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‘And Just Like That …’ Season 2 Episode 9 Recap: Budding Expectations

The first time Carrie started dating Aidan, back in Season 3 of “Sex and the City,” she found herself routinely waking up with a gasp in the middle of the night. Something felt off. Something felt wrong. But after scouring for whatever unchecked item on her to-do list was giving her this anxiety, she found that, in fact, she “hadn’t so much as missed a teeth cleaning.”

It was Aidan who was messing with her head. Carrie couldn’t relax because, for the first time, she was in a relationship where no one was, well, messing with her head. Unlike Big, who was the king of, as Carrie named it, the “seductive withholding dance,” Aidan was a good man, and he was good to her.

“It’s smooth sailing,” Carrie said of their relationship. “Nothing but calm seas, blue horizons as far as I can see.”

Fast forward to the present, when Carrie and Aidan are once again coupled up after a two-decade hiatus. Just like before, it’s smooth sailing. Everything is working. They just fit.

But this time around, while Carrie has never felt more certain that she is in the right relationship with the right man at the right time, it’s others who are having anxiety about it.

It began with Miranda, who in last week’s episode asked Carrie if she should “take a beat.” Carrie and Aidan went from zero to cohabitating at warp speed, and Miranda couldn’t help but worry.

Even though Carrie assures Miranda that the past isn’t repeating itself, you can still see the look of concern cross Miranda’s face, as well as Charlotte’s, when Carrie shows her friends the giant new apartment she is angling to buy in Gramercy Park. It has plenty of room for Aidan and his three sons, and most important, it is not her old place, in which Aidan won’t set foot. She tells her friends she is ready to sell it.

“Are you really that sure, Carrie?” Charlotte asks with distress on her face. But once again, Carrie sings her song. She is sure. She is ready. She is happy.

But the doubters keep on coming. Later, it is Aidan’s ex-wife, Kathy (Rosemarie DeWitt), who presents as a harbinger of heartbreak. “I know your history with Aidan,” Kathy says bluntly to Carrie. “You can’t hurt him again.”

“Of course you’ll hurt me,” Aidan tells Carrie when he finds out about that conversation. And he will hurt her, and things will get messy, but they will work it out. Aidan is just as sure as Carrie. Everything seems to be going right.

So, if the aim of this episode is to convince us, the audience, not to worry that Carrie and Aidan won’t make it work this time — and yet that our doubts are well-founded — well, it’s working.

And I hope that the writers, executives and everyone else involved at Max understand that if Aidan and Carrie fall apart in the final two episodes of this season, after all this building of trust — between them, and between them and us — that some of us (me!) will sink into a hole and perish.

Meanwhile, not everyone else is so self-assured in matters of the heart. For starters, Anthony has been having dinner, but not sex, with Giuseppe (Sebastiano Pigazzi), the young Italian poet who recently ended his brief stint as a Hot Fella.

Maybe it’s his pending divorce from Stanford Blatch (Willie Garson), or maybe it’s just that he can’t figure out what would make a fox like Giuseppe want someone like him. But for whatever reason, Anthony just can’t seem to relax and embrace it. It isn’t until Anthony confronts Giuseppe about what he believes is an obvious scheme to get a green card that he finds out Giuseppe already has dual citizenship. He really does just want to shag. Within moments, they do.

Nya, however, has absolutely no issue showing a younger man around her bedroom. She is reveling in hot, casual sex until a gut-punch of an Instagram post crosses her feed: a photo of her ex-husband, hugging a woman we can assume is the hat-wearing songwriter Nya caught him with before. And she is pregnant.

Nya, who ultimately ended things with Andre over not wanting to have his child, immediately kicks out her beau — don’t worry, he’s cool with it — so that she can stew over this alone.

It’s not the only unexpected pregnancy we get in this episode. Lisa, who has become borderline narcoleptic, falls asleep in her closet and nearly misses Herbert’s big campaign speech at his event at the Goldenblatts’. Lisa tells Herbert, just as he is about to make his remarks, that she is pregnant. It’s a plot twist that neither Herbert — nor, most likely, any of us — saw coming.

Maybe the most surprising and delightful development in the episode, though, is the coupling of young Brady Hobbes and Lily Goldenblatt. Is it just a spring fling, or could this be the start of “Sex and the City: The Next Generation”? Mostly I hope not, but considering this franchise clearly has no intention of stopping, you never know.

Things still taking up space in my brain

  • As infallible as Aidan is to me, personally, I have to ding him on this: He absolutely refuses to enter Carrie’s apartment, but when she tells him she is selling it, he tells her, “You don’t have to sell it for me.” Obviously she does?

  • I’m calling it right now: Seema is going to be engaged by the end of this season. It has already been established that some part of her aches to have at least one great love. It should also be noted that she has written off her new beau, Ravi (Armin Amiri), as not being “marriage material.” That’s meant to throw us off the scent, I think.

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