Emily in Paris follows Emily, a motivated 20-year-old Chicagoan who relocates to Paris for it’s unexpected career opportunity. She’s been assigned the duty of bringing an American perspective to a venerable French marketing agency. A politician termed Netflix’s Emily in Paris “inappropriate” and “offensive” for its portrayal of a Ukrainian character.
Season 2 of “Emily in Paris,” starring Lily Collins as the title character, debuted on December 22 and has already caused some controversy. Fans had previously criticized the sitcom, claiming that “Emily in Paris” lacked diversity and stereotyped cultures.
Ukraine’s Minister of Culture and Information Policy, Oleksandr Tkachenko, mentioned a character named Petra, who leads Emily into stealing clothes and accessories from a store at one point in the series. According to The Mirror, Tkachenko slammed the series for their stereotyping.
“In the 1990s and 2000s, Ukrainian guys were portrayed mainly as gangsters. Over time this has changed. However, not in this case. In Emily in Paris we have a caricature of a Ukrainian woman which is unacceptable. It is also offensive. Is this how Ukrainians will be seen abroad? Who steal, want to get everything for free, be afraid of deportation? This should not be so.”
The Mirror reported that researcher Olga Matveieva also chimed in, saying it was a shame that Petra “marginalises the image of an average Ukrainian woman.” Despite receiving two Golden Globe nominations, including best musical/comedy series, some commentators criticized “Emily in Paris” for portraying Parisians as nasty, misogynistic, and arrogant.
Lucas Bravo, who plays one of the show’s primary love interests, told Cosmopolitan that he understood why some viewers disliked the “cliché” show. Collins said that season 2 will focus on diversity and inclusion following the criticism.
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