June 04, 2001 12:00 PM

HBO (Sunday, 9 p.m. ET)

Show of the Week

Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) turns 35 in the fourth-season premiere (the first of two June 3 episodes). Isn’t it time the women of Sex and the City settled down? “Well, consider Carrie’s friend Charlotte (Kristin Davis). She got married last year, and her husband (Kyle MacLachlan) was a non-performer in the bedroom. Now that they’re separated, he can’t contain his lust for her. Moral: Secure relationships aren’t for everyone or every show.

Somewhat to my surprise, Sex and the City hasn’t yet passed its freshness date. Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) still hides behind her cynical wit (“Soulmates only exist in the Hallmark aisle in Duane Reade drugs”), and Samantha (Kim Cattrall) still wants it any way she can get it. In the season opener she pants after a strapping friar (Costas Mandylor), even going so far as to feign an interest in St. Francis. But the characterizations are deepening with the years. Carrie grows wiser as well as older in the first episode, and the second imparts a funny, uplifting lesson on the beauty of being yourself. I’m not quite ready for wedding bells to break up this gang.

Bottom Line: Continued satisfaction

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