'AJLT...' Creator Says Carrie and Aidan Are 'Open for Business' and 'Both Single' When They Reunite in Season 2

The upcoming season of ‘And Just LikeThat…’ may give Carrie and Aidan fans the romantic ending they’v been hoping for!

Executive producer and creator Michael Patrick King spoke with Entertainment Weekly about the status of Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Aidan Shaw’s (John Corbett) relationship — among other juicy things fans can expect in season 2 this June.

via EW:

“I gotta tell you, it was a little dicey this summer,” he admits to EW, sitting in his lavish New York City apartment, one day after he and the cast celebrated the end of production with a wrap party in mid April.

It wasn’t the paparazzi — even though it seemed like those flashbulb buzzards would leak Sarah Jessica Parker’s latest Carrie Bradshaw fashions online faster than HBO could release an official image. No, it was the Peloton effect.

“This season, every time we wanted to use a product name, people were like, ‘And how are they gonna use it?'” King recalls, unable to stop himself from laughing. “We want [SJP] to wear Gucci. ‘How is she gonna wear it? Nothing bad’s gonna happen to our product, is it?'”

The concern stemmed from And Just Like That season 1, specifically when Chris Noth’s John James Preston/Mr. Big keeled over from a fatal heart attack after riding his Peloton bike. Real-world Peloton stocks dipped when the episode aired, sending the fitness company into crisis mode. Its own in-house preventative cardiologist even got on the horn to point out that the fictional Mr. Big’s “extravagant lifestyle” of cocktails, cigars, and steaks likely prompted such an event — not the Peloton itself.

Today, King is far enough removed from the situation to laugh it off. “Look, I was on my Peloton yesterday. I’m alive,” he says. “It was a story point!”

The seismic reaction to Big’s death was a telling sign for King at the time. For the past 25 years, Sex and the City fans formed an attachment to Carrie and Big, as well as Cynthia Nixon’s Miranda Hobbes and Kristin Davis’ Charlotte York. Anything new that disrupted the happy ending they had cataloged in their minds — and in the two SATC movies — could easily feel like a personal affront against their TV besties. King is fascinated by it all, and welcomes both the cheers and the jeers from his And Just Like That audience. “It means we didn’t do the same thing,” he says. “If we had tried to do Sex and the City now without any of the changes we made, it wouldn’t have been current in my mind. It wouldn’t have been anything to argue about. There wouldn’t have been a change to debate.”

Even so, the man was aware of the weekly discourse surrounding each season 1 episode as they aired. King believes, “A lot of season 2 is an address to the reaction to season 1 in my thought process. ‘Oh, it’s dark. Oh really? That’s necessary because the opposite of dark is light, so this [season] is light. And if that was winter, this is spring.'” He doesn’t mean a direct reaction to specific criticism. “I didn’t see one tweet and go, ‘Oh my God, I’ve got to change everything,'” he clarifies. “It’s a zeitgeist feeling.”

If season 1 was about death and grief, King says the sophomore season’s credo is, “Life is short, so live.” It’s like “when a friend goes through something difficult and then you’re relieved that they’re coming out of it and they feel like themselves again,” he explains. One could say the friend King is talking about is the show itself. The executive producer mentions And Just Like That is now returning to the ideas that made the original Sex and the City fun after such a dark period for Carrie.

In the literal sense, “There’s sex and there’s city… There’s so many restaurants and there’s so much New York. It’s really more city than I’ve ever seen in the show,” he says. “When Sex and the City was good, we showed four individuals all experiencing different versions of the same question, which is, how do you fulfill yourself? That’s what we’re doing now with even more characters.”

King describes season 2 as “a big feast of a story” with many different entrées. There’s Miranda’s arc with stand-up comic and podcaster Che Diaz (Sara Ramirez), another surprise lightning rod among the fandom from season 1. “The idea of Miranda in L.A. while Che does a pilot to me is like a lemon meringue pie. It’s so tart and sweet and wrong, in a comedy way,” King teases. “And yet [it’s] really interesting to remove somebody from a group and put them on their own island with some other character. They’re both trying to grow or be happy — and it’s substantial, it’s enough.”

Will the pilot take off for Che? “They’re back in New York at some point,” King promises. “Don’t worry, everybody. TV pilots are an iffy business.”

Another delicious dish involves the return of John Corbett as Aidan Shaw, one of the big loves of Carrie’s life. “It’s a big entrée in our feast,” King confirms of that arc.

“I personally knew I was killing Big in season 1. I knew that when I started and I felt very strongly about that,” King continues. “I started season 2 knowing I was bringing Aidan back, and I felt very strongly about that. How, when he shows up, what happens is all part of the great fun and puzzle of writing a series, to somehow give people what they’re expecting and yet find ways to have people grow and still be that person.”

The last time we saw Aidan was in the movie sequel Sex and the City 2. That fateful encounter in Abu Dhabi, complete with a torrid kiss, strongly hinted that Aidan’s marriage wasn’t on such firm ground. Is that a suggestion of how he comes back into Carrie’s life in And Just Like That? “Yes,” King says. “I would not make Carrie Bradshaw a home-wrecker. That’s the biggest leak I can give you. That’s not the story. The story is [they’re] open for business. They’re both single. You know how she’s single. You don’t know how Aidan’s single.”

Perhaps out of an abundance of caution, King quickly adds, “It had nothing to do with a Peloton bike, I can tell you that.”

Season 2 of And Just Like That… premieres on HBO Max this June.

Share This Post