“And Just Like That” Miranda and Che Are in Shambles

This And Just Like That recap contains spoilers for season two, episode five, “Trick or Treat.” 

I haven’t Googled myself since 2010, my second year of being a professional writer on satan’s internet. Actually, no, that’s a lie. I haven’t Googled myself and clicked on anything since 2010. Sometimes I do like to search myself to see if the Heather Hogan who voiced Ducky in The Land Before Time is still Google’s most popular Heather Hogan. (She is.) Unfortunately for Miranda Hobbes and her currently decimated life, Che Diaz does not have the same self-preservation instincts as me, so they agree to attend a live focus group feedbacking ¿Che Pasa? and it absolutely ruins their …day? …career? …life? I don’t know, man. It’s bad. Everybody likes Tony Danza but they think Che is a “bullshit version of what the nonbinary experience is,” which is what Che’s been afraid of this entire time. It’a also Lez Girls meta, like And Just Like That’s writers are lecturing us on being weird about Che Diaz. But, like, Che Diaz should have been a home run, you guys. It’s butch nonbinary Sara Ramirez. That’s on you.

Che is crushed and starts spiraling out about money and what they’re gonna do with their life and just a full-on existential crisis. Sara Ramirez is giving Callie Torres in this scene and it’s fantastic. I almost started crying just out of nostalgia. I feel so horrible for them! And for Miranda, who keeps making it worse and worse every time she says anything to try to be helpful. Which is weird because she’s talked Carrie out of ten thousand meltdowns like this in her life, but it’s also inevitable. Remember when Che got upset a couple of episodes ago and Miranda screamed, “Che, what do I do???” Miranda’s just as lost as Che is; she just doesn’t fully know it yet.

Che watches the pilot of their TV show.

Oh man, I love this episode. This is the one where Blanche becomes an actual homicide suspect when Rose talks the girls into going on a murder mystery cruise.

Che says they need some space from Miranda, who’s basically been living with them because of Steve and his boxing bag, rushing home to Brooklyn every morning to try to mom-love Brady into going to college. Luckily, Dr. Nya comes through with a spare room for Miranda to stay in, on account of feeding all of Andre’s stuff to some harbor sharks. It’s a good plan, there’s only so much couch a middle age back can handle — but ultimately Miranda’s going to have to remember who she is, and grab her former cisheteronormativity by the horns, and lawyer it into submission. She cannot keep living like this!

Other characters who decide they cannot keep living like this are Carrie, Seema, and Nya. And by “this,” I mean “sex-less.” These gals are hor-ny and also it’s Halloween (last episode it was the middle of summer, who knows) which somehow makes thirsty people even thirstier. I don’t know if it’s the sugar or the costumes or what, but this is a scientific fact. Charlotte and Harry are obviously throwing a costume party, despite the fact that Carrie would most certainly rather spend her fall fashion hours walking around in various scarves and cashmere coats in Central Park. She decides to split the diff and attend the party as Helen Gurley Brown, the first EIC of Cosmo. She even tucks a Cosmo magazine under her arm as a prop. (Harry and Charlotte go as Elizabeth and Phillip Jennings from The Americans, Lisa Todd Wexley goes at the Bride of Frankenstein, Dr. Nya goes as Catwoman and gives me palpitations, Seema dresses as Seema of course, and Miranda just puts a red clown nose on and goes as her own personal life.)

Carrie and Miranda walk in the park on Halloween

I mean, luckily you had that gold polka dot jumpsuit in your closet already.

Carrie, Seema, and Nya decide to go cruising for men at a five-star hotel, which is not a thing I knew women did! It honestly seems kinda smart if you’re a wealthy gal in NYC looking for a one-night stand! Things go great for Nya. Things go Samantha Jones for Seema, who ends up with a man who has erectile dysfunction, and needs to use a penis pump, which doesn’t actually bother her; what bothers her is when he gets weird about her vibrator. B+ sex and she calls Carrie first thing the next morning to hash the whole thing out.

Carrie strikes out at the hotel but does end up meeting a guy who runs over her in a bike lane. It’s Charles from Younger! Perfect casting! Straight women are still so pissed about how things went down for poor rich handsome successful Charles in the final season of Younger! He plays the exact same character here, only he does apps instead of book publishing. At first Carrie thinks he’s A Poor and almost writes him a check in the urgent care she escorts him to after the bike wreck. Luckily, she spares herself that embarrassment and engages in a little bit of old school Carrie Bradshaw-style stalking, which leads her to his very wealthy guy apartment. Carrie is more turned on by money than she is by Halloween, so she tries to have herself a little fling with Charles. Unfortunately, he loves money too, more than sex, and interrupts their hookup to take a work call. Carrie decides this is not for her, but the pain of that Post-It note still lives on in her heart, so she lets Charles down by screaming out into his huge empty house that she’ll be going now, because they’re in different places in their lives, but he does seem like a nice guy, and have a good day! OKAY NO HARD FEELINGS BYE!

Miranda sits sadly on the porch in front of a happy pumpkin

What are you smiling about PUMPKIN?

The only person who’s really winning this week is Rock, who gets an offer to be in a Ralph Lauren campaign. Charlotte loves this because it’s something she actually has in common with Rock! Harry loves it less because, well, he’s worried but also he’s used to being the fun parent, and this modeling thing is making Charlotte the fun parent. Wait’ll Victor Garber shows back up and offers her a job again and she decides that if her child can have a full life and work, she can too. You just wait for that, Harry!

Finally, I regret to inform you that Che Diaz said the word “curry-lingus” out loud in this episode, and if I have to live with that knowledge, you do too.

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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, GALECA: The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics, and a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer critic. You can also find her on Twitter and Instagram.

Heather has written 1718 articles for us.


  1. Were we (the audience) supposed to feel like we were being scolded for not liking the Che character in that focus group scene? I took it as FINALLY! the show is saying what many/most of us have been thinking about the character this whole time! Che does come across like a caricature, so the emotional beat didn’t really hit (with me).

    This is a person who said they didn’t want a traditional relationship, but that’s kind of what they’ve been doing? Except for now when I think they might just ghost Miranda and then get themselves off the hook by saying, but remember! I told you I didn’t do relationships! It’s a very “Big-like” move. Every episode I hope Miranda gets it together, and she doesn’t.

  2. I’ve always liked Che, but when I heard that the original plan was Miranda/Nya, I felt cheated! It’s so unlikely now, but I’m still pleased about this development. (“And they were roommates”…?)

    Still a bit worried that Miranda will end up sleeping with Steve, or staying married to him in the end. Surely not, right?

    • I don’t think she’ll sleep with Steve, I think they’re going to make Steve out to be the bad guy somehow, and she’ll come across like she was trying to make things amicable (you know, after cheating repeatedly), but he was the jerk.

        • I agree with Jenn. Hated how Smith supported Samantha through breast cancer, but Samantha didn’t want to support Smith’s career anymore…even though she was a PR for other people for years AND was probably going to do the same after the breakup.

          Jay, why are you a Steve hater? Maybe I missed something in the presentation of his character.

          • The short(ish) version: To me, Miranda and Steve never seemed compatible and they should’ve broken up and stayed broken up after he was insecure about making less money than her. But I didn’t start actively hating him until he pressured her to have a baby. They parted ways again and I was relieved, only to have her actually get pregnant despite not wanting to be a parent, finally decide she loved him, and get stuck with this guy (presumably) forever. Then he cheated on her after all that!  Down with Steve!!

            It always seemed like she settled for him, which she wouldn’t have done if not for Brady.  So her arc last season made perfect sense to me!

    • I like Steve. I would only be upset about Miranda staying married to him if she was not sincere. I feel Steve deserves better and Miranda still prefers a little abuse. If she were to stay with him at this point, he would have to reintroduce his bartender attitude correcting her and such.

      • I like Steve too, but I agree that she probably would not have gotten married if it weren’t for Brady AND the fact that she felt jealous and insecure about his hot girlfriend.

        • She realized she was in love with him before she learned about Debbie!!

          Steve/Miranda is my favorite straight ship in the world so I have an encyclopedic knowledge of their relationship lolll

  3. I applaud the use of “Charles from Younger” as a stand-in for the actor’s actual name…which I can never remember…and just ultimately end up calling him Mariska Hargitay’s husband.

  4. Ok so I hated the entire focus group plot, because I hate when shows go meta to cold their audiences about disliking their show (Lena Waithe used a lot of plot in the second season of Twenties to scold about Black audiences who disliked some her penchant for showcasing Black violence). Lez Girls was at least in on the joke.

    There was such an opportunity to course correct on how they wrote Che — this character should have been a slam dunk — and instead they’ve chosen to double down on what audiences didn’t like and also lecture us about it???? It takes so much work for me to root for someone to break up with a character that has Sara Ramirez’s face, honestly I didn’t even know it was possible, but here we are.

    At least I’m not the only one who picked up on the notes of Callie Torres in Sara’s line delivery during their breakdown!! It was nostalgic and I’m grateful for that moment. (Also, speaking of nostalgia, the penis pump plot was straight up out of a Samantha Jones playbook and I loved it.)

    • The character should have worked, but I don’t think it’s a particularly diverse writer’s room? Correct me if I’m wrong. So of course they come off as flat and caricaturish.

      I don’t know if anyone watched Madam Secretary, but Sara Ramirez was in the last couple seasons of that. I think they were also non-binary in that, the wardrobe and styling was similar (more suits than t-shirts, a bit more conservative), and in that she actually had the “heart-to-heart with dad about her orientation.” The premise was similar to what she didn’t want to do in Che Pasa, but it was affecting.

      I never watched Grey’s so I’m not familiar with their work there, but it’s clear AJLT wasted their talent.

      • Funny enough, but the writers room of AJLT is my favorite subject! Because there’s a famous rule in SATC-and-adjacent properties that nothing should happen to the characters that hasn’t happened to someone in the writers room, which meant that as the show “diversified” then so did the writers room… but only in theory.

        The first season of AJLT added Black and South Asian writers to the writers room, reflecting the identities of the new characters, but no trans or Latine writers, and I one thousand percent believed that showed up in the (lack of) writing for Che, who definitely came across and still comes across as a flat caricature. I don’t know if they fixed this glaring issue for the second season, I haven’t checked, but this is just to say that I definitely think you’re right.

        Also, I thoroughly enjoyed Sara’s work in Madam Secretary!

  5. This tweet sums up my feelings about Miranda and Che! Why is Miranda staying with someone so selfish, who ignores her wants and needs, dismisses the importance of her kid and family, isn’t emotionally available, etc? OG Miranda would not have accepted this behavior. (If the show is trying to make some argument about toxic queer relationships and why people might stay in those, I would be interested in that, but I am not sure that it is.)


    On another note, I am having such trouble following the B/C/D storylines on this show. What exactly happened with Dr. Nya’s marriage? Why does LTW’s husband want to be comptroller and what does that even mean? Does she have her own storyline this season? Is Seema’s only role on this show to be the new Samantha? There’s so many characters and not enough time to do justice to them all. It feels particularly shitty that the women of color in the cast are getting the short end of the stick.

    • Last season with Miranda running off to LA last season, turning down her internship (which was a huge middle finger to Nya who recommended her!), flaking out on school (just assumed she could do remote work??), etc. all of that was exactly what she got all up in arms about in the series finale. Carrie quitting her job, running off to Paris, all for the hope of a future with someone (and Petrovsky seemed more committed than Che at least!).

      She’s the character who has changed in the most unrecognizable ways. It doesn’t seem like growth, it’s a complete 180. She’s unrecognizable.

      People do come out later in life (the actress did after all), but the character had been adamant that she wasn’t a lesbian before. There was a whole storyline about it. If things changed, why not write that in? Have her recall what happened earlier and comment on it? Why is this different? Has she had similar feelings that she tried to ignore? That would have also informed her feelings for Steve more than just “he’s old and I’m bored.” Instead the show tries to act like earlier experiences never happened. Did they just forget?

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