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As ‘Sex and the City’ Ages, Some Find the Cosmo Glass Half-Empty

WorldAs ‘Sex and the City’ Ages, Some Find the Cosmo Glass Half-Empty

Most weeks, hundreds of people board a “Sex and the City” themed bus in Manhattan that takes them to the show’s most recognizable sites: Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment, her favorite brunch spot, a sex shop in the West Village. The tour usually ends with — what else? — a Cosmopolitan.

“It never gets old,” said Georgette Blau, the owner of On Location Tours. It’s a three-and-a-half-hour entry into an aspirational world many of the riders had been watching for decades, she said.

Twenty years since the series finale of “Sex and the City” aired, a new generation of television watchers has grown into adulthood. After all of the episodes were released on Netflix this month, media watchers wondered how the show — and Carrie’s behavior — might hold up for Gen Z.

Would they be able to handle the occasional raunchiness of the show, the sometimes toxic relationships? Were the references outdated? “Can Gen Z Even Handle Sex and the City?” Vanity Fair asked. (For its part, Gen Z seems to vacillate between being uninterested and lightly appalled about what they consider to be a period piece.)

The show had a very different effect on its longtime fans, many of them a generation or two older. When it aired, “Sex and the City” changed the conversation around how women dated, developed friendships and moved about the world in their 30s and 40s.

Even if some of the show’s character arcs aged poorly, many of its original fans still relate to Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda, no matter how unrealistic it may have been to live on the Upper East Side with a walk-in closet full of Manolo Blahniks on the salary of a weekly newspaper columnist.

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