Sex And The City Preview Review: Season Two

One week down, five more to go in our six week countdown to the Sex and the City movie! Last week we recapped season one, in which fabulous New York City singleton Carrie Bradshaw loved and lost Mr. Big, sharing every intimate detail of their relationship over cosmopolitans with her three equally single girlfriends, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha. Here's what happened next:

The Plot: Season two saw the ladies grow a bit more serious in their quest for love, except of course for Samantha, who ended her relationship with the not-so-well-endowed James when he couldn't handle hearing the truth about his shortcomings in couples therapy. Sam went back to her usual bed-hopping without ever looking back.

Meanwhile, Carrie was having a harder time readjusting to the single life. Despite a rebound fling with "the new Yankee," Carrie couldn't let go of Mr. Big. Then, just when she felt she was making progress, an unflattering picture of her that appeared on a magazine cover with the headline Single and Fabulous? -- when she thought she'd been posing for Single and Fabulous! -- had her questioning her own happiness as a single woman. The untimely death of a fashion designer friend was the final push that had her reigniting things with Mr. Big, before she too ended up alone. And this time, things were different. Sure, he still had a hard time doing "couple" things like signing a card on a gift for a wedding they were attending together, or letting Carrie keep her beauty products in his apartment, but he was getting better. He introduced her to people as his girlfriend and even finally said "I love you" -- mere days after Carrie first said it to him.

Carrie's happiness with the new-and-improved Mr. Big was an inspiration to lonely Charlotte, and shockingly, to the even lonelier and deeply cynical Miranda. The redheaded attorney was growing increasingly fed up with singledom when she faced reactions ranging from pity to disbelief after buying her first apartment. Things got worse when she invited a longtime crush to stay as a houseguest, only to have him fall in love with her interior decorator and get married a month later. Getting publicly humiliated by a date who turned out to be married was the last straw. Miranda was becoming a full-on man hater, and she took her frustrations out on Carrie, whom she accused of making a mistake by getting back together with Mr. Big. The two friends argued on the phone after Carrie bailed on dinner with Miranda in favor of her boyfriend. But Miranda's harsh words for Carrie were overheard by a flirty bartender named Steve who gave her a lesson in manners, and then went home with her for what Miranda thought was a one night stand. But Steve was persistent. When Miranda refused to give him her phone number, thinking he'd only use it for booty calls, he showed up at her apartment again, saying he liked her and asking for a date. Miranda reluctantly invited him to join her and the rest of the ladies at a hotspot called Denial, but then treated him rudely in front of her friends. Steve gave up and left the restaurant, but then something miraculous happened. The non-committal Mr. Big kept his promise for once, and showed up for dinner to get better acquainted with Carrie's friends. Seeing that the change in Carrie's relationship was for real had Miranda running out of Denial and kissing Steve in the rain. And with that, the second most legendary relationship in SATC history was born.

Unfortunately, Miranda and Steve weren't meant to last (at least not this time). At first their schedules seemed incompatible. She was a workaholic attorney who logged long hours during the day, and he was a bartender that worked all night. But they made adjustments, and things really seemed to work for the opposites-attracting couple. But there was one difference between him and Miranda that Steve couldn't ignore -- the difference in their bank accounts. When Miranda tried to buy Steve an expensive suit to wear to a party for her law firm, she bruised his ego too badly and their relationship was over.

Luckily for Miranda, she had a friend who could relate. Carrie also found herself with another broken heart when Mr. Big's work sent him off to Paris on a potentially long-term assignment. Big's nonchalant attitude over how this would impact their relationship made Carrie realize he still wasn't a top priority in her life. She broke up with him again, but not without throwing a Big Mac at his wall first. It was back to being single for her for the rest of the season.

Also single this season was Charlotte, who still couldn't find a man who fit her idea of what a perfect husband should be. Despite getting her hopes up every time, Charlotte couldn't even find a guy to make it into the next episode. Charlotte was still determined to get married, but the only man in New York with his mind on marriage at the end of this season was Mr. Big.

It didn't take long for Carrie's former love to move on. He came back from Paris with a new girlfriend -- beautiful, twenty-something Natasha, and their engagement was announced quickly. Carrie didn't understand how he was able to commit to Natasha but hadn't been able to with her. But in the season finale, Carrie stopped by his engagement party to ask him, in a scene inspired by the ending of The Way We Were. His answer was that things with Carrie had been too complicated, and life with Natasha was easier. Carrie walked away with a smile on her face, proud to be a complex woman, and ready to keep looking for a man who could handle her just the way she was.

New Characters We Met: Despite breaking up with Miranda, Steve Brady is a name that will keep popping up throughout the series. So will Natasha, aka the future Mrs. Big, aka "the stick figure with no soul."

Best Hookup: In the one of the show's most memorable guest star stunts, Carrie played a sexy game of Twister with Seth (played by Jon Bon Jovi) whom she met at her shrink's office.

Fashion Highlight: Charlotte's backless black satin "Don't look at the bride. Look at me!" bridesmaid dress.

Best Quote: While in bed with Seth, Carrie asked why he was in therapy. His answer: "I'm really f***ed up about women. After I sleep with them, I completely lose interest. What about you? What's your problem?" Carrie: "I pick the wrong men."

Coming next week: The Great Mr. Big vs. Aidan debate begins!