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Aidan vs. Big: The Battle of Carrie Bradshaw's Boyfriends

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Savannah Sher
These are the battle of the boyfriends! We’re only going to be focusing on events of the show, and leaving the movies out of our considerations. We’re going to consider things like attractiveness, communication, romance and how he treated Carrie! Who is your favourite boyfriend of the two?

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Aiden Vs Big: The Battle of Carrie Bradshaw’s Boyfriends

This one is bound to be controversial, so feel free to continue the debate in the comments. Welcome to MsMojo and today we’re comparing Carrie’s two great loves, Aidan Shaw and Mr. Big.

We’re only going to be focusing on events of the show, and leaving the movies out of our considerations. Furthermore, we’ll be focusing on who’s best for Carrie, not necessarily who’s objectively the better partner.

Round 1: Attractiveness

From the very first episode of “Sex and the City”, Mr. Big is the quintessential tall, dark and handsome man who consumes Carrie’s heart and mind. There’s no denying his appeal, whether he’s physically your type or not. He always keeps just enough of a distance from Carrie that she’s always reaching for his affection and approval, and what’s hotter than a guy who’s always playing hard to get? Big is nothing if not impeccably dressed, and we know he’s got plenty of money if that’s your thing. He’s always there with a wink and a smile when you least expect him, and never stops keeping Carrie on her toes.

Aidan’s appeal is altogether different. He’s a much more rugged guy who works with his hands and can definitely change your lightbulbs for you. We’re definitely not crazy about his long hair circa season three, but when he shows up in Carrie’s life again post-breakup, he has seriously cleaned himself up. Season four Aidan is undeniably hot, with a much shorter haircut and a more trim bod. Overall, he leans much more toward sweet than sexy, but you know he’ll always make you feel safe.

This one is ultimately a matter of personal opinion, but in terms of looks and general appeal we’ve got to give this one to Mr. Big, but by a very small margin.

WINNER: Big 1 / Aidan 0

Round 2: Communication

Now here’s where Big is sure to lose some points. That very same enigmatic nature that makes Big so appealing is also what makes him totally infuriating. From the start, it’s clear that Carrie is interested in setting some boundaries in their relationship and slowly taking steps forward, but at every step of the way Big throws a wrench in her plans. He’s never clear with her about what he wants, and hell, it seems like even he doesn’t know what he wants. He admits that dating him won’t be a walk in the park because of his personal issues, but self-awareness doesn’t excuse his behavior.

Aidan, on the other hand, is consistently totally clear with Carrie about what he’s feeling and what he wants. When they first meet, he puts his foot down about her smoking, saying it’s a dealbreaker. When she gets all weird because their relationship is going so smoothly, he agrees to play along with her game and gives her a taste of what she’s been missing. He clearly only does this to make a point though - that communication is key in relationships. Also, in terms of getting serious, Aidan gives Carrie everything she thought she wanted when he proposes to her. And their fights? Way more funny than relationship ending.

This one is a no brainer, the point for communication skills undoubtedly goes to Aidan.

WINNER: Big 1 / Aidan 1

Round 3: Romance

Whether it’s everyday romance or grand romantic gestures, Big is always ready to pull something out of his sleeve. He may not be the most loving and affectionate all the time, but his timing is impeccable when it comes to being there for Carrie when she really needs him. He’s always unexpectedly pulling up in his limo, coming to whisk Carrie away. He also made the ultimate journey to proclaim his love for her in Paris, letting all of his prior commitment phobias be damned.

Aidan is also romantic, with his own brand of quiet and subtle gestures that often go unappreciated by Carrie. When they first start dating, he says he wants to take it slow and Carrie can’t help but doubt whether he’s really into her. He creates a sweetly romantic scenario by lighting candles and drawing her a bath, though he still makes it clear that sex isn’t on the table. When it comes time for Charlotte and Trey’s wedding, Aidan makes them the most heartfelt gift, though unfortunately the moment is kind of ruined by Carrie admitting to her infidelity.

The reality is, both of these guys are capable of being romantic, but when it comes down to it, it seems that Carrie is much more receptive to Big’s brand of romantic gestures than she is to Aidan’s, so the point has to go to Big.

WINNER: Big 2 / Aidan 1

Round 4: How He Treated Carrie

Despite his ability to romance her, no one can deny that Mr. Big was across the board a pretty horrible boyfriend. He never factored her into his life plans, announcing to her at the last minute that he was planning on moving to Paris. He was never willing to commit to Carrie or give her the type of relationship she craved, and his inconsistency pretty much drove our leading lady nuts for an entire six seasons (and a movie!). It was a struggle to get Big to meet her friends, and until the bitter end, they were all skeptical of him. All in all, this guy does not have a good track record.

When we talk about how Aidan treated Carrie though, you may want to interrupt and ask, “does any of this even matter because of how Carrie treated him?” Aidan was a great boyfriend, no question about it. He was never anything less than loving and attentive, even stepping in to help when Carrie’s friends were in need. He would do anything for his girl, but despite that Carrie failed to appreciate what she had. She cheated on him with Big (for a long time) and kept him on the hook throughout their engagement even though her heart wasn’t in it.

There’s no debate on this one. In terms of kindness, consideration, general boyfriend points and the way he treated her friends, Aidan passes this one with flying colors. If only Carrie had seen it for what it was!

WINNER: Big 2 / Aidan 2

Round 5: Compatibility

When Carrie tried to date someone who she had a lot in common with, Berger, it didn’t exactly go well. But as far as compatibility goes after Jack, Mr. Big is a close and more functional second. They both enjoy the finer things in life, and Big’s sizable income allows Carrie to live out her every whim. More so than any of the other guys she dates, Carrie and Big do seem like friends, at least on occasion. They have fun together, and when he lets his lighthearted side come out, they end up seeming like a great couple, all other problems aside.

In the show’s fourth season, Aidan and Carrie are back together after the affair fiasco, but it seems as though the show’s writers were trying to show viewers just how incompatible these two were. When it comes down to it, Carrie is a city girl who’s never going to get down with Aidan’s rustic country house. And she’s surely not going to be happy staying in with a bucket of chicken on a Saturday night. Despite how sweet Aidan was, this couple simply did not have enough in common.

In terms of compatibility, there isn’t much of a contest here. Carrie and Aidan never could have made it work, because deep down they were just too different. Carrie and Big have something major in common though, which somehow makes their relationship work- a hint of selfishness.

WINNER: Big 3 / Aidan 2

Big is taking this one with a 3-2 lead, but just remember that we’re talking about who’s best for Carrie, not necessarily who’s the better guy.

Who do you love more? Be sure to debate it in the comments and of course, don’t forget to subscribe to MsMojo for more divisive versus battles.


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