In 1998, Sex and the City took over HBO like a wrecking ball. We saw the fabulous relationship between four women and best friends, Carrie Bradshaw, Miranda Hobbes, Charlotte York, and Samantha Jones. Together, the four women take over New York City in all things love, fashion, and career. We saw Carrie and Big chase each other all around New York for 10 years. Samantha went from a maneater working for a man to a maneater who created her own brand. We saw Charlotte finally fulfill her dreams of being a mother. And we saw Miranda climb up the corporate ladder as a busy lawyer and mother.
It's been 15 years since Sex and the City ended, and we've seen a spinoff (The Carrie Diaries) and two movies. Fans of the show also can't help but compare characters and who outranks who. To follow suit, we're taking a look at 5 reasons why Carrie Bradshaw made the show and 5 reasons why Samantha Jones did it better.
10 CARRIE: SHE ALWAYS FOLLOWED HER HEART (EVEN WHEN IT LANDED HER IN HOT WATER)
One of the most honest parts about Sex and the City is the inside look at dating life in the big city. With so many beautiful people around and clubs that don't sleep, these women found it hard to keep a man, let alone like a man.
We've seen Carrie date—what seems like hundreds of men—around for years, but her three big loves were Aiden, Aleksandr Petrovsky, and Big. Throughout every new relationship, Carrie always turned back to Big. Even when she didn't want to, she knew there was this twisted, cosmic thing between her and Big. And she was right.
9 SAMANTHA: REMINDED US THAT EMBRACING YOUR SEXUALITY WAS TOTALLY ENCOURAGED
There's been an age-old perception that men can sleep around whenever they see fit, but women should be loyal to their men. Funny enough, Samantha (and even Carrie) laugh at that notion and make sexuality a regular part of their existence.
This kind of active mindset was inspirational to women (and viewers) everywhere who think sleeping around is a sport for men. A woman can just as easily find herself an adoring lover if she wanted one, and if she's not getting it from her partner, there should be no shame in ending that relationship and moving on to the next.
8 CARRIE: WE WERE ENVIOUS OF HER EYE FOR FASHION
Working as a writer for Vogue Magazine, Carrie got some pretty great perks from work. Putting perks aside, Carrie had an amazing eye for fashion and loved fashion as much as she loved Mr. Big. Walking into her closet was like walking into a daydream.
It didn't matter if Carrie was grabbing coffee with the girls or going out for a night on the town, she always looked amazing, pushing her style to the next level. While Samantha Jones and the other women also had an amazing eye for style, it was Carrie that really took home the prize.
7 SAMANTHA: SHE WAS A BOSS-LADY IN A MAN'S WORLD
When we first meet Samantha Jones, all we know is that she's a public relations executive. She works with high-end clients and gets a front-row seat at every major event in New York.
As the seasons go on, we learn that Samantha really is a woman in a man's world and has to set herself apart just to be taken seriously in the cut-throat PR industry in the Big Apple. We've seen her time and time again tell men off whenever they spoke to her in the wrong context. (And whether that confrontation led to sex just depended on her mood...)
6 CARRIE: SHE WAS ALWAYS THERE FOR HER FRIENDS
You could say Carrie was the nucleus of her friend group. She met all the girls individually before merging everyone together. When Miranda was alone on New Year's Eve after Steve left her, who took the subway and ran in heels to make it to her before midnight?
When Samantha learned she had Breast Cancer, who did she tell first? When Charlotte had bedroom issues with her first husband, Trey, who did she turn to first? Carrie, Carrie, and Carrie. Carrie isn't just a phenomenal writer and style guru; she's an amazing friend and even better listener.
5 SAMANTHA: HAVE THE COURAGE TO BRANCH OFF AND DO YOUR OWN THING
By the time her Sex and the City movies rolled around, we learn that Samantha created her own PR firm, and her office is exactly where you'd expect it: Time's Square. With most of the world following the popular path of marriage, mortgages, and babies, Samantha follows her own narrative and does what feels natural for her.
She never gets married, she never has children, she starts her own firm, and guess what? She's never been happier or more satisfied. The world is Samantha's oyster and she can do anything she wants.
4 CARRIE: HER VIEWS ON RELATIONSHIPS MADE EVERYONE RE-THINK THEIR OWN
After being in so many relationships and on so many dates, Carrie has her own column (ironically called "Sex and the City" in the New York Observer. It's here that Carrie talks about the everyday questions those dating around in the late '90s and early 2000s were having.
She was raw, she was truthful, and her column was a hit because of it. Hearing her thoughts as she wrote made every viewer rethink their own dating history and what they're looking for in a potential partner.
3 SAMANTHA: SHE ALWAYS STOOD UP FOR HERSELF
Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, and Charlotte have all had their moments of weakness where they felt too defeated to stand up for themselves. It's then that true friends step in. Remember when the girls plan a trip to Atlantic City to celebrate Charlotte's birthday, and Miranda gets bullied due to her size? The woman just gave birth to a baby and was having a great night out with friends; the last thing she was expecting was to be mocked. Thankfully, Miranda had her three best gals there who told that guy to get lost.
Samantha doesn't have too many weak moments and is so confident that even though she's upset, the other person would never know. She stands up for what she believes in and protects herself and her friends.
2 CARRIE: SHE REMINDED VIEWERS IT'S OKAY TO BE A WOAMN WHO'S NOT MARRIED OR DOESN'T WANT KIDS
Before Carrie and Big got married, she was perfectly okay with never getting married. In fact, since this would have been Big's third marriage, she didn't even think marriage was on the cards for Big.
Before their big day, however, Carrie reminded us that it was okay to be in a committed relationship without having a big wedding. She also normalized the fact that just because you're a woman, doesn't mean you need to have kids. And that's okay!
1 SAMANTHA: ALWAYS LOVE YOURSELF
We saw Samantha with a lot of great guys. We also saw her with a good amount of losers. No matter what though, Samantha always stayed true to herself.
If she felt like she was giving more than she was getting or was focusing too much on the idea of a relationship—rather than herself as a woman—she was out the door. Samantha gave us the courage and confidence to love ourselves and not needing a man to help us love ourselves.