The Sex Closet
By Maria L Gaycheck
The television show “Sex and the City” was one of the highest rated shows on HBO next to Sopranos. It was watched by both straight and gay males with a larger demographic of women. But, the men were watching. Even when it went to the TNT with all edits serve a light punch to the populous. All the reports are saying that the only way the straight males are getting inside the theater to watch “Sex and the City” are by forced, guilt or the men are just plain whipped.
Why? I believe there are two simple reasons why men are not running to the box office; 1. being it is not on the television and 2. the movie is not about the boys.
Throughout the entire television series “Sex and the City” characters of both male and female were egually developed. Carrie’s character could not have been believable without understanding the men whether it was a love, lust or looser. This can be said with all major female character including Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda. Without witnesses all (a cumulative total) ninety-four (94) males coming and going in their lives the series would have done better on the Lifetime network.
Samantha 42, Carrie 18, Charlotte 18, and Miranda with the least 17 sexual partners which we were introduced to their personal quirks either through a conversation over rice pudding or be coming a sexual voyeur watching their sex acts. We watched within the comforts of our homes the game of sex/relationship of not just the four main characters but all the males and one lesbian.
On our couch, love seat, chaise lounge or while in bed we watch “Sex and the City”. We could cheer for Charlotte when she finally realized that the best guy for her is not another WASP with the perfect last name. We celebrated Samantha when she allowed herself to throw off her wig, used one of her many f*cks and become who we expected a tough woman who says what she wants when she wants. We felt the separation pains of Miranda leaving the island of Manhattan to the borough of Brooklyn. Our heart beats simultaneously when Mr. Big was summoned “go get our girl” and held our breaths until the final cell phone call, from John, “NY hear I come”. With merriment we got to see the smile of Carrie as she finally found love and the relationship that was a focus for a half-hour each week for the six season.
For the six seasons we were in our own homes, it was information shared only between my Tivo and me. The men and women could be safe in the secret “Sex and the City” closet. Even on a raining Sunday we could watch episode after episode for hours while we stained our wood, darned our socks or reading the New York Times, financial section.
With the movie coming to the big screen, it means that everyone would have to come out of our safe and secure “Sex and the City” closets. It means going to the box office, asking for one ticket to “Sex and the City” which is not nearly as manly as asking for one ticket to “Lord of the Rings” for the 12th time. Yes, the geek men watched “Sex and the City”.
Being a geek girl and dominated by men all around me in my office and in my family (3 brothers). They all watched “Sex and the City”. All of them. How did I know . . . we discussed each episode the following day or at the next appropriate time. Jenny said many Doctors while in residency, externships and medical school watched and raved, yes raved about the show . . . all are or were straight male Doctors.
So, what happened? Besides not feeling confident in their manhood to buy the ticket, there were other better movies to spend on a national limited budget or it was not showing in their home theater (none of which I believe) what is a good reason for a straight male not to see the movie?
How about this . . . there were no men in the movie. Yes, yes I know there were men playing roles in the movie. But, there was no development. Unlike the women, we see them hurt, celebrate, depressed, get fat, exercise, cry, laugh, get drunk, read email, move, pack, unpack, make sushi and even poop in the pants. But, where were the male developments we so loved. We only see tiny glimpse of men and tiny snippets of characters. They could have done the whole movie without the men, like “The Women”, and let the conversations lead the storyline. But the “Sex and the City” movie did not do the male characters justice and wasted a bunch of one-liners as substitutes for development.
If you never say the “Sex and the City” television show anyone could jump in and watch the movie. It would be a movie about four women. Unlike the television show, it was about the women and the men, all 94. Each of those 94 we knew who was good, bad, too small, too big, too distant, who had AADS, who took a bath after sex, who wanted anal, who wanted a relationship, who wanted to just talk, who was the f*ck buddy, who was Catholic, Jewish, a rocker, a waiter/actor, who was powerful, obsessed with food and spices, who was wilderness boy, artistic, selfish, impotent, and many many more. We knew it all. We knew what would satisfy our girl for the moment and for the rest of their lives. We knew everything about the men in their lives, but only in the television series.
In the “Sex and the City” movie there is no way that a person who never saw the television series could understand Steve, Mr Big, Harry or even the charm of Jerrod. The only glimpse of understanding Jerrod is when Samantha said, “He stood by me when I had cancer”. The minimal peek into the world of Harry is seeing the smiles and praise from Charlotte. The fraction of dialog of the character Steve is not only minimal but he just came across the screen as the most wimpiest guy not worthy of Miranda. And finally who wrote for Mr. Big? Mr. Big became Mr. Tiny in an instant, with a whimper and no voice. Within the television series Mr. Big always, always, spoke his mind . . . even to the demise of the relationship. So, now with a few years has Carrie whipped Mr Big? Has he become Little John? Who wants to see that.
So, why should any straight guy go see the movie? My opinion, they shouldn’t. There wasn’t a male character worth seeing or a relationship worth having. The movie made all four Women be exactly what I never wanted, selfish, demanding, and strong without some support. I want to see successful people, especially women. But without some strong partner in life it is never worth being at the time alone. The theater title should not have been called “Sex in the City” rather it should titled a more realistic representation “Masturbation in the City”. Nothing to watch but individuals taking care of themselves, alone.
That should keep the “Sex and the City” closet securely closed, forever.