The way my DVR describes this episode is, "Larissa offers Carrie and internship at her magazine. Meanwhile, Donna blackmails Maggie; Dorrit and Tom attend The Nutcracker; George misreads Carrie's motives after the school dance; and Mouse attributes her slipping grades to her romance with Seth." I know what you're thinking, how can they fit all that plot into one hour? Well, let me tell you, most of these plotlines don't matter at all. In fact, let's just leave it at "Dorrit and Tom attend The Nutcracker" for that one.
The main issue at hand is Carrie's: how to make two uncomplicated situations more complicated for my Diaries? She is working a boring/crappy, unpaid internship at her father's friend's law firm, then gets offered an opportunity to do pretty much whatever she wants at her favorite magazine. Despite her father's wishes to guilt her into staying at her internship and become a lawyer, Carrie wants to write things and work for vapid people.
The other dilemma for Carrie is one of the heart. She is dating George, a slimy rich guy, but is attracted to Sebastian, who is also a slimy rich guy. Sebastian is a bit more her speed, though, and they keep bumping into each other. But Sebastian is dating Donna LeDonna, who is awful. There's also this Winter Dance that everyone's making a big deal about. In the 1980s, everything goes down at the school dance.
Mouse is taking Seth to the dance, even though she was too busy having sex with him to study and got an unacceptable B+ on a test as a result. Mouse tries to do some extra credit, under a teacher's preposterous demands, but fails to turn it in on time so she breaks up with Seth so they can be doctors some day. They will probably be horny doctors, though, like the ones on Grey's Anatomy.
Walt has the chicken pox for this episode, so Maggie is taking a stand and going to the dance by herself. She ends up getting drunk and having sex with that cop again, but Donna LeDonna sees and tries to use it as leverage to enlist Maggie's help in keeping Carrie and Sebastian apart. This lasts all of two minutes before Maggie cracks and tells Carrie everything.
Carrie dances and kisses George in front of Sebastian to make him jealous at the dance, and it works. But once she's alone with horny George in the limo, Carrie realizes what a huge mistake she's made. George tries to pressure her into sex, then a blowjob, and Carrie breaks up with him like she should. Then, Carrie decides to take the internship at Interview, somehow, even though no one knows she's a high school student and it seems like Larissa is very disorganized.
Carrie keeps insisting to us that George is "hot." She says it's nice to have a hot boyfriend to keep things warm (gross) when you're in Manhattan in the winter. George isn't really that hot, but he is rich, and money keeps you real warm. Also, I thought Carrie's internship had her in Manhattan just on Friday afternoons. So what is George doing?
Oh, back in '80s high school, on a day that is not Friday, Carrie is falling down stairs and being caught by Sebastian. This allows her to make a Mary Lou Retton joke ("Hey, it's the '80s, you probably forgot because we haven't done a good enough job of distinguishing the trends of the '80s from the trends of today because we still want our characters to look good!"). Could she be falling for more than just the floor? By the way, I challenge anyone to actually catch someone falling down the stairs. It's not like that.
So George, the rich pervert, brings Carrie to work so he can suggest role-play while she licks stamps for his specific pleasures. Carrie doesn't want "Bitchy Barbara" to see her with her boyfriend at work because she wants to be seen as a professional like Barbara. Then, destroying everything she spent years building, Barbara runs in an hour and a half late, with her hair a mess, wearing the scarf Carrie gave her four episodes ago tossed over her shoulders.
Barbara, who I don't think is really a bitch, spent the night at her date's house and is delighted to be having real, adult, city sex. Enthralled in Carrie's lives and the lives of people in her periphery, Mouse and Maggie discuss Barbara's exploits at the diner. I really wish they would stop calling her "Bitchy Barbara." They all agree that it's sad for Barbara to be blowing off work for a guy at her age.
In a clever little nod to SATC, Carrie says that she hopes Mouse or Maggie will smother her with a pillow if she's still dating and talking about guys at age 30. They assume they will all be married by 30, and they also assume they will still be friends. They could not be more wrong.
"I can't believe we all have great boyfriends," Carrie muses, which can only mean that some things will go wrong, like Maggie finding out her great boyfriend is gay. The Winter Dance is coming up, so Carrie needs to ask George to flaunt him in front of Sebastian. Mouse is taking Seth, her older boyfriend. But enough about Mouse, let's talk more about Carrie and how she's still in love with Sebastian.
Donna LeDonna walks in, just to be a bitch to Carrie. Now there's someone who deserves to be called "bitchy." She thanks Carrie for taking Sebastian in on Thanksgiving, something Carrie has neglected to tell George about, and then she refers to her friends as "The Jens." They don't seem to mind. They also don't seem to mind not having any lines.