“And Just Like That” Miranda and Che Leave Pretend Life Behind

This And Just Like That recap contains mild spoilers for season two, episode three, “Chapter Three.” 

Oh my heavens, y’all! Finally! Finally! I have been watching Sex and the City for half my adult life, in large part because the straight woman I was in love with in my 20s was obsessed with it. Year after year, season after season, so much I couldn’t even comment on because I had no idea what to say due to all the straightness and fashions. And now, in Just Like That‘s second season, I finally have something to add to the conversation because there’s an outfit I both understand and adore! Behold, Richard Burton on a rainy NYC day!

Richard Burton out walking in his rain gear.

I used to walk into the room head down / I don’t walk, now I float

Richard Burton out walking in his rain gear.

Float on ’em, I float on ’em, just float

Classic yellow raincoat paired with blue Wagwear Wagwellies that are both rugged and stylish? It’s giving Paddington. It’s giving Gene Kelly. Richard Burton simply does not miss!

Obviously Richard Burton’s outfit is the highlight of “Chapter Three,” but the whole thing is honestly great. The SATC-iest episode of AJLT so far. The writers even found a way to balance Carrie’s understandably sprawling grief with the absurd humor that has always made these characters seem even semi-relatable.

In fact, let’s just start there because it’s only a short skip from where Richard Burton is prancing merrily in the rain: A teenage boy at Arbor Academy has made a MILF list, which Charlotte and Lisa Todd Wexley somehow get their hands on. They are delighted to discover that they’re numbers two and three in the rankings, and when the principal announces that this offense is going on this kid’s permanent record, Charlotte and LTW jump up in front of all the parents to defend him. The other moms are like, “You’re just standing up for him because you’re at the top of the list” and, in unison, Charlotte and LTW gasp and dramatically ask, “ARE WE???” The gay dads sitting beside them say they actually deserve to be numbers one and two, and who are they to quibble? Just a couple of super hot moms looking out for the best interests of their exceedingly rich children!

Charlotte and Lisa Todd Wexley looking scandalized

I beg your pardon, who are you calling Golden Girls?

Charlotte’s also on Best Friend Duty the entire episode. Miranda calls her, in a total Hobbes Spiral™️, when things start unraveling in Los Angeles. Stuff seems mostly fine with Miranda and Che, maybe because Miranda is spending every free second focused on Che and their sitcom. She’s running lines with Che, she’s attending Che’s show, she’s pep-talking Che every time they get upset about whatever new nightmare ¿Che Pasa? is throwing at them. (The blue hair, the zoot suits, the LAUGH TRACK.) I mean, Miranda’s not perfect at being a kept woman, but that’s only because the guy at T-Mobile talked her into getting an Android after she lost her iPhone to the sea last episode.

Miranda keeps botching Tony Danza’s lines and doing this hilarious/embarrassing thing that I also do all the time these days, which is shouting, “Why did they type get small again?!?” any time I’m using any kind of electronic device. I’ve reached the point where I just thrust my Kindle at my wife multiple times a day and she resets the font back to level five so I can read it. Che doesn’t seem like the kind of patient partner who’d be willing to do that, so Miranda goes back to T-Mobile and gets another iPhone.

Che Diaz wearing sunglasses inside.

What? Megan Rapinoe wears sunglasses inside.

Miranda looks annoyed at her phone.

Rapinoe. Rapinoe. She’s the soccer player married to the basketball girl. Candace Parker?

Which is how she finds out that Brady’s been trying to call her like a hundred times because he’s in Prague and his girlfriend has broken up with him! He is so upset, just standing in the middle of the street in the middle of the night sobbing and saying he didn’t want to talk to Steve! He wanted to talk to his mom! When he screeches that he wishes a car would just run him over, Miranda tells him to get on a plane and she’ll meet him back in New York.

This does throw a wrench in Miranda’s plans to be at all of the ¿Che Pasa? tapings, and also in her idea to get like a whole “fun robot” tattoo sleeve up her arm. (“Ah, shoulda seen that coming,” Carrie says when Miranda calls her from the tattoo shop.) Ricky, the Tattoo Therapist, is much more understanding about this change of plans than Che, because Ricky is self-actualized and able to see beyond his own needs and feelings. Che Diaz? Not so much. I mean, yes, they’re upset because Miranda brought their phone into the ¿Che Pasa? taping because of Brady threatening to jump in front of a bus, and it did kind of ruin their big coming out scene, but then Che calls Brady “just a kid” who’s having his first heartbreak, like he’s some random ginger-haired youth Miranda bumped into on the street and not the literal human child she grew inside her.

Miranda leaves “pretend life” behind and hurries home to catch Brady in her arms when he walks in the door and breaks down. It’s very sweet.

Che's showrunner screams at the studio audience.

Okay she doesn’t know the difference between Sue Bird and Candace Parker.

Tony Danza takes up for Che Diaz on set

I, Tony Danza, am not entirely sure we should be gatekeeping queerness based on pop culture knowledge.

Carrie’s having a breakdown too, but she’s trying to keep it to herself because she feels like the time limit is up on her grief. Unfortunately, she’s got to go to the studio to record herself reading the audiobook of her memoir about Big dying, over and over and over and over. She pretends to have Covid to get out of it, before finally confessing to a Louis Vuitton mask-wearing Seema that she made the whole thing up because she can’t say Big died out loud anymore right now. Seema gives Carrie the same advice as  Bitsy von Muffling(!!!!!) if you can believe it. She says something horrible happened to Carrie, and yeah, you move forward, but maybe the truth is that you never really move on. The gaping hole of grief will always be there; you just gotta grow some flowers around it and find new ways to live.

Seema’s able to access this advice despite her own grief, over her favorite Birkin bag getting mugged right off of her. She’s also able to access the name Blanche Devereaux like it’s actually French, like “Blanche Du-va-RAH.” It’s the wildest thing I’ve ever heard anyone say. “Oui oui, chef, I will enjoy this krwa-san like Blanche Du-va-RAH!”

Seema pulls out a lighter that looks like a gun

Sir, it’s not a real gun, but she really will murder you.

At first I was like, “Just get another tote, Seema; good grief!” because I, too, have had my bag stolen off my back in NYC. But it turns out my JanSport backpack from 1999 wasn’t quite as valuable as Seema’s Birkin bag, which costs MORE THAN A HOUSE. I don’t know how that compares to the Telfar bag Mo bought Janine on Abbott Elementary this season, but I do now know two brand names of purses, so I’ve got a head start if I ever decide to leave my pockets behind and become a fancy femme.

In accepting the fact that her grief is always going to be with her, Carrie is able to find the strength to read the chapter of her memoir where Big dies in her arms. And then she gets Covid for real from flirting with a rugby team when she goes out with Seema to celebrate. Being straight, it always gets ya in the end.

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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 1719 articles for us.

12 Comments

  1. Thanks for writing these recaps! And so fast after the episode airing :)

    I’m not emotionally attached to the show and characters. I have watched SATC for years, but I’m able to enjoy all of it, even Che Diaz.

    But I agree with Carrie when she told Miranda, it’s time to return to New York. It’s not Che Diaz, but Miranda spiralling and going through a second puberty. It’s gone on too long.

    Also, it’s only thanks to SATC that this soft butch knows what Birkin and Manolo Blahniks are :D

  2. Birkins are over $15k for a simple leather. The more exotic materials (croc skins, snakeskins, etc.) Supposedly, they signal wealth. They’re made my a French luxury brand that’s been around for 100+ years

    Telfar totes are a few hundred $$ and made of faux leather. Online, they’ve been called the Bushwick Birkins (but I’ve never heard people say this irl). They’re difficult to get since they drop at specific intervals and sell out quickly. So these signal cool. This brand is black-owned and around 15 years old.

    • Thank you for this, I kept seeing the raised T on bags on celebs, but didn’t know the brand name until Abbott nor the price range until you. I also appreciate learning about the ownership.

      In short, even though I am not the pocketbook toting type, I might be on the lookout for something that suits more my style because I now know it is affordable luxury. Plus, it is probably less likely to discriminate based on color like when Hermes didn’t recognize Oprah.

  3. Great article and spot on, except the reference was “Blanche DuBois,” from “A Streetcar Named Desire,” not “Blanche Devereaux” from “The Golden Girls,” although I admit the latter would be much funnier. I want Tennessee Williams to get his nod, though. Hugs-

    • Haha I was reading that part and wondering to myself “in what part of France is Devereaux pronounced DuvaRAH? Am I a bad French person?” This makes SO much more sense, especially because I am never going to actually watch AJLT and find out for myself.

  4. I didn’t notice who wrote this before I started reading and by about one paragraph in I knew it was Heather Hogan. Respect for your strong writing voice–that’s not easy!

  5. FAVE Lines …

    I have been watching Sex and the City for half my adult life, in large part because the straight woman I was in love with in my 20s was obsessed with it.

    I do now know two brand names of purses, so I’ve got a head start if I ever decide to leave my pockets behind and become a fancy femme.

    … funny, relatable. In my case it was a straight friend I was never interested in that way and I love the acknowledgment of different types of femme.

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