In the fifth episode of the Sex And The City reboot And Just Like That, Miranda Hobbes finally has her queer, late-in-life awakening with Che Diaz – and it’s inspiring to see her live her authentic truth.
Ever since the trailer was released for the much-hyped Sex And The City reboot series, And Just Like That, sharp-eyed fans and members of the LGBTQ+ community, myself included, have been wondering the same thing: will Miranda Hobbes explore her sexuality?
To me, the clues in the trailer alone seemed conclusive. There was the intense eye contact between Miranda and Che Diaz, the queer and non-binary podcaster and standup comedian played by Sara Ramirez. There was Carrie’s cryptic voiceover about changes, reinvention, and life’s little (or Big) surprises. In the name of journalism, I even paused the trailer frame-by-frame. What did I discover? Only a glimpse of Miranda hanging out in a gay club, surrounded by several other queer people.
In pursuit of further evidence, I scoured the internet for interviews with members of the cast and crew. Speaking to TV Line, writer Julie Rottenberg confirmed that Miranda is feeling “stagnant in her life” and that this season is “all about change for her”.
Showrunner Michael Patrick King, meanwhile, reiterated that Miranda is feeling “trapped” at this stage in her life and that the new series is endeavouring to be “as bold as possible”.
“The series has always been bold, always,” he explained. “Samantha had a lesbian relationship with Sônia Braga for, like, four episodes. I mean, it’s not new to explore sexuality.”
On the subject of Che Diaz, King also acknowledged that the connection between the characters is hard to miss. “They’re a vibration,” he continued. “And Che Diaz is an incredibly strong, charismatic vibration as played by Sara Ramirez. I mean, everyone’s drawn to [them].”
When the reboot finally landed on our TV screens back in November, I was presented with a proper opportunity to analyse the interactions. In the second episode of the series, Little Black Dress, Miranda caught her teenage son Brady smoking outside with Che after the funeral service for Big. After squaring up to Che and promising to rip their head off – a moment in which I couldn’t tell if the pair were going to fight or snog – they were then re-introduced by Carrie. Miranda looked unusually bashful, Che looked Miranda up and down, and a spark was kindled between the two.
Come the third episode, and things were well and truly heating up. At Che’s comedy show, Miranda seemed profoundly moved by Che’s stories about embracing change, and after sticking around for the VIP afterparty, the pair had an intimate encounter where Che shotgunned weed smoke into Miranda’s mouth.
It turns out, reader, that I was wrong to doubt myself. For in the fifth episode of And Just Like That, we find out that Miranda Hobbes’ new direction does indeed lead to a queer reckoning.
It all begins after Carrie’s hip operation, when Che calls by the hospital with a care package. Unfortunately Carrie’s indisposed on the toilet – so Miranda goes to meet Che in the canteen instead.
As they sit eating Che’s homemade food, Che, in an uncharacteristic moment of vulnerability, opens up to Miranda about the struggles they once had with their identity. Che stares deep into Miranda’s soul, as if willing her to make a confession of her own – but all Miranda can manage is that she quit her high-flying job in law because she felt trapped.
Later, though, the pair encounter one another again when Che calls around to Carrie’s apartment. Miranda, coincidentally, is taking care of Carrie that afternoon, and lets Che up to the apartment where they exchange a flirtatious greeting.
It turns out that Che’s get-well-soon gift is tequila – but seeing as Carrie is napping, Miranda invites Che to take shots with her instead. Before long, both of them are intoxicated – by the alcohol and each other’s company – and when Miranda asks Che to shotgun her again, Che starts kissing Miranda’s neck.
Next thing we know, Miranda and Che start having sex in the kitchen and Miranda’s telling Che “that was the best feeling I’ve ever had in my life”. The two share a passionate kiss before Che leaves for their gig, telling Miranda to “DM me if you wanna chill again soon”.
In my personal opinion, the scene is hot as hell. But I know that many diehard SATC fans won’t be pleased with Miranda’s not-so-secret liaison. There are a lot of people gunning for Miranda and Steve to stay strong in the reboot, which is further complicated by Miranda’s admission to Carrie later in the episode that actually, she’s been desperately unhappy in her marriage to Steve for a very long time.
Obviously, we don’t quite know yet how Miranda’s encounter with Che will affect her relationship with Steve, nor do we know whether she’ll come out, or identify as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. It could literally be a one-time thing in episode five of And Just Like That that I’ll be replaying for the next year.
But whatever the case may be, Miranda’s queer romance is a major step forward for representation. It would be easy for the SATC writers to play it safe and keep Miranda on the straight and narrow with Steve. But to do so, in my opinion, would be disingenuous. In 2004, the same year that Sex And The City ended, Cynthia Nixon began dating Christine Marinoni, a prominent LGBTQ+ rights and education advocate. In 2012, the pair married, and last year, Nixon came out as queer.
“Falling in love with my wife was one of the great delights and surprises of my life, but it didn’t seem like I became a whole new person, or like some door had been unlocked,” she told Attitude. “It was like: ‘I have fallen in love with different people in my life and they’ve all been men before. Now this is a woman and she is amazing.’”
Not only does Miranda’s storyline mirror aspects of Nixon’s own journey with her sexuality, but it also provides valuable representation for older lesbian, bisexual and queer women. Plenty of people come out later in life – we just rarely see their stories depicted on screen.
We’ll have to keep watching to find out how Miranda’s queer storyline evolves through the series, of course, and you can bet that I’ll be here for more recaps in the following weeks. But for now, I’m revelling in the experience of watching everyone’s beloved no-bullshit lawyer live her authentic truth.
Christobel Hastings is Stylist's Entertainment Editor whose specialist interests include pop culture, LGBTQ+ identity and lore.