Emily in Paris

Lily Collins in Emily in Paris. Photo credit: Stephanie Branchu/Netflix

Emily in Paris is a new show by creator Darren Star and if you enjoyed other Star productions,   such as last century’s Sex and the City and more recently Younger, starring Broadway sensation, Sutton Foster, you will undoubtedly be pleased with Emily in Paris.

Emily in Paris premiered as a Netflix series on October 9, with the entire ten episodes of season 1 currently streaming. Prior to its debut on Netflix it was to be aired on TVLand but then the plan was altered and the Paramount Network was to air the series. Over the summer, however, the streaming service Netflix agreed to an arrangement with ViacomCBS and acquired the rights to this dramedy. Nevertheless, MTV Studios remains as the Emily… producer. Therefore, Netflix is not in a position to guarantee a second season. 

In this easy-to-enjoy romcom we follow Emily Cooper, from Chicago to Paris. This 20-something social media strategist, is assigned to spend a year working with a French design company in order to heighten their market visibility (Emily is sympathetically characterized by Lily Collins, daughter of musician Phil Collins).

In Paris, Emily has a cold encounter with her Parisian boss, Sylvia Grateau, who has little confidence in Emily’s professional abilities, much less respect for her, due to Emily’s homey Americanisms, youthful exuberance and lack of French language skills (Sylvia is aptly portrayed by Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu). 

In addition, Emily is confronted with the perplexities of living in an apartment building that is 500-years-old. When her shower stops working Emily finds it necessary to finish washing her hair in the bidet. 

Fortunately, Emily becomes fast friends with Mindy Chen another foreign adventurer from Shanghai, who is working as a nanny for a French family (Mindy is fully incarnated by Ashley Park, who also sings like a winner of China’s Got Talent, which Mindy supposedly almost was).

With beautiful people (including Lucas Bravo as Gabriel and Camille Razat playing a character named Camille), enchanting places and an array of intriguing culture clashes and personal misunderstandings, Emily in Paris is a televised aphrodisiac, in no small part because of Patricia Field’s elegant fashion designs. Ms. Field’s history in television and film couture includes Sex and the City and The Devil Wears Prada.

Directed with single camera craftsmanship and visual sensibility by such respected auteurs as Andrew Fleming (The Craft and The In-Laws) and Zoe Cassavetes (Broken English and Day out of Days), Emily in Paris may not be an improved version of Sex and the City but it is a new, 21st century take on love and relationships. 

Available anytime on Netflix. (commonsensemedia.org recommends that due to graphic sexual situations, mature humor, and plenty of smoking that Emily in Paris is appropriate for viewers who are 15-years-old and above.)