Netflix Series Atelier: It’s Not Just About Underwear

My mother once said, you can tell a lot about a person’s personality based on the shoes he or she wears.  From looking at the picture below (yes it’s my shoes), that’s not far from the truth.

I’m plain, practical, and environmentally conscious.  Rain or shine, I love to walk. I’ve had these shoes for over 12 years! The more I wear it, the more comfortable it feels. As much as I adore my beaten-up shoes, I do feel self-conscious about it, especially around other women.  Not everyone finds my shoes adorable, especially my mother who often scolded me for my unkempt appearance.  They might even associate it with the lack of funds in my bank account after seeing me wear the same shoes every day, or what is worse, they might see me lacking in confidence as a woman. Unfortunately, women do care a lot about their appearance and there is a good reason why.

After watching a chic Netflix show called Atelier, the concept can’t be more true–women often choose clothes to express their inner beauty.   In this case, the show uses lingerie and not shoes to illustrate this point.  Lingerie is a metaphor for beauty.  After all, lingerie is not meant to be displayed because real beauty, according to the show, is hidden and each woman defines it differently.

You are probably thinking it’s just a show about women. Not entirely true.  It’s about creators who wish to express themselves a bit more freely apart from doing business.  Making money and creating art are two different things.  The show clearly pointed that out.  If you are an artist, or a creative person, I think you can empathize with the characters very well. We often struggle with creating things we don’t always want to do, but we do it because there is a market for it. It’s like a show that cheers all the creative people in the world: “You can do it as a struggling artist! Make money with your art!” I was so moved by the scene where one of the characters subtly insulted businessmen and their mass-produced products. Businessmen/women have the tendency to follow what is popular—they research a product just to secure a profit. I get it. Money is the backbone of a functioning society, however, starving creativity, kills the human soul. We begin to ask ourselves what’s the meaning of our existence if we can’t create the things we want.

Another thing I liked about the show was watching the main character (Mayuko Tokita) and the side character (Mayumi Nanjo) interacting like mother and daughter. They don’t always agree with each other. The mother-like character was always scolding the unruly daughter.  Overall, I thought the show did a great job with characters development. They all grew and as a result, I learned something very valuable along with them.  Maybe it’s time for me to have some self-confidence. Get a new pair of shoes and run after my true passion (sorry ancestors if my passion brings you shame).

I am surprised how much I enjoyed the show. I didn’t expect much from it.  I recommend this show, especially to female audience or if you are one of those people who are in tuned with your creative side.

Note: Originally posted on Mar. 29, 2019, revised Jul. 20, 2020.