Does The Timeline In And Just Like That Make *Any* Sense?
TV series are not always known for their dedication to realistic details. People who follow the Marvel series on Disney+, for instance, attempt to place them in a timeline concurrent to the films, but there’s always a bit of fudging to make things work. And that’s true of shows on HBO Max as well, where time sometimes doesn’t seem to pass. That’s why the opening to And Just Like That Episode 7 threw off so many viewers in its evident passage of months montage. So, how much time has *actually* passed in And Just Like That since the loss of Big? Let’s dig into it.
Warning: Spoilers for And Just Like That Episode 7 follow. The opening to the Jan. 13 episode, set to Carly Simon’s “Spring Is Here,” found Carrie sitting in her apartment window, tap-tap-tapping away on her MacBook. Her outfits changed, her hair was up, then down, and still, she typed. The late summer sun turned to leaves falling, then there was snow on the windowsill outside. Heavier snow piled up, then melted away, and finally, the sun came out again. And then Carrie was in her editor’s office, who was gaga over the book she’d written while processing her grief over Big.
So, how long was that, exactly? Most people would assume it would be about six months, going from the late sun of October to the early spring days of March. Except, that doesn’t align with the rest of the episode’s dialogue. Miranda, for instance, mentioned it had been three months since she DMed Che, which viewers saw in Episode 6. Seema staged Carrie like an apartment on dating apps in mid-February. Meanwhile, Diwali, which was a major set piece of Episode 6, usually happens in the late fall. (In 2021, it fell in November.)
So, what gives? With the editor worried about Carrie’s book being ready for the winter holiday rush, when exactly in time are we?
The first and most obvious thing is that, realistically, Carrie writing the book doesn’t have to have happened from the end of Episode 6 to the beginning of Episode 7. However long that montage was suggesting, it’s possible it was only supposed to apply to the book writing process. Carrie could have been writing as far back as the night Big lay on the shower floor. Considering that was the night of a school concert — the first of which are usually held in October — this montage probably was not a time jump, but more of a time lapse showing that Carrie’s been writing a book concurrent with the previous episodes.
Moreover, although it’s been about three months since Miranda reached out the Che, it’s been several more since Big’s heart attack. Carrie’s done a lot of things. She had hip surgery, which she fully recovered from, a process that takes on the order of four weeks. She sold an apartment, bought another one, and sold that one too. (Anyone who’s ever lived through closing on a piece of property knows that can take forever.) As for the editor’s fretting about Carrie’s dating epilogue happening in time for the holiday rush, publishing takes months of behind-the-scenes work (just ask George R.R. Martin!), so worrying about that in early March to release a book in October is probably just an inside baseball joke.
In short, although the show doesn’t seem interested in the exact when of the details, it’s easily been six months since Big’s funeral. And just like that, time keeps on slipping into the future.
And Just Like That continues with new episodes every Thursday on HBO Max.