Ukraine’s culture minister has been watching the Netflix series “Emily in Paris” and is dissatisfied.
Oleksandr Tkachenko expressed his displeasure with the “offensive” portrayal of Petra, a Ukrainian character, in season 2 of the Netflix series, which premiered in December.
Emily (Lily Collins) is an American executive juggling the ramifications of sleeping with her friend’s boyfriend, Gabriel (Lucas Bravo), the pressures of her career in Paris — and the cultural boundaries that exist between her and her Parisian colleagues.
To aid in her integration, the Chicago native enrols in a beginner’s French class, where she meets Daria Panchenko’s character Petra.
Petra, on the other hand, creates a horrible first impression on Emily when she brazenly steals clothes from a nearby mall and encourages Emily to do the same before dashing off through the streets of Paris.
Tkachenko was critical of the plot.
“We have a caricature of a Ukrainian woman in ‘Emily in Paris,’ which is unacceptable. It is, on the other hand, offensive. Will Ukrainians be perceived as such in other countries? Who steals, wants everything for free, and is frightened of being deported? That shouldn’t be the case, should it? “Two days after the second season was released, he wrote a post on his official Telegram channel.
He said that while he watched the first season and described it as “a pretty good entertainment series,” he now has “a few comments.”
“Netflix is well acquainted with Ukraine, suffice to say that most of the streets of Paris in the movie ‘The Last Mercenary’ were filmed in Kiev.”
“In addition, with the popularization of our culture, Europeans and Americans have heard about our artists and beyond. At least about the conductor Oksana Lyniv, tennis player Elina Svitolina, singer Jamala, designer Vita Kin.”
“But this is probably not enough. And we will have to continue to fight stereotypes. Because if in the 90s and 2000s Ukrainian guys were portrayed mostly as gangsters, over time that has changed.”
When the first season of “Emily in Paris” premiered in 2020, some French viewers panned it, claiming that it repeated tired stereotypes about the City of Light and its residents.
More recently, Emily’s new love interest, Alfie (Lucien Laviscount), a British banker, has received mixed responses from viewers.
In season 2 of the Netflix drama, Lucas Bravo (left) and Lucien Laviscount (right) play Emily’s two love interests.
“I hate how they’ve portrayed Alfie in Emily in Paris,” one user tweeted, arguing that British “people would NEVER be that cringe.”
“Alfie in Emily in Paris really is the stereotypical British guy who loves to go to the pub,” wrote another.
“I am in LOVE with Alfie from Emily in Paris,” another user tweeted.
Despite its detractors, the Emmy-nominated show has continuously attracted a large audience.
According to a press release, the first season was Netflix’s most popular comedy series of 2020, with 58 million households watching it in its first four weeks.