Warning: This article contains major spoilers.
And just like that … Mr. Big was dead.
Fans are in mourning after the leading man from “Sex and the City” was killed off in the very first episode of the new spinoff, “And Just Like That…”
The highly-anticipated series premiered on HBO Max at midnight on Thursday, with viewers tuning in to see the colorful cast of characters for the first time since the “Sex and the City 2” movie back in 2010.
“And Just Like That…” finds Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Big (Chris Noth) still happily married, living in their lavish New York City apartment and navigating life in their 50s.
But tragedy befalls the famous TV couple in the final moments of the 44-minute-long premiere episode, with Carrie arriving home to find that Big has suffered from a heart attack while taking a Peloton class.
The shocking episode concludes with Big dying in Carrie’s arms as she burst into tears.
Stunned viewers flocked to Twitter to express both grief and rage, with one writing: “Me trying to process that Big died in the first ep of ‘Sex and the City’ reboot. Can Carrie never be happy or?? We literally went through 6 seasons and 2 films of pain, drama & happy endings now this?! I’mma pretend this show never existed for my own happiness.”
Another blasted: “AND JUST LIKE THAT…. They ruined ‘Sex and the City’. F–k you HBO Max and [executive producer] Michael Patrick King!!! Not even going to watch this abomination of a show!!! Thanks for destroying Big and Carrie!’
A third distraught fan simply posted: “In shock. Please let it be a dream.”
However, the second episode of the series — which was also released on HBO Max Thursday — revolves around Carrie’s preparations for Big’s funeral, proving the death was no dream sequence.
And while at least Big and Carrie had one last hookup together before he went to his final, plush resting place in the skye, it was painful for many to witness the “weird” scene in which Noth’s Big masturbated as Carrie slinked onto their bed to watch. (And did we really need the trendy “Bridgerton” reference?)
As the kids would say: Cringe.
The passing of Big was an especially shocking twist since actress Kim Cattrall refused to reprise her role as Samantha in the new series, which prompted many “SATC” lovers to theorize that her character would be killed off.
Instead, “And Just Like That…” finds Samantha alive and well — if invisible to viewers and she’s living in London after a falling-out with Carrie and company.
On social media, many claimed the new series was suffering without Samantha’s sassy presence.
“Watching the new ‘Sex and the City’. Desperately missing Samantha,” one opined.
Another concurred: “Remember back when we watched ‘Sex and the City’ and wondered what the show would be like without stylish Samantha and her quick wit? Well, wonder no more. #AndJustLikeThat is super woke, but still bores viewers into a coma… Bring back Kim Cattrall.”
“Sex and the City” was never (or rarely) diverse, much less politically correct, so perhaps it was about time that the fab four — well, three now — got a little comeuppance. The world has evolved and gotten more inclusive since the second sequel film in 2010.
So “And Just Like That…” is notably more diverse than the original “Sex and the City,” with the arrival of a nonbinary character and several actors of color. But viewers who enjoyed the escapism and conspicuous consumption of the original “Sex and the City” found the new scenario forced. And just like that, cosmos and catty barbs, the audience was pummeled liberal buzzwords like “sex-shamed,” “patriarchy,” “gender binary,” “offensive,” “consent,” “cisgender,” “woke,” “white savior complex,” and on and on.
“God this new sex and the city series is trying so hard to be woke and inclusive that it’s cringe,” one viewer complained.
“Reboot of ‘Sex and the City’ is pretty awful. I could not finish the first episode . I am not sure who this show is for but it will be a huge failure . It’s not funny or entertaining and has the worst elements of woke culture,” another stated.
Even if you hadn’t paid attention to social media spoilers, many elements of the premiere episode also were predictable from the get-go. Fans learn that newly-woke-ish Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) has quit her corporate law job to obtain a master’s degree in human rights and decides to pop into the iconic Smith’s bar and restaurant in Midtown at 10:45 a.m. before her first college class to down a glass of chablis. When told they didn’t open for 15 more minutes, Miranda decided it was cool to wait.
Also not entirely unexpected: When Big saddled up to his Peloton and started sweating bullets, you simply knew a heart attack was in his immediate future. But that also leads to a head-scratching question: Why didn’t Carrie immediately call 9-1-1 after she rushed to him while he suffered, sopping wet, on the bathroom floor? It’s like she actually wanted him dead so she could give her ex Aidan — played by “SATC” alum John Corbett, who will reportedly return for the spinoff — yet another shot.
Perhaps, again, viewers know where this is headed.
One bright spot: Maybe the spinoff, if successful, will mean more residuals for the show’s muse, author Candace Bushnell, who could now save face and strut away from her “insufferable” (in the word of one critic) one-woman, off-Broadway tell-all show, “Is There Still Sex in the City?”
Because, clearly, there are other issues to deal with.