Season two of Netflix’s Emily in Paris recently dropped, and there’s a lot of online chatter– for better or worse – about the comedy. Season one was the most popular comedy series on the streaming giant in 2020, reaching 58 million viewers in its first 28 days of release. Season two’s more detailed statistics aren’t available yet as of this writing, but as of Christmas Day (its 4th day of release), it was the #2 show on Netflix behind only The Witcher. Emily in Paris is doing so well that Netflix renewed the series about a twenty-something American in Paris starring Lily Collins for seasons three and four – despite some truly terrible reviews.
Season two picks up where season one left off, and while we’ll try not to give away any major spoilers, it’s ridiculously hard not to as any breakdown of the series simply must talk about the love triangle Emily finds herself in during season two. The sparks and tension between Emily and her neighbor, chef Gabriel (Lucas Bravo), continue to sizzle, but his on-again off-again girlfriend and Emily’s BFF Camille is still in the picture. To say that’s a sticky situation is the understatement of the season.
While Emily in Paris is a hit with American audiences, actual Parisians are a bit salty about the series and its depiction of their beloved city. In an interview last year, one resident of Paris said, “Between the beret, the cocktail dresses, and the impeccable streets, Parisians had a hard time recognizing their everyday life.” Things haven’t gotten any better for actual Parisians with season two, who call the show cliched and devoid of the diversity of culture and people of color that exist in the actual City of Light – a point, it should be noted, that creator Darren Star was accused of with Sex and the City as well.
Despite the criticism, millions of people find Emily in Paris to be utterly irresistible. Here are the top five reasons to watch Emily in Paris if you haven’t yet — or watch it again if you have!
The world has endured two full years of a pandemic, and it shows no signs of slowing down in 2022. Travel is curbed, and in some cases totally canceled. Emily in Paris gives viewers a chance to experience Paris – albeit a touristy, idealized, stereotypical version of the city – as well as Saint-Tropez and other European destinations where Emily and her friends travel to for work and play.
And, since Emily in Paris is set in an Instagram-like world with no pandemic, we get to see these attractive people dance the night away in nightclubs, board packed trains, eat in crowded restaurants, and do all the other things many people have not been able to do since early 2020.
Emily in Paris is the perfect balm for anyone experiencing the suffocating feeling of being stuck at home yet still having wanderlust, and it allows audiences to live vicariously through its titular character.
The wacky clothes make Carrie Bradshaw’s Sex and the City wardrobe look tame
Emily in Paris’ costume designer is the famed Patricia Field, of Sex in the City and Ugly Betty fame. In fact, Field turned down the opportunity to do the costumes for And Just Like That due to her commitment to Emily in Paris, which is fortunate for viewers because oh, what delicious, colorful, totally ridiculous costumes they are!
In one of the new season’s episodes, Lily Collins wears vertically rainbow-striped pantaloons (truly, that’s the only thing they can be described as), a beaded, cropped, black sweater with a furry pink lapel, a pink-and-green plaid beret, and a tiny Kelly green purse. It is sensory overload in the form of an outfit and delightful in the most bonkers way.
In another episode, Emily saunters into the Savoir offices wearing a dress that has a one-sleeved sheer lace top with an a-line, plaid skirt. It left viewers wondering, in what office environment is that appropriate clothing? Still, it is all a full Technicolor fantasy wardrobe that is a lot of fun to see on screen.
Sylvie is simply divine and exactly who we want to be when we grow up
As Emily’s boss Sylvie, French actress Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu is simply divine. She has a take-no-prisoners and accept-no-BS personality. She’s chic, yet world-weary, and drop-dead sexy in a very Parisian way. Sylvie, as head of the marketing firm Savoir, is a successful businesswoman and understands how things work in France – something Emily from Chicago does not.
Sylvie has a sex appeal born out of her natural, unique good looks and enhanced by her age and experience. She is a stark contrast to the young, fresh-faced ingénue that Emily is, and is a perfect example of how older women can be every bit as appealing and sexy (sometimes even more so) than their younger counterparts.
There’s been a serious lack of truly successful romantic comedy movies and television shows over the past several years. Emily in Paris delivers up all the situations which fans of that genre crave. Lily Collins’ Emily flirts and has sparks with her neighbor Gabriel, played by the very easy-on-the-eyes Lucas Bravo. However, Gabriel is a chef with a girlfriend, who is also Emily’s friend. Love triangle achievement unlocked! The third angle of this triangle is Camille, Gabriel’s wealthy on-again off-again girlfriend and Emily’s new friend. The web of lies and half-truths she has to weave to not reveal that she and Gabriel have had sex – well, it’s impressive that Emily can keep it all straight.
Just like Carrie Bradshaw in Darren Star’s Sex and the City, Emily is surrounded by a group of good friends, with Ashley (Mindy Chen) leading the pack. Emily’s Savoir co-workers have also provided friendship and advice on living and working in Paris; even Sylvie has her moments.
For all the criticism this show gets about being mere fluff, the critics don’t understand that after the past two years and more of pandemics, deaths, and bad news, fluff is exactly what the world needs now. Emily in Paris is true escapism in its finest form.
The fan theories are sublime
It’s clear that Emily in Paris has struck a nerve with fans, evidenced by the fact that they constantly come up with theories about where the storyline is going. When fans are dreaming up storylines, you know the show is a bona fide hit.
The first fan theory involves Kim Cattrall, who famously played Samantha Jones in Sex and the City. Cattrall isn’t taking part in the reboot And Just Like That, and the series explained the fact away by revealing that Samantha had moved to London. This is where the fan theories launch off. Because both Sex and the City and Emily in Paris were created by Darren Star, and because Samantha is in London and works in PR and marketing like Emily, fans believe that Samantha Jones will appear on Emily in Paris in some capacity, such as working with Savoir, or even taking over Savoir.
The second fan theory believes that Camille’s wealthy family (specifically her mom) hired Alfie (played by Lucien Laviscount), Emily’s season two love interest, to distract Emily from and/or keep her away from Gabriel. During one episode, when Camille is bereft at discovering that Emily and Gabriel had a fling, her mother tells her to “do as I say.” At one point, Alfie even joked to Emily that he was a spy, which fans have taken literally, believing he may be a spy for Camille and/or her mother.
For all these reasons and more, Emily in Paris is especially irresistible to any fan of romantic comedies and anyone else who might need a little escape from the world right now. It may not be high art, but it’s some of the most fun, colorful, and comforting television around.
Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, and Kristin Davis have released a joint statement addressing the assault allegations against Chris Noth.
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