30 TV Shows Like Sex and the City If You Couldn't Help But Wonder What to Watch Next
Sex and the City is not a show you get over and move past – if you loved it at any time, you know that it’s always good for a rewatch, outdated early 2000s references be damned. Fortunately for all of us, HBO just gave us the revival we’ve been desperately asking for since the last movie dropped more than a decade ago. And Just Like That has reignited our love for the fancy, fashionable ladies of NYC (even if we’re still distraught over Kim Cattrall’s lack of participation in the show).
But if you’ve still got a soft spot in your soul for the OG Sex and the City (because we do, too), you don’t have to keep firing up HBO Max to watch the show day in and day out. There are several TV shows out there that can quench some of your nostalgia for more SATC. Here are 30 series that follow in the footsteps of Carrie and the girls that you can watch now while you enjoy new episodes of And Just Like That. Whether you see yourself as a Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, or Samantha, there’s a show on this list that will fit you as well as your favorite pair of Manolos.
– Additional reporting by Shannon Vestal Robson
Shows Like Sex and the City: Younger
This TV Land gem has a silly gimmick – Liza (Sutton Foster) is 40, but pretending to be in her 20s to make it in the NYC publishing world. But at its heart, the show is about her love life (with a sexy younger man and a sexy man her own age), and her close female friendships. Set against the New York City backdrop, this show is full of fun shenanigans and truths about getting older and pursuing your dreams. Another line it has to Sex and the City? Iconic costume designer Pat Field is now working on Younger.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Insecure
In this HBO offering, Issa is a twenty-something in a city (this time, it’s LA) trying to figure it all out. But the main through-line is Issa’s relationship with her BFF Molly, which is more refreshing than even seeing either of them date (which they do too, of course). Like Sex and the City, this show is full of some absolutely hilarious situations, and it also tackles so many different types of relationships, as well as the personal struggle of growing up and figuring out who you are. Be prepared: This show will make you want to call your best friend.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Girlfriends' Guide to Divorce
Four friends, stylish clothes, and tons of love problems: Girlfriends’ Guide is probably the closest thing on TV to Sex and the City. It’s more about the post-happily-ever-after (see the “divorce” in the name), but there’s still lots of dating, and of course, a focus on the importance of the female friendships. Just like SATC, this show will make you want to put on your most daring outfit, call up your girlfriends, and take on whatever life throws at you. It shows that even though life has a way of throwing you curveballs, you can handle anything with the right women at your side.
Shows Like Sex and the City: You're the Worst
If Samantha was always your favorite character, You’re the Worst should be on your watchlist. On the raunchier, sexier side, the show has a romantic heart with the development of its central couple, Jimmy and Gretchen, but the friendships are nearly as developed as the romance. Just like Sex and the City, You’re the Worst has a unique take on friendship that isn’t always shown on TV, and it emphasises how important friendship relationships are in our lives. Sure, everyone is born into certain families, but it’s the families you decide to make on your own that can truly change your life.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Difficult People
If watching dating foibles is less appealing to you but you still want a half-hour of edgy, pop-culture comedy, Hulu’s Difficult People will definitely be your jam. Billy and Julie are BFFs, and even though they date other people (and Julie has a very serious boyfriend), their friendship is the beautiful relationship you’ll love watching – especially if you also enjoy being sour and making fun of people, places, and things with your best friend. You’ll wish you were sitting at the bar right next to them, dishing on the hilarious thing that happened to you today and making fun of the couples around you.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Girls
Sure, Girls may have come to an end, but it’s not too late to get into the show. Though it’s no carbon copy of Sex and the City, it is a direct descendant. Hannah and her friends are younger than Carrie and hers, but the relationship problems are just as intense, and the NYC setting is Brooklyn. Clearly, SATC‘s DNA is in this series. It may not be as candy-coloured, but it’s a little more real. Plus, if you’re still on the fence, know that Adam Driver can be seen in this series, which might be the motivation you need to press play.
Shows Like Sex and the City: The Mindy Project
Mindy Lahiri’s life evolves quite a bit throughout this series, moving from sexy single girl to sexy single mom, and as the show progresses it doesn’t lose any of its sultry fun – Mindy still dates in New York, and now she’s got a kid, and her career is even hotter. Oh, and she still has a closet that would make Carrie Bradshaw jealous. You can always count on Mindy Kaling to give you a good laugh and some thought-provoking episodes, so there’s never a bad time to enjoy some of this series. Pour yourself a cup of tea or your favourite glass of wine, and snuggle up with this gem.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Divorce
There are pretty obvious reasons why Sarah Jessica Parker’s recent HBO comedy is included on this list. Though Parker has made it clear that her character, Frances, is not Carrie Bradshaw, there are plenty of other reasons her new show would appeal to SATC superfans, namely its deep dive into the complexities of relationships. It’s fun to see SJP playing a different, though related, role, and of course the fashion might not be Carrie Bradshaw-level, but it also doesn’t disappoint (who doesn’t love a good coat?). If you want something a little bit more serious than the usual SATC vibe, check this out.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Being Mary Jane
Mary Jane (Gabrielle Union) seemingly has it all. She’s a beautiful, high-powered woman with a great job, money to spare, a wardrobe anyone would be envious of, and a solid head on her shoulders. But despite looking on the outside like everything is perfect, Mary Jane knows on the inside that it is anything but. She wants more, and she has to look to the people and places around her to find what’s missing. Mary Jane could easily be a character on Sex and the City with her strong sense of self and flashy life, which is why Being Mary Jane is a seamless transition from SATC.
Shows Like Sex and the City: The Bold Type
Much like Sex and the City, The Bold Type centres on a group of vivacious, charismatic women. The three women at the forefront of this show – Jane (Katie Stevens), Kat (Aisha Dee), and Sutton (Meghann Fahy) – meet while working in media and grow together as friends and professionals in their field. Along the way, the show brings up very real concerns that women go through with their health and their careers, never shying away from tough topics. And just like Sex and the City, the show takes place in New York and prominently features sex as practically its own character.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Broad City
Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer star as a lovably wacky pair of friends just trying to get by in New York City. Starring these two funny ladies, this show is as hilarious as it is relatable – even if you’ve never been to New York, you’ll still understand the stumbling roadblocks the women come to day in and day out. This show is a fun opposing view of New York from SATC as it’s decidedly less glamorous, but the leading women of both shows will still give you all the same vibes that make you want to champion most everything you do.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Dead to Me
Dead to Me is decidedly darker than Sex and the City, but it’s still a show about women and friendship. The dark humour between Jen (Christina Applegate) and Judy (Linda Cardellini) is unmatched by many other shows you’ll see. The two find solace in each other among tragedy, but because nothing can be easy, there’s also betrayal and pain. Behind the humour is a story about two women just searching for someone to be there for them when it feels like no one else is. The friendship between Jen and Judy will ring true for Sex and the City fans who can’t get enough of the fab four.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Emily in Paris
Emily in Paris may be an over-the-top, exaggerated look at a young professional moving to Paris to work in social media, but alas, it’s still a fun show. Emily (Lily Collins) finds herself with the chance at a brand new job in Paris, so she uproots her life to take it. Though she ruffles some feathers with her new co-workers, she doggedly proves herself to be knowledgable about social media. Along the way, she has a few fun romps with attractive men and makes some friends. At the core of this show, though, are strong women who aren’t afraid to go after what they want – just like the women of Sex and the City.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Girlfriends
At its core, Girlfriends is a hilariously relatable show about a group of women who are there for each other through thick and thin. Sound familiar? Each woman may come from a different place than everyone else and they all may be on differing paths, but that won’t stop them from supporting their friends and calling them out when necessary – as best friends do. For an ensemble show about female friends that you totally want to be a part of this is a great show to check out after you’ve watched all of SATC. And if you’re still on the fence, we have three words to convince you: Tracee Ellis Ross.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Girlboss
Most of what you need to know about Girlboss is in the show’s title. The series is based on the real-life creation of Sophia Amoruso’s clothing business that eventually became Nasty Gal (and beyond). Britt Robertson plays Sophia Marlowe, the fictional character based on Amoruso, who shows her determination and grit as she starts altering clothes, designing clothes, and reselling them all to create a business of her own. Sex and the City fans will appreciate the deep appreciation of fashion in this show – sure, maybe it’s not designer, but it’s designed – along with the strong woman at the centre of it all.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Gossip Girl
Gossip Girl feels a lot like a high-school version of Sex and the City. The show about Manhattan’s most elite teenagers is chock-full of sex, lies, deceit, drama, and every other high and low you can imagine the richest people of New York would experience. Though there is a revolving door of characters in the show, at the forefront of it all are Blair (Leighton Meester) and Serena (Blake Lively) who go from besties to enemies to frenemies and back again. New York City itself plays a huge role in this show, much like Sex and the City, and viewers can see plenty of overlap between the two settings.
Shows Like Sex and the City: The Good Wife
The Good Wife is full to the brim with strong women. Alicia (Julianna Margulies) is a lawyer hellbent on proving herself to her firm after taking years off to be a mom. The whip-smart woman goes toe to toe with anyone who dares to challenge her in court or in life. Along with her are Kalinda (Archie Panjabi) and Diane (Christine Baranski), two women she works with who are just as tough as she is. They’re a group of strong, badass women much like the heroines of Sex and the City that fans of the show will no doubt enjoy.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Grace and Frankie
Grace (Jane Fonda) and Frankie (Lily Tomlin) may have once been enemies, but when their husbands decide they want to be with each other instead of their wives, the wives decide to set their differences aside to forge a friendship that’s been brewing for years. The result is a hilarious show about women of a certain age who have found themselves in a position they never thought they’d be in at this stage in their lives: starting over. But their friendship only continues to grow as they navigate life as newly single women leaning on each other for support through it all.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Lipstick Jungle
Lipstick Jungle is the epitome of New York power women doing it all and doing it fabulously. But that also means they’re messing up left and right, because no one is perfect. Whether it’s sleeping with someone they absolutely shouldn’t be or trying (and failing) to get their career on the right track, these women are working through it all. And as they do, they stand by one another to cheer the others on through their triumphs and hand over Kleenex when things suck. These women may be intimidating to those around them, but to viewers, they’re the ones you just want to be friends with.
Shows Like Sex and the City: The L Word
If you’re a Sex and the City fan looking for a new show that puts heavy emphasis on the sex and relationships aspect of the show, try The L Word. The ensemble show features a number of characters who are lesbian and bisexual and just trying to navigate their sex lives. With that comes questioning their sexuality, sleeping around, falling in love, and everything else that goes into trying to figure out who you are and who you want to be with. It’s an collaborative show that will give you a little more flair for the dramatic after you’ve finished SATC.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Mom
Dealing with any parent can be tricky, which Christy (Anna Fairs) keenly understands about her own relationship with her overbearing recovering alcoholic mother Bonnie (Allison Janney). Single mom Christy is just trying to make ends meet and raise her kinds to be normal, functioning humans when her mom swoops in and shakes things up. The two have a push-and-pull relationship like so many mothers and children. Of course, Bonnie just wants the best for Christy, even if it doesn’t always seem that way. Their relationship ebbs and flows, just like some of the turbulent relationships in Sex and the City.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Shrill
In Shrill, Annie (Aidy Bryant) is a woman who’s dealing with a lot. She’s struggling to properly love herself, to shine at work, and to excel in her everyday life. But like so many shows with women as lead characters, she works her way through her issues and overcomes her struggles. Though she starts as a cowering journalist who just wants her big break, she eventually realizes she’s so much more than she once thought. And beyond work, Annie realises she’s a lot stronger than she used to think and that she deserves all the good things life has to offer.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Sweetbitter
Based on the novel of the same name by Stephanie Danler, Sweetbitter shows a slightly different take on NYC than what you’ll see in Sex and the City. Tess (Ella Purnell) is a young women with a big dream to move to New York, and she does just that. She shows up bright eyed and excited, but with no friends at her side. As she settles into a job in the restaurant industry, though, she starts to build the world she’s always wanted. For a compelling show with the hustle and bustle of New York City as the background, check this one out.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Ugly Betty
At the start, Betty (America Ferrera) is just another starry-eyed journalist with questionable style who wants to have a career in New York City. Despite her visible shortcomings, she lands a highly coveted job at “Mode” magazine and slowly but surely wins over everyone with her charm, talent, and determination. Like the women of Sex and the City, she’s passionate about what she loves and believes in and can win people over with her wit and determination. Yet another show with a strong female central character, Ugly Betty is a comedic yet relatable series that SATC fans will enjoy watching.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Golden Girls
We’re calling it right now: Golden Girls is the Sex and the City ladies in 30 years. Four women of a certain age find themselves living together in Miami, quickly becoming friends – practically family. There’s Dorothy (Bea Arthur), a divorcée with the driest of dry humour; her mom Sophia (Estelle Getty), a feisty Italian woman always on her daughter’s back about something; Rose (Betty White), a simple-minded widow with endless stories about living in St. Olaf, Minnesota; and Blanche (Rue McClanahan), also a widow who’s as frisky as frisky gets. Despite all coming from completely different walks of life, the four can always bond over a slice of cheesecake and sharing their twilight years together.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Friends
There’s a short list of New York-centric shows that are iconic, and Friends is one of them (along with Sex and the City, of course). For a similar group of friends that you can’t help but root for as they go through the ups and downs of growing up and moving through life in Manhattan, Friends is the only way to go. Over the course of 10 years and 10 seasons, these six friends fall in love, get married, and make you laugh along the way. As perhaps one of the most memorable and quotable shows of all time, it’s a must-watch for any Sex and the City fan who wants another show set in the Big Apple.
Shows Like Sex and the City: The Carrie Diaries
OK, so this is truly Sex and the City before it was Sex and the City. The prequel to the show features a teenage Carrie Bradshaw (AnnaSophia Robb) who just wants to get to the big city of New York. She lands an internship that gets her there, but it’s not nearly as smooth sailing as she imagined it would be. And of course, like any teenager, there are some fights and heartbreaks – most notably with hot guy Sebastian (Austin Butler). The charming show is a must-see for SATC fans who want a glimpse at Carrie before she was big-city Carrie.
Shows Like Sex and the City: Desperate Housewives
Talk about drama, drama, drama. The beauty of this show is in all the cracks in the facade that the four main characters are hiding behind. The strong female characters – played by Marcia Cross, Felicity Huffman, Eva Longoria, and Teri Hatcher – all look like they lead beautifully perfect lives, but you know not everything is what it seems! Wisteria Lane is full of lies, backstabbing, betrayal, as well as steamy relationships and hot hookups. If the ladies of Sex and the City moved out to the ‘burbs, Desperate Housewives would pretty much be the resulting show, we think.