The Carrie Diaries recap: 'Lie With Me' (season 1, episode 2)
Carrie steps it up to stave off Donna LaDonna's Sebastian seduction, but it's Carrie's purse that got the most play
Those “Goody Two Shoes” promos are quickly feeling moot, huh? Just two episodes in, and Carrie’s sort of becoming a sociopath — second only to li’l sis Dorrit, of course. Though fashionista Larissa was in a scant two scenes, it seems she’s really rubbing off on the impressionable Miss Bradshaw. How long can Carrie sustain her lies of omission and workday trips to the boroughs without a serious meltdown? Or do we even care that the show’s growing more unrealistic by the second when we’re getting our fill of fabulous hair, shirtless Sebastian, and Donna LaDonna shutdowns? I’m sure Tim will weigh in when he returns as your regular recapper next week, but for now I say keep ’em coming!
So, Sebastian was still totes into Carrie, despite a virtual house arrest sentence from her dad and the best attempts at Carrie-blocking by Ms. LaDonna. Believe you me, DLaD was giving the teen dream the full-court press, which included getting him stoned at the country club and sticking her head in his lap. “You make everything sound like a come-on,” he told her. “That because it is,” she purred. And that was even before she announced, “You know, I lost my virginity on this very bench.” Now, perhaps I’m looking at this in the wrong way, but were Ia guy, that would translate to, “Someone else’s testes have grazed the public space where you are sitting at this very moment.” That’s… sexy?
Either way, Mouse just happened to be at the club. She also happened to be cleaving to a universal distrust in men since her devirginator went MIA, so she borrowed the maitre d’s phone to call Carrie. It only took about three exchanges for Mouse to realize what panic she’d incited and start backpedaling. She advised Carrie to ask Sebastian about it the next school day, and he sort of fell into this fumbling trap, telling her vaguely that his night was “uneventful.” While not technically a lie, it looked bad when DLaD strutted up and presented Sebastian’s coat back to him like a trophy, adding in husky voice (while smugly staring at Carrie), “Thanks for warming me up.” Innuendo zing! To his credit, Sebastian apologized, and we saw that via flashback that he had rebuffed DLaD. He claimed he lied to Carrie for fear she’d judge him for smoking pot. She insisted they were fine, which was an actual lie. Thus, Carrie established a pattern of dishonesty and under-the-surface tension that would set her up nicely for womanhood and any future relationships.
But she wasn’t the only one nurturing delusions. Walt was doing his very best to avoid anything beyond kissing with Maggie, even resorting to the lowest of low excuses: self-respect. How dare he?! Maggie’s worked through her sexual frustration with thinly veiled digs and catty slams against Donna, such as, “We cannot let that fake-and-bake, big-boobed bitch win.” In the interest of dialogue alone, Walt, keep holding out!
NEXT: Carrie goes Down Under (the Manhattan Bridge Overpass)
Carrie was at work when Larissa, who wanted to use Carrie’s purse as the centerpiece of an Interview style spread, called from DUMBO to say the shoot had been moved to that day. So Carrie put her internship at risk and skedaddled off to Brooklyn to secure 15 minutes of fame for her DIY accessory. Glad those priorities are straight, girl! Actually, though, I’m not being that sarcastic — her internship (not to mention her hard-up, personal phone call-hating boss) seriously sucks. If I were given two women as role models — one a hard-up harpy with a soul-crushing job, another a kleptomaniac with a fabulous accent and access to safari animals, I’d choose Larissa’s every time too.
So Carrie delivered her purse to the shoot and spent a few minutes as the photo shoot’s de facto zebra wrangler (don’t ask) before realizing she needed to head back. Making perhaps her most questionable choice of the night, she left her one-of-a-kind purse in the hands of an unrepentant thief — not to mention near the mouths of a couple of camels from Radio City Music Hall. Regardless, Larissa gave her a token of good faith in the form of a one-off Dior scarf. As she swathed her protege in expensive silk, she also gave her a life tip: “Fake it ’til you make it.” Though it sounded more like a suggestion to take up compulsive lying, to me, Carrie is less cynical and vaguely interpreted the advice to be more self-confident. Either way, both the scarf and the pep talk came in handy when Carrie eluded trouble from her boss with a dose of moxy and by handing over the scarf. She claimed she’d found it in the bargain bin and that she thought her boss would look great in it on her date that night. The redemptive power of fashion at work, folks.
Back at school, Mouse had another run-in with Sebastian and DLaD, who was so smug that even Mouse got riled up enough to tell Carrie to make an immediate play for Sebastian. To do so, Carrie flaked on a pool date with Dorrit, who stormed home. Mr. Bradshaw headed to the pool to investigate and found Carrie and Sebastian getting wet and wild. Carrie was certain she’d be grounded forever, but Sebastian seemed to gain Mr. B’s respect when he introduced himself and demonstrated a firm handshake. Seemed being the key word. That night, Mr. B told Carrie she couldn’t see Sebastian because of some shady back story between himself and Sebastian’s dad that remains unclear. Carrie obeyed for about 12 minutes before lover boy came a-knockin’. She loaded up a double-barrel lie in order to keep both men in her life happy short-term, but it will inevitably blow up in her face — I’m guessing some time next week.
Speaking of ill-formed plans, Walt saw Carrie’s growing chutzpah and decided it was time to suck it up and do it with Maggie. But instead of waiting by the phone, she was cruising for police cruisers — or, more accurately, a certain six-packed young deputy driving the cruiser. After an emotionally unfulfilling backseat hook-up, she returned home to find Walt, who came clean that he didn’t love her “in that way.” It wasn’t a grand, glorious coming out by any means, but it was pretty much the only moment of tempered honesty in the episode, so… good?
The ep ended as Dorrit revealed to Carrie and Mouse that she’s even sketchier than we thought (she gets stoned and shoots bootleg movies in the cinema!). Maggie showed up in tears, and the four of them sat around a stack of PB&J crackers, the high school equivalent of SatC‘s coffee shop. And Mouse’s revealed her devirginator had come crawling back after he realized he couldn’t get sex from college girls. That last part is my cynical assumption, of course. Regardless, stay strong, Mouse! (Related note: I would like to amend Tim’s theory from last week, and suggest that Mouse is the Charlotte of the group. Agree or disagree?)
So, Carrie fans, did you think episode 2 was an improvement on the pilot? Or does it feel like this episode stalled the momentum? Is Sebastian worth all the rigmarole? Do you think Larissa would actually be better friends with Donna LaDonna? And what have we learned tonight? Lie, cheat, and be super sexually aggressive! Yep, this show is definitely set in the ’80s…