In ‘And Just Like That…’, the beloved character makes a brief but effective re-appearance. Cameo of the century? I’d argue yes.
Much has been made of the Samantha Jones-sized hole in And Just Like That…. The fan-favourite Sex and the City character, played incomparably by Kim Cattrall, has been famously absent from the series’s polarizing revival — and it’s a loss that weighs heavy throughout the show. But in the season 2 finale, for 74 glorious seconds, Samantha Jones made a momentous return. And it all comes down to what she was wearing.
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The scene in question finds Samantha phoning Carrie from across the pond. Sitting in the back of a chauffeured car on the streets of London, she’s sporting a silver lamé trench coat, a bright scarlet dress, chunky silver jewellery and a lime green Fendi First clutch. It’s an oeuvre so glamorous, so dazzling, so chic that I have no choice but to deem it the most memorable fashion moment of the season. In a show with pigeon purses and view-obstructing headpieces, that’s saying something. But allow me to explain.
You see, the magic of this ensemble lies in its logistics. For starters, Patricia Field — the costume designer behind SATC’s era-defining fashion legacy — returned solely to dress Cattrall for this one moment. Secondly, Samantha’s wearing red, which is a subtle nod to her character’s signature colour and fiery sensibilities. And finally, we only get to see her upper half, which re-affirms her noncommital charisma and somehow makes this image even more powerful.
In all its colour-blocking and statement accessorizing, the look communicates everything viewers love about this character: confidence, glitz, and unapologetic ambition. “I wanted to bring back Samantha Jones,” Field told Elle of crafting the costume. “I didn’t veer off and make some other image. [There] were a few adjustments, but nothing major.” Unlike Miranda’s watered-down wardrobe or Charlotte’s distracting over-embellishments, Samantha reappears just as we remember her. And thank God for that.
The thing is, while some aspects of Sex and the City aged poorly, Sam’s legacy is overwhelmingly one of acceptance. She took a fluid approach to sexuality. She never judged her friends (it’s not her style!). And as the oldest woman in the group, she rewrote the rules of who gets to be “sexy” on-screen. Even Kim Cattrall’s refusal to take part in And Just Like That… exudes Samantha Jones energy. The actor has long had a rumoured feud with some of her fellow cast mates, and the decision not to come back mirrors her uncompromising ethos on-screen.
Samantha knows who she is — and she dresses that way. With a penchant for sharp proportions, bright shades, and revealing cuts, the PR exec’s style was always an extension of her personality. Ultimately, her latest cameo is yet another example. It’s a look that says, “I don’t want to be in a situation for even an hour where I’m not enjoying myself.” It’s an outfit that oozes, “I love you, but I love me more.” It’s the uniform of someone with an enviable PR Rolodex and an indifference to the opinions about her. What she’s wearing is, in other words, the epitome of a perfect comeback look. A distant cousin of the revenge dress, comeback attire is an ensemble selected to remind the world of who you are. It can be brief. It may be subtle. But it reinstates the importance of your energy — even if for just a few moments.
On the call, Samantha pays her respects to the iconic apartment that Carrie has lived in throughout the series. “Thank you for everything,” she purrs on speakerphone, the jazzy Sex and the City soundtrack playing softly in the background. She bids Carrie a pithy “Ta and cheerio!” and goes on her merry way. Through this distinct sartorial serve and characteristically snappy dialogue, fans can finally feel closure from Samantha Jones. And true to her quit-witted style, it took just 74 seconds to get it.