Judging A Book By Its Cover: The Carrie Diaries

The CW is wiping away the lipstick mark left behind by Gossip Girl's XOXO sign-off and replacing it with orange eyeshadow and blonde curls. The Carrie Diaries is set to be unlocked in January, with 19-year-old AnnaSophia Robb stepping into Sarah Jessica Parker's Manolo Blahniks to play Carrie Bradshaw, falling in love with her first Mr. Big--Manhattan--in 1984.

With nothing to go on but a couple of glossy teaser trailers and some press pics, let's pre-emptively judge The Carrie Diaries by its proverbial designer cover, shall we?

So, this is supposed to be Carrie Bradshaw circa 1984, is it? I don't think so. Even the abysmal Sex And The City 2 got Carrie's '80s look about right, managing to capture how an SATC fan might imagine she'd look back then: a little like Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction and not Serena Van Der Woodsen in Gossip Girl.

With the possible exception of editor Larissa Loughton, who promisingly sports hot pink earrings and glittered lapels in the trailer, anyone hoping for some well-researched, meticulously constructed, larger-than-life fashion don'ts will probably be more disappointed than Samantha Jones when she met that hot priest. I mean, I wore more embarrassing and dated outfits back in 2000 than what the CW's version of Carrie wore in 1984. A metallic hanky top with beaded fringing and Spice Girls platforms immediately come to mind--yep, I was a slave to fashion at the turn of the millennium and, incidentally, Sarah Jessica Parker was one of my idols.

However, we have to face facts that this show's target demographic was (shock, horror) probably too young to watch SATC the first time 'round and--brace yourselves--most weren't even born in the '80s. This big moment in time is instead glossed over and given the Gossip Girl treatment: exceptionally slick and distinctly 2010s. With a lick of colorful eyeshadow here and some paint splashes there, the '80s seems to give The Carrie Diaries a retro style quirk and not much else. Even the guy in it is hot in a very 2012 way: no stonewash denim, black leather jacket, or mullet in sight.

Of course, I could be wrong. After all, I'm only going by what I've seen in the teaser trailer. In fact, I want to be proven wrong. Perhaps the show will have a lot to say about coming of age, social attitudes and, of course, sex in the '80s. Meh, who am I kidding? All I can say is that, even though her absence from the trailer tells us otherwise, Samantha Jones had better show up. She's in the book. Honest! I know, because I've read both it and the sequel, Summer In The City (Miranda's in that one, too). I've read them in eager preparation because this 31-year-old will definitely be tuning in.

However, I can pretty much be assured that Samantha won't look anything like this:

And Miranda Hobbes won't have hair like this:


The Carrie Diaries premieres on January 14, 2013 on the CW.

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