Emily in Paris is a guilty pleasure of mine. I’ll admit it. Most discerning viewers would dismiss the series as being too low-brow, sexist, materialistic, and simply too silly to merit their attention. Well, I believe it is guilty of all of the above, but that is part of what makes the series so appealing. It makes for a delightful light-weight romantic comedy that feels refreshing and, yes, damn entertaining and a lot of fun for me.
Emily transports us to a world that appears to be larger than life. With the ever-photogenic Paris as the backdrop and a cast that looks picture perfect in their ever-changing beautiful outfits. Each character is interesting, funny, and well acted. Mindy, Emily’s best friend, is such an interesting supporting character that we sometimes get the impression we’re watching Mindy in Paris instead! As played by Ashley Park, Mindy comes across as someone with strong integrity, intelligence, and massive talent, all while looking stunningly beautiful. She gets more screen time this season to show off her singing abilities, and boy, can she sing!
Sylvie, the older and more sophisticated head of the marketing firm for which Emily works, is another strong character. As played by French actress Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu, Sylvie commands attention every time she appears on screen. Her performances are always genuine. It’s one of the series’ many pleasures to have characters like Sylvie who are strong, seemingly mean-spirited, but can also show a vulnerable and compassionate side.
Of course, Lily Collins remains the series’ star, but her Emily is very one-dimensional in comparison to the rest of the characters she interacts with. This is entirely Lily’s fault, as she is simply playing Emily as written for the show. This conflicting sense of characters lends the series its unique charm and balance. Not something we see very often in TV comedy series, which are usually desperate for laughs from their audience with their gag-a-minute scripts.
This season appears to have an unlimited clothing budget, as we see the main characters in one stunning outfit after another! This time, I also notice more product placement, which could have easily been an annoyance and distraction, but was instead cleverly woven into the plot. The seasons’s plot was a little directionless for me in the early episodes, but once it found its footing, the plot thickened and, as usual, ended on a cliffhanger.