Michael Patrick King on ‘And Just Like That’ season 2, Aidan’s return and keeping audiences guessing
Season two of 'And Just Like That' will premiere on HBO Max this summer, but what can audiences expect from upcoming episodes? Show creator Michael Patrick King weighs in.
I should warn you that there are spoilers below but if you haven’t watched season one by now, I’m guessing you’re probably not going to. Either way, read on at your own risk…
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly recently, show creator Michael Patrick King revealed what the biggest blocker for season two has been so far… turns out, the Peloton effect is a very real thing. “This season, every time we wanted to use a product name, people were like, ‘And how are they gonna use it?’” he recalled, unable to stop himself from laughing. “We want [SJP] to wear Gucci. ‘How is she gonna wear it? Nothing bad’s gonna happen to our product, is it?’”
I think it’s fair to say that brands’ concerns are probably well-founded though… Big kicked the bucket after having a fatal heart attack while riding his Peloton bike, causing real-world Peloton stock to plummet and prompting urgent damage control within the company. Samantha Jones would not have been happy had she been handling their PR.
Keen to quell the public’s panic that their own stationary exercise bike would be the cause of their demise, Peloton’s in-house preventative cardiologist was quick to point out that it was most likely Mr Big’s “extravagant lifestyle” and penchant for cocktails, cigars and steaks that were actually to blame. King is unphased by it all. “I was on my Peloton yesterday. I’m alive! It was a story point.”
Aside from the obvious Peloton brand implications, Big’s death was monumental for fans because it hinted at the possibility that the Sex and the City characters we’ve come to know and love over the past 25 years, may not get the happily ever after we would like – something that fascinates King to no end. In fact, he welcomes both the good and the bad feedback. “It means we didn’t do the same thing. If we had tried to do Sex and the City now without any of the changes we made, it wouldn’t have been current in my mind. It wouldn’t have been anything to argue about. There wouldn’t have been a change to debate.”
Season two is “an address to the reaction to season one”, according to King. “If that was winter, this is spring”, as he puts it. “I didn’t see one tweet and go, ‘Oh my God, I’ve got to change everything,’” he clarifies, adding that it’s more about intuition. “It’s a zeitgeist feeling.”
So, what does that mean for upcoming episodes? In the very literal sense – “there’s sex and there’s city. There [are] so many restaurants and there’s so much New York. It’s really more city than I’ve ever seen in the show,” King admits. “When Sex and the City was good, we showed four individuals all experiencing different versions of the same question, which is, how do you fulfil yourself? That’s what we’re doing now with even more characters.”
Season two is a great big “feast of a story”, with different storylines acting as the entrées. One entrée revolves around Miranda and Che Diaz’s relationship – which to King, is like a “lemon meringue pie… tart and sweet and wrong, in a comedy way.” Aidan Shaw’s return is another big entrée.
King always knew he was going to kill Big in season one and he always knew that he was going to bring (a newly single) Aidan back in season two. “I felt very strongly about that. How, when he shows up, what happens is all part of the great fun and puzzle of writing a series, to somehow give people what they’re expecting and yet find ways to have people grow and still be that person.” The only other spoiler we know so far is that Carrie’s boss (and sometimes nemesis) Enid Frick will also return alongside Gloria Steinhem.
While the SATC reboot was not without its criticisms (or controversies!), the ratings speak for themselves and a highly successful first season cemented AJLT as HBO Max’s strongest debut to date – performing better than any other premiere for the platform. Production began on the second season in October 2022, and though we’re still waiting on a release date, filming has officially begun on the streets of NYC, and paparazzi shots are keeping us incredibly well-fed. Due to premiere on HBO Max this June, an Irirish release date has yet to be announced but hopefully it won’t be too long after that.
In the meantime, read more on what we can expect from Carrie and the gang to get up to here.