud with her downstairs neighbor sends her into one of her little spirals. First she’s mad about the noise. Then she’s mad at herself for being mad about the noise. Then she’s mad at herself for being mad at herself for being mad about the noise. She doesn’t want to feel old! She wants to feel young and cool like on her original series, with the tutu in the middle of Manhattan! She also wants her neighbor to think she’s cool! That dream is crushed when her neighbor passes her walking around the block in her Daily Cigarette Suit, which consists of sunglasses, multiple head scarves, and a pair of giant rubber gloves. Because of the cigarette smell. Carrie tires to explain that she wouldn’t even need the quiet if it weren’t for the fact that she’s a writer. Of books. She is a BOOK WRITER. Her neighbor is a very popular jewelry designer, though, so.

In the end, Carrie’s neighbor’s does think she’s cool, not because she’s young or likes noise or drinks too much, but because she clocks the boyfriend as a prick, and commiserates. She’s dated her share of pricks too. Like six seasons worth. She gets it.

Carrie puts on the dress she wore in that Paris episode of the original series, the giant blue peacock one, and she sits by the window, and she eats popcorn.

Did you know the Golden Girls — Dorothy and Rose and Blanche — were younger than Miranda and Carrie and Charlotte are right now? Blanche was FIVE YEARS YOUNGER than Miranda. Aging is so weird. But the way we think about aging is even weirder. Like how I am suddenly identifying more with Carrie than with Miranda?! The afternoon truly does know what the morning never suspected.


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Heather Hogan

Heather Hogan is an Autostraddle senior editor who lives in New York City with her wife, Stacy, and their cackle of rescued pets. She's a member of the Television Critics Association, the Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer critic. You can also find her on Twitter, and Instagram.

Heather has written 1352 articles for us.

31 Comments

  1. I’m sure it did wonders to appeal to the straight women (and gay men) watching, but I was definitely not expecting 2 penises in the one episode. I’m definitely enjoying the series, despite any flaws.

    • Hey, this comment comes off as kind of -I hope unintentionally- transphobic. There are queer women and non-binary people who have penises and/or like seeing penises. No need to comment on who you think enjoyed that part of the episode, especially when the next sentence says “despite any flaws” and because you’ve only talked about the penises, it kind of implies that they were flaws? Please be a bit more thoughtful before posting stuff like this.

  2. i honestly wish that after Miranda slept w Che the first time, she spoke to steve and they decided to try an open marriage or something before she fully leaves him. the divorce conversation was so hard to watch and i almost feel like they’re trying to make us hate miranda, when really i’m so excited for her to be figuring out that she’s gay/bi/whatever

    • I would have liked to seen Miranda and Steve have a conversation about her gay feelings and how she was hiding a lot of pain with drinking. This would have tied in to all the insecurities she was feeling in their marriage. I couldn’t help but feel very sad for Steve when he told her that he, “never feels like he is enough for her, but he is always there.” Some folks are mad that Steve and Miranda are breaking up, but that part right there, is why they really should divorce. Steve needs to be with someone who thinks the world of him. Everyone should be.

      I would have also been down for an open marriage discussion. Miranda was just like weeeeeee I am done, time to go be with Che. Girl, figure some shit out first.

  3. I know Miranda’s obsession/love? for Che seems over the top but unfortunately when I had my first actual queer crush/love as an ADULT I was that naive and delusional tooo. It makes me cringe so hard to look back on it but at the same time it does feel kind of realistic to me. I was ready to blow up my life, lol. Che being “in love” with Miranda doesn’t make sense to me though.

    • I agree so hard. I don’t get it. Clearly Che is okay with non-monogamy, so them loving Miranda very likely doesn’t mean the same thing as Miranda thinks love means (something leading to monogamous marriage), but what had Miranda done except spiral out of control in front of Che? That’s not lovable.

      Miranda was absolutely cruel in the divorce announcement to her husband who hasn’t done anything to her except not be Che. Che is unaware of that awfulness but the audience is. I think we’re supposed to hate her?

  4. Che really spent that whole first conversation with Miranda like: “My ex-wife Arizona Robbins cheated on me during a power outage after I spent a year nursing her and her trauma and her one leg back to health, and I had to flee to New York with a piece of bran muffin named Penelope about it, so NO I do not cheat, Miranda!!!! Don’t even get me started on my ex-husband George who cheated on me with a ghost fucker, joined the army, and got hit by a bus!!!!”

  5. “She nearly combusts right there on the sidewalk and is already printing out divorce papers from the Staples mobile app to pick up on her way home”

    “The energy she is giving in this scene — and, in fact, in this entire episode — is that little pig named Wallace from the Geico commercials who hangs out of the car window holding a pinwheel and screaming”

    YES 100% to both these above quotations and also this whole recap

    By the end of the episode I was like, open marriage is actually a really good idea for you Miranda!! Idk maybe explain the whole situation and float that to Steve before asking for a divorce out of absolutely nowhere (to him)?

    I’m pretty sure that next episode Che is going to say something like “yeah I do love you but I love a lot of people!” Cue Miranda wanting to go back to the open marriage idea

    Also, the Golden Girls being the same age or younger than the SaTC ladies now is WILD. Also also, despite being 20 years younger than Carrie here, I would have no shame in becoming the Wicked Witch of the West Side or whatever and telling the annoying downstairs neighbors to please shut up at 4 IN THE MORNING WHAT. Nope.

  6. Continuing to beat the “Che isn’t funny, insightful or attractive” drum over here. They’re such a parody it grosses me out. But anyway, they would NOT be in love with Miranda and Miranda looks like she needs some Xanax and a lie down. The Steve scene was sooooo terrible. How you gonna do him like that?! Hooow.

  7. Such a good recap! This really sums up the episode for me:

    “Steve: Um. Okay. Are you dying or something? Are we getting a divorce? Why do you look like a wolf right now?
    Miranda: No to dying, I’M AS ALIVE AS THE WIND! AS ALIVE AS LIGHTING! I AM ETERNAL! But yes to the divorce.”

    I wouldn’t want to be around when Miranda’s bubble bursts; it’s like watching someone on a roller coaster soaring to the top while bragging that they’ll never come down. How does she have time for her schoolwork in all this?

  8. I’m crying at your description of Miranda’s gigantic smile that she seems unable to contain. She looks manic most of the time and it’s scaring me. Also I really need her to just be a little more chill. Also also, Che being in love with her after 3 weeks? I don’t buy it. And why can’t she just wait for Che to come back to New York to tell them about the divorce??

    I think I hate this show most of all for making me feel bad for Steve.

  9. Does no one remember that Steve literally cheated on Miranda while they were married, and that her friends constantly guilted her into settling for him? I think the Che drama is bad, I don’t condone cheating. But people are really coming to bat for Steve, which he certainly does not deserve.

    • I think the thing with Steve is, if you were going to root for one of the guys, he was one of the less bad ones! So maybe less that he’s great and more he’s not Big, or whoever someone might view as the real creep.

      My wife and I are rewatching the show and wooooooow is it eye opening watching it as a married full adult! For me, liking Steve is also a reflection on what I wanted/needed from a partner, especially then, and far less about his actual character.

      I was just relieved they didn’t turn him into some asshole in that divorce scene since basically everything about Miranda’s storylines have made no sense (the Brady sex, wtffff?). If they get a handle on things though, I think it would be realllly interesting to actually explore “is work and dessert ritual all there is to life?” with Miranda. This may be me projecting again, but I do wonder if Miranda (very unlike Cynthia Nixon) is actually someone who wants to be a person with “more” in their life, but in reality is moreso a person satisfied with dessert, but struggles to reconcile that with how she sees herself.

  10. All my gay male friends are up in arms about Poor Steve, thank you Heather, for summarizing because I can’t be bothered to actually watch this show.

    Blanche would have no time for the SATC ladies and their aging crises. If only Rose had gotten together with that lesbian guest star who was literally a friend of Dorothy.

    • Yeah Miranda is in for a culture shock! She thinks she’s okay with non-traditional & divorce, but if only it were all that simple… her character consistently makes me CRINGE. And she does seem manic in many aspects of her middle age crisis life. I never saw her as being an inconsistent person in SATC, but she always had an irritated edge to her. That’s what happens when you’re trying to force the expected cis rule book on your repressed queer self. And now it comes to a head. Steve will be okay. He’s adorable, consistent, stable, a human too, & he’ll be okay. Who gets the brownstone?! Also, their kid is an asshole.

      The BJ scene was SO WEIRD. Charlotte didn’t seem willing at first but was talked into it… it was cringey & awkward & I’m sure piled onto her list of resentments.

      This show isn’t bad once you realize it’s not Sex & the City. It’s the Golden Girls: NYC 2022. If the girls were all wealthy, dealing with today’s problems.

  11. Thank you for conveying how maniacal Miranda was acting the whole episode. She’s cheating, and her lover is pissed they were party to cheating and didn’t know, and she just keeps deliriously smiling? as if what she did is fine just b/c she’s just filled with love and excitement?
    Good on Che for TRYING to sit her down and get across that they cant do anything traditional. Until then, I felt bad that Miranda’s inevitably gonna get her heartbroken, but her inability to ask clarifying questions has landed this squarely as Miranda’s fault when it all blows up.

  12. I am loving these recaps. The maniacal smiling was the least of my worries! For me, as I’m watching I feel so bad for how Steve is presented. I’m deaf and every time I see Miranda yelling at her husband who now has acquired hearing loss I feel mad. Such gross representation. Hearing loss is almost presented as a thing we’re supposed to laugh at?! It’s like a thing about his character that’s made him look bumbling and not together. I’m not sure if anyone else who may be deaf/Deaf/hard of hearing can relate… Please tell me it’s not just me!

    Can you hear me Steve?!!! Miranda screams. And I scream a little more inside. Where’s your hearing aid? Just talk into the ear with it on! Steve explains. Like, okay, putting aside the fact they are clearly well-off, does Steve just leave his hearing aids in the couch? And, of course he has a deafness that can be ‘corrected’ with hearing aids, and of course, raising your voice to yell is going to help people hear you when the person has hearing loss or is deaf (lol – in what world?!)

    For the people who lip read – you become LESS understandable if you start yelling and expecting this to be somehow more heard! Sigh.

    Other than this, massive cringe at the Miranda/Che and inevitable heartbreak. I nearly spat my tea out when Che said I love you…

    But my comment about this episode really is this: And just like that, Miranda shows us that just because you can hear, doesn’t mean you know how to listen to others (or yourself) 😅

    • I am not deaf/Deaf/hard of hearing so I am sure my reaction lacks nuance but I definitely got the same impression you did about how we’re supposed to react to his acquired hearing loss! I was surprised to find out that Steve was written with hearing aids because the actor who plays him has them and the writers thought it made his character more realistic. I say surprised because it seems like they had a great source to help them get it right and they certainly did not!

  13. This recap is 👌🏽.
    I was looking forward to this reboot when I heard there would be queer storylines ( & Sarah Ramirez!) but really did not expect to find myself feeling bad for the straight white cis guy on this show. I get that Miranda isnt happy but it takes two (at least) to make a relationship dynamic so it’s not just on Steve that they’ve fallen into a decade long rut…

    Also that GG vs AJLT age thing is wild. 🤯

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