Both of my parents speak/spoke French fluently. It was part of the reason I opted for Spanish, personally, but my brother isn't fluent either. My mother, in particular, is prone to saying things in French for no discernible reason. In her defense, she's in France fairly often, as she's Scottish and still lives in Scotland part of the year, so she goes to France often.
But I did think it a little odd that Midge didn't speak a word of French solely because she had to have studied some other language and I'm thinking freaking German would be out for a variety of reasons, including the time period of the show.
That was such a fun episode and such a visual treat. ASP is clearly over the damned moon to have such a substantial budget and seems to be having the time of her life with it. It made perfect sense that the story went to Paris, ASP loves the idea of Paris and may actually love Paris itself, for all I know. I just know she has a fondness for making creative use of Paris as a destination for characters, whether or not we go with them.
Sadly, she also has a fondness for women being in love with the worst types of guys, forever and ever. It looks as if we're going to be in for yet another irritatingly tortured romance. I wish I liked Joel even a tiny bit, but I absolutely do not. I also don't like that living with another woman is something that Midge thought they'd just move past as a blip. ASP, she loves Paris and the thought of overly privileged, primarily weak-willed men with oddly fragile egos.
Having just trashed Joel (I've nothing against the actor, he's doing a good job with what he's given) I was pleased that she apparently has a story in mind for him that won't simply be embodying the thing that holds Midge back from ever moving forward to other relationships. Besides, ASP added self-awareness to the characterization of Joel and made him far more likable just through that.
I adore Tony Shaloub but I hope they give him something to do other than flap around the perimeter of scenes, explosively declaring things with just a shade too much emphasis. I think he's right to play the character broadly, in some ways, he's playing a bit of an archetype, but he's a good actor and capable of more shading and subtlety. Like the scene when he finds out Midge was arrested, nice, subtle work last season. I hope they give him some room to grow but both Joel and Shaloub's character had a good, nicely earned backseat position to the very dynamic women in their lives and when he was telling Rose that the chair is broken, I just loved how absolutely horrified he was. He put a fair amount of emotional elasticity into that frustrated, aghast, concerned, loving, confused line read.
I'm rationing these episodes rather than binging them. Good lord, it's nice to see something fully diverting, that also gives us a kinder view into the past than something like Mad Men, that gave such a cynical rendering of the time periods it touched, I was amazed that the generations before us hadn't perished from despair death in greater numbers (references to Plath notwithstanding). I understand that the truth was probably uglier than Mrs. Maizel but less unrelentingly grim than Mad Men. I'm up for the primarily diverting at present, so this fills that category nicely.