From the moment Sex and the City took off, fans of the show seemed to collectively ask themselves, "Which character am I?" And even though the show has been off the air since 2004, it is still commonplace to speculate about where you would fit in with Carrie and co., sipping cosmopolitans and wearing 5-inch stilettos in downtown Manhattan. But it is undeniable that something has now shifted about the way we as women talk about the winsome foursome in the public sphere. I'm talking specifically about Miranda Hobbes, previously the most hated character in the show.
Not long ago, no one wanted to be the "Miranda" of the group. Admitting that you were seemed to risk the implication that you were dominant, irritable, sarcastic, and [insert another non-stereotypically-feminine adjective here]. And if you told someone else they were the "Miranda," you risked offending them. She was seen as the caustic one, the brutally honest one, the dreaded "career woman" who could not open herself up to true love and intimacy. That being said, public perception of her seems to have changed — drastically — for the better.
Now we have articles with headlines that read, "Why Miranda Was The Best Character In Sex And The City," and "10 Reasons Why Being More Miranda Hobbes and Less Carrie Bradshaw Will Get You Promoted," and even "Being Miranda Hobbes: Why Women Really Love Sex And The City."
What gives? Well, a lot has changed for women since the show went off the air. While the idea of girl power has been a thing for quite some time (thanks Spice Girls and Destiny's Child!), it was still considered taboo to call yourself a feminist in the '90s and early aughts. Now, we have Beyoncé performing onstage in awards shows with an illuminated "Feminist" display in all caps behind her. Feminism, once associated with those ugly-sounding adjectives ("dominant," "irritable," etc.) that were associated with Miranda, has officially hit the mainstream. And it's not going away anytime soon.
So, I couldn't help but wonder (sorry), is mainstream feminism making women like Miranda Hobbes more?
Well, let's look at the evidence. Today's mainstream feminism has a big focus on equal pay, career ascension, and breaking the glass ceilings of corporate culture. Think of books like Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg, TED Talk extraordinaire. Or #GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso, the former CEO of online retailer Nasty Gal. You would be hard-pressed to find a character on SATC that exemplified "leaning in" or "girl boss" more than Miranda. The general idea of women not holding themselves back career-wise or leadership-wise has sparked a much larger "sorry not sorry" movement, where women are asked to stop apologizing for everything, including their individual success. But Miranda was on it before it was cool.
Another huge issue of modern-day feminism is street harassment. Think of all the videos that have been posted trying to educate the public on what women endure on a regular basis in public. Miranda famously did not stand for being harassed by construction workers while minding her own business on the way to Blockbuster. She bravely put them in their place by loudly declaring that she needed to get laid, to which they shrunk in cowardice and admitted they were actually married. And that wasn't the only still-relevant feminist issue Miranda addressed.
Calling out sexism when she sees it? Miranda was on it. Taking on single motherhood and a full-time job at the same time? Miranda was up for the challenge. Scoffing at the idea of a prince coming to rescue her? That's her cue. The list goes on and on.
While people may have numerous reasons for liking or identifying with Miranda (heck, maybe they even liked her from the beginning), I think it is safe to say that modern-day feminism definitely plays a role in women beginning to warm up to the character. Before it was a trend, before all the celebs began claiming the title, Miranda was making sure her voice was heard — and that is something all women can get behind.