- Emily in Paris -Is Emily Really A Trekkie On 'Emily In Paris'?
There's lots of things you could call Emily Cooper from Emily in Paris. Ambitious. Fashionable. Bubbly. American. But Trekkie? Not so much. Yet, in the first few minutes of Season 2, Emily references Star Trek in Emily in Paris by citing the "Prime Directive." When Gabriel looks rightfully confused, Emily explains how she knows about Star Trek from her dad. That is a common (if basic) explanation of how someone may know about Star Trek. But does this reference really track with what viewers know of Emily's personality? Or is this more the work of a Trekkie in the Emily in Paris writers' room?
The Star Trek franchise is so pervasive in pop culture, that a person who never watched a single episode or even any of the Chris Pine reboot movies could do the Vulcan salute and say, "Live long and prosper." Emily quoting the Prime Directive — the policy of not interfering with alien cultures or civilizations while exploring space, the final frontier — is a tad deeper than that. Though as the guiding principle of Starfleet since the original 1960s TV series that has played a part in the subsequent TV series and films, it's not some deep Star Trek trivia by any means.
As a person who began watching Star Trek: The Next Generation during COVID lockdown, I wouldn't have been able to name the Prime Directive prior to 2020. (And yes, I saw J. J. Abrams's Star Trek movie in theaters the night it came out.) But through my initiation into the fandom, I've learned that more people than I realized know a decent amount about the Star Trek universe — either from osmosis as a kid (like Emily) or by actively watching it.
There are still loads of people who know literally nothing about the franchise. (My Dr. Beverly Crusher Halloween costume baffled many a family member and friend.) But it's not entirely unbelievable that Emily would have soaked this tidbit in. After all, one fan on Twitter noted that Emily once dressed like Spock in Season 1. And while I couldn't confirm the exact outfit they were referring to, thanks to The Dipp's handy Emily outfit guide (and here's the one for Season 2!), I'm going to go with the last outfit she wore in Season 1 since it came complete with a Starfleet insignia pin/combadge.
It's consistent for Emily to make a pop culture reference. In Season 1, Emily mentioned Moulin Rouge, Ratatouille, Gossip Girl... exactly the type of pop culture references one would expect from a person like Emily. But who's to say what a Trekkie or (more accurately in Emily's case) casual Star Trek watcher looks like or acts like? Do I seem like someone who watches TNG? (Well, since I write about shows like Outlander and The Witcher for a living... probably.) But this is a No Fandom Gatekeeping Zone!
It's true Emily in Paris had done nothing to establish that Emily would be a person who, A. watched Star Trek and B., enjoyed it enough to retain the Prime Direction. But yet, why is it so easy to believe Emily's dad — the Weimaraner breeder from Winnetka, Il. — would be a Trekkie and Emily not? Not to give the writers too much credit, but perhaps the Star Trek reference is just Emily doing what Emily does best — surprising the people around her by demonstrating that there's more to her than meets the eye. Longue vie et prospérité, Emily!
Images: Netflix, CBS