STEPHANIE BRANCHU, NETFLIX
When Emily in Paris premiered on Netflix earlier this month, we were excited. (It was created by Darren Star, the genius behind Sex and the City!) However, now it seems as though everyone with a Netflix subscription has watched the show to either hop on the hate bandwagon and critique its depiction of Parisians as sexed-up grumps, Emily's bizarre outfits, how she's bad at her job, and her cringe-worthy naivety, while the other Emily in Paris camp defends the series saying its fun to watch and utterly harmless.
Finally, Emily herself (aka. star Lily Collins) has broken her silence on the good, the bad, and the ugly feedback the show has received in recent weeks. And though she loves the series, she sees where naysayers are coming from. She spoke about it to Vogue Arabia on October 28th.
“As disheartening as it sometimes is to read these things, it’s also a gift; you’re being allowed to improve," Collins said.
If and when a Season 2 happens for Emily in Paris, Collins noted that she and the show's co-creators hope to "evolve" Emily's character. She told Vogue Arabia that the showrunners have “championed my opinions and opened me up to an experience that was so rewarding and empowering.”
Collins also recently responded to the backlash she received when she said she believed Emily is about 22 years old. Those who watched the show were quick to point out how Emily has a master's degree and has worked long enough to have "earned the respect of her boss" in Chicago, as Collins said—neither of which would be possible for a 22-year-old.
"Emily looking at me when I get her age wrong," Collins tweeted in response on October 16th. "Sorry girl. You might not be 22, but I gotta say—you do act like it sometimes." Fair point.
Furthermore, Lucas Bravo, who plays Emily's love interest Gabriel in the series, said that he agrees with the people who are upset with the French stereotypes.
“I think they’re right, in a way," Bravo told Cosmopolitan. "We’re portraying cliches and we’re portraying one single vision of Paris. Paris is one of the most diverse cities in the world. We have so many ways of thinking, so many different nationalities, so many different neighbourhoods. A lifetime wouldn’t be enough to know everything that’s going on in Paris.”
But, he said, Emily in Paris creators had to choose an angle to tell the story they needed to tell. "You have to choose a vision. French critics, they didn’t understand the fact that it’s just one vision. They’re like, “Oh, this is not what Paris is.” Of course. Paris is many things," Bravo said.
We expect a lot of our television shows now—just look at how the world crumbled after the final season of Game of Thrones blew up in our faces. Sometimes we have to remember that television is there for our entertainment, and sometimes, it isn't going to be perfect. Emily in Paris has its foibles and quirks, and honestly, those quirks have made the show more fun to watch.