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HBO and the ‘Sex and the City’ Production Team Were At Odds Over Carrie and Mr. Big’s Affair



Carrie Bradshaw and Mr. Big’s season 3 affair is among the most controversial Sex and the City storylines ever. While the storyline is controversial, most fans agree that the season 3 episodes featuring the couple’s affair and its eventual fallout are among the show’s best. The entire storyline almost didn’t happen. HBO was originally against the idea. 

HBO didn’t like the idea of Carrie and Mr. Big’s affair 

When the team behind Sex and the City came up with the idea for Mr. Big and Carrie’s affair, they ran the storyline past HBO executives. There was far more pushback than they expected, revealed Amy Sohn in her book Sex and the City: Kiss and Tell. According to the book, HBO was completely against the idea of Carrie and Big engaging in an affair, but the team behind the series sold them on the storyline. 

According to the author, HBO was concerned that the affair was too controversial and painted the couple too negatively. The Sex and the City writing team was known for pushing boundaries and depicting things that were seen as a bit uncomfortable. Eventually, HBO relented, and the affair storyline was a major focal point of season 3. 

How long did the affair last? 

Sex and the City never focused much on the passage of time. In fact, the series was shot in “perpetual spring,” and the crew was careful to avoid mentioning most holidays. While there were a few time markers sprinkled throughout the series, for the most part, it wasn’t easy to ascertain how much time passed between different events. 

Carrie and Mr. Big’s affair was an exception to that rule. It’s one of the easiest storylines to set a timeline for. We know that Carrie and Mr. Big met up at a furniture show. While it’s never mentioned, the New Designers Showcase was likely supposed to occur during Design Week, which generally happens in May. The actual affair didn’t start immediately, though. By the time things really kicked off, New York City was likely heading into the early days of summer. A bit later, when Carrie and Mr. Big lose Aidan Shaw’s dog, she is dressed in shorts, and he is wearing a short sleeve shirt, which indicates the affair flowed through the spring and into the official summer months. 

Natasha caught Carrie in her apartment in the summer, too. Carrie also admits to Miranda that the affair was going on for atleast three weeks. She didn’t end it immediately afterward, though. In total, Carrie and Mr. Big’s affair storyline lasted for about a month to six weeks. It spanned roughly five episodes


Carrie and Mr. Big’s affair resulted in Mr. Big’s second divorce. It also ended Carrie and Aidan’s relationship, although they would get back together and break up again the following season. Aidan and Carrie will get another chance at love in And Just Like That… season 2, the Max reboot of Sex and the City. Season 2 of the series premieres on June 22. 

Source: Cheat Sheet

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