This is WATCH THE WATCH, a series uncovering the most iconic watches seen on screen. From cult classics to new releases, we explore the cinematic presence behind the cameras. In this week’s edition, we unpick the trailer from yet another And Just Like That teaser, featuring Mr Big sporting a Jacob & Co. watch.
It’s been 23 years since Carrie Bradshaw was looking for love. Real love. Ridiculous, inconvenient, consuming, can’t-live-without-each-other love and in December last year, an announcement marked the return of Bradshaw and her stylish triage of Miranda Hobbs, Charlotte York, but sadly no Samantha Jones.
Met with swathes of criticism, both anticipation and resistance given the history of the show’s reductive stereotyping towards actors of color, and its failing that, in a show about and for women, the narrative exists around an obsession with men. While the 94 episodes and two films thereafter document the miscellaneous female experiences, a modern viewing of the show eclipses any feminist undertones on offer, given the series’ long-standing message that there is more to life than getting married and settling down, when in fact, all four women do just that.
While the show was amongst the first of its time to portray women on screen who had their fun, felt sexually liberated and worked hard, its legacy thawed into re-runs, particularly during lockdown and Instagram accounts paying homage to Carrie’s never-ending wardrobe.
A promised return, set to air later this month, And Just Like That takes its title from Bradshaw’s hackneyed phrase, spoken during those epiphanies while laboring over her laptop. The newest iteration of the Manhattan ensemble is reported to update its previous race and sexual politics, in attempt to address its history of marginalization.
So what’s it all about and when does it come out? According to HBO Max, the new iteration of this Manhattan circle will follow Carrie, Miranda and Charlotte as they reprise their roles and “navigate the journey from the complicated reality of life and friendship in their 30s to the even more complicated reality of life and friendship in their 50s.”
In an interview with Vanity Fair, Sarah Jessica Parker shares the development their lives have taken since we last saw them on our screen. “I think that Cynthia, Kristin, and I are all excited about the time that has passed. You know, who are they in this world now? Have they adapted? What part have they played? Where have they fallen short as women, as friends, and how are they finding their way? Did they move with momentum? Are they like some people who are confused, threatened, nervous [by what’s happening in the world]? I’m so curious and excited to see how the writers imagine these women today.”
Dropping another trailer this week, with just five days to go until the premier on December 9, what do we know so far? Well, it looks like the subway is finally an accepted mode of public transport, there’s less of a Carrie voiceover according to the show’s producer, accommodating a broader narrative for the women on screen, and Mr Big is wearing a hefty Jacob & Co. watch.
Much like the man himself, John-James Preston’s job has always been somewhat mysterious, but seeing Chris Noth’s return to the screen, we couldn’t help but notice the model on his wrist. That’s right, we’re not talking about Carrie’s closet for one. Lest we forget the Rolex Datejust gifted by Carrier in SATC2, but it seems Mr Big has opted for more experimental modes of haute horology for the reboot with Jacob & Co.’s Epic X Watch.
For Jacob & Co. zealots, there’s no emphasis on doing things by halves. The louder, the more spectacular, the more Jacob & Co. So what constitutes a more everyday solution? Perhaps the Epic X collection stands a fair chance. A skeletonized dial exposes 158 components, in a 44mm diameter. Crafted in a titanium case, depicting strength and resistance to corrosion, the ‘X’ in the model name makes itself known from the bezel to lugs in an arachnid fashion.
Designed by French watchmaker Benjamin Muller who trained in watchmaking, jewellery, design and creation, the case of the Epic X model approached the watch with a similar attitude to that of his own designs for M.Benjamin, combining bold designs with delicate movements. Another distinctive feature of the model is the perforated strap with hexagonal cuts, opening up the strap for the wearer, to increase comfort of the wearer. For all of its parts, this Jacob & Co model is a beacon of transparency, laying bare the foundations for all to see – well, for anyone that will pay $20,000 for the model. It seems unexpected for Mr Big’s character, but perhaps its a signal of a more relaxed and inviting Mr Big. While we’re yet to decipher the silent privileges these characters afford, from Carrie’s continuous ownership of multiple properties to this very watch, we just couldn’t help but wonder, can a show adapt its archetypal characters to meet the changing times? And will they reprise the very genesis of it all: frankness of sex talk and insistence on female subjectivity? See you on the other side.