French critics have taken a sledgehammer to Netflix’s rom-com series Emily in Paris, mainly because it’s absolutely stuffed with clichés. I mean, are we surprised?
For those unacquainted with Emily Cooper (Lily Collins) from Emily in Paris, she’s the 20-something marketing executive who lands her dream job in the French capital, despite not speaking French.
The show is pure escapism from this shitshow of a year – as I wrote yesterday, it’s dumb and fun content. But we love it! We’re obsessed with it (and Lucas Bravo)!
The French media? Not so much.
When Netflix first released the trailer, culture magazine Les Inrockuptibles dragged the series (and creator Darren Star) for seemingly finding inspiration from Moulin Rouge, baguettes, and Ratatouille.
Journo and podcast host Jennifer Padjemi tweeted with the trailer, “Stop lying about Paris. This is why tourists are traumatised when they come for the first time.”
“Can’t wait to watch,” she added in brackets.
And then the reviews came out.
Premiere, via The Hollywood Reporter, wrote, “[In Emily in Paris], we learn that the French are ‘all bad’ (si, si), that they are lazy and never arrive at the office before the end of the morning, that they are flirtatious and not really attached to the concept of loyalty, that they are sexist and backward, and of course, that they have a questionable relationship with showering. Yes, no cliché is spared, not even the weakest.”
I have to admit that some of the scenes are very cringe, like that bit in the first episode when Emily melts over a chocolate croissant. Or, well, the entire first episode.
Senscritique absolutely murdered the series, writing, “[Emily in Paris] does not happen at all in Paris, but in the same city as Amélie Poulain [from the film Amélie], a kind of witness town where each street becomes picturesque without the slightest rubbish, with extras dressed in haute-couture and it only rains if Lily Collins is sad.”
The review continued, “The writers may have hesitated for two or three minutes to stick a baguette under each Frenchman, or even a beret to distinguish them clearly.”
French radio station RTL shared on its website, “Between the beret, the cocktail dresses, and the impeccable streets, Parisians had a hard time recognising their everyday life.”
RTL even compiled “the most improbable, the most clichéd, the most caricatured (and sometimes the funniest) scenes from Emily in Paris.”
Then there’s AlloCiné – like Rotten Tomatoes – which currently holds a 2.9/5 rating for Emily in Paris.
One user called it “anti-French”, while another wrote, “It’s just deplorable, I wonder why French actors agreed to star in this series.”
It’s not all bad though!
One fan found a lot of humour in the “exploitation of clichés” and the language barrier.
Another wrote, “There are clichés, yes, but nothing bad if one is able to take a step back and have a sense of humour!”
If you haven’t already, you can binge Emily in Paris on Netflix now.