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Literature / The Devil Wears Prada

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Miranda: You have no sense of fashion.
Andy: I think that depends on...
Miranda: No, no. That wasn't a question.

The Devil Wears Prada is a 2003 novel by Lauren Weisberger, which was adapted into a 2006 Film of the Book directed by David Frankel and starring Anne Hathaway and Meryl Streep.

It tells the story of a young woman named Andrea "Andy" Sachs (Hathaway). Her first job out of college is as personal assistant to a merciless New York fashion magazine editor, Miranda Priestly (Streep). With help from Miranda's assistant Emily (Emily Blunt) and art director Nigel (Stanley Tucci), Andy starts to work her way up the ladder... but at what cost?

Weisberger wrote a sequel novel, Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns, published in 2013. Although the film adaptation was a sleeper hit and continues to be fondly remembered, virtually everybody involved in its production has shown little interest in adapting the sequel.


In 2019, Weisberger released a sequel about Emily titled "When Life Gives You Lululemons". It focuses on Emily helping a senator's wife who is framed for drunk driving, and resisting all of Miranda's efforts to rehire her.

This book provides examples of:

  • The Alcoholic: Lily becomes one over the course of the book, which culminates in her ending up comatose following a drunk driving accident, and receiving a DWI.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted; after her drunk driving accident, Lily has scars on her face from where the windshield glass hit her.
  • Better as Friends: Andy and Alex by the end, since their romantic relationship is too frayed.
  • A Birthday, Not a Break: Emily's forced to reschedule a flight for Miranda and her husband on her birthday. She's in tears because she misses her own party and Miranda is unreasonable.
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  • Bittersweet Ending: Andy gets fired for saying "Go fuck yourself" to Miranda and leaving her in Paris, killing any chance she has of receiving editorial. In addition Lily receives a DUI after recovering from her coma and Alex breaks up with Andy because of the Skewed Priorities. But Andy eventually sells an article about her time at Runway and slowly builds her writing career like she always wanted. In the sequel, she and Emily have reconnected and started the bridal magazine.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The numerous clothes that Andy "borrows" end up giving her $38,000 after she sells it to a store that likes designers.
  • Clothing Damage: In the first chapter Andy breaks a heel, stains a suit, and accidentally burns a second set of heels.
  • Denied Parody: Miranda bears a striking similarity to Vogue editor Anna Wintour, for whom Weisberger was an assistant, but the author maintains that she is a composite of fiction and various stories of her friends' first jobs.
  • Doomed New Clothes: Lampshaded by Andy when she damages about $4000 worth of merchandise in the first chapter alone.
  • Entitled to Have You: Christian has this attitude about Andy, even though she's already dating someone else. He invites her and her boyfriend to dinner as well.
  • Faux Affably Evil: How Miranda comes off to Andrea in their first encounter.
  • Feet-First Introduction: In the film Miranda is introduced this way when getting out of her limousine.
  • Fiction 500: Miranda gets phones worth hundreds of dollars, and yet she is insulted to receive them as gifts. Andy happily takes the phone to give to Alex as a present.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Andrea and Emily as they work hard to meet Miranda's ever-changing demands.
  • Friend or Idol Decision: While in Paris with Miranda and so close to finishing her minimum-year requirement, Andy while with Miranda gets a phone call from Alex saying that Lily's in a coma. Initially Andy chooses Miranda, which makes her think that she's gone over the Moral Event Horizon. Then she delivers a Precision F-Strike to Miranda, charges a flight home to the corporate credit card before Miranda cancels it, and goes to check on Lily. She also breaks up with Alex and keeps away from Christian, moving back in with her parents and selling her designer clothes to pay any remaining bills.
  • Hope Spot: Andy's year is nearly up, Miranda knows her name and soon she might get an editorial position at Runway or The New Yorker; then her phone rings, revealing Lily is in a coma, and Alex wants her to come home as soon as possible.
  • How We Got Here: So just how did Andy get to the job where she has to drive a stick shift car and a sick puppy to Miranda Priestley's office? The second chapter illuminates that perfectly.
  • Impossible Task: Combined with her Friend or Idol Decision, what makes Andy tell Miranda to "Go fuck yourself"; Miranda wants the twins' passports renewed at night when the offices are closed in time to make a flight in three hours. Even Andy knows that doing something like that is impossible.
  • Insane Troll Logic: How Miranda operates on a regular basis. It gets to the point that Andy has to make Miranda her top priority in life, and she's relieved to see one "normal" person see the logic as insane.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Miranda when doing an impromptu performance review of Andy points out that it's rude of Andy to make those little sighs and put in minimal effort into her work as an assistant. Apart from that, she says that Andy is "reasonably competent" on the job.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Emily. Even though she's highly stressed and insults people with bad taste, she does show Andy the ropes and promises to make sure she gets paid on days when she can't clock into the office. In the sequel they start a bridal magazine together after Andy gets fired and Emily is promoted out of her job.
  • A Lady And A Scholar: Lily is a graduate student getting her PhD in Russian literature.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: It takes four years for Andy's sister Jill and her husband to have one baby.
  • Love Cannot Overcome: Alex and Andy break up because he thinks she's developed Skewed Priorities and they haven't talked about their relationship in full for a while.
  • The Makeover: Andy gets one several months after working at Runway, since everyone "borrows" from the closet.
  • Mean Brit: Miranda Priestley.
  • Meaningful Rename: Miranda Priestley from Miriam Princhek, abandoning her Jewish roots.
  • Misery Poker: After complaining about her first sucky day on the job, Andy acknowledges that Lily had a worse day by going on a date with a guy living with his parents on Long Island.
  • Nice to the Waiter: Andy is nice to the company-ordered chauffeur, even buying him a sandwich on her first day on the job. He's surprised because most assistants are not that nice. Later on, out of spite towards her boss, she starts buying coffee for the homeless people outside the Carlson-Elias building on the corporate credit card. In Paris, she surprises the hotel staff by offering to tip them despite assurances that Miranda's got them covered.
  • No Indoor Voice: Nigel has none.
  • No Sympathy: Discussed. Andy complains about her job and she gets plenty of sympathy, but no one really understands what it's like working for Miranda. It gets to the point where Alex accuses her of having Skewed Priorities when they have to cancel a trip together, not realizing that Andy's under Miranda's thumb and the other choice is to be blacklisted.
  • Not So Different:
    • Andy has a Your Approval Fills Me with Shame moment when Miranda tells her "I see so much of myself in you" after Andy has to explain that one of her friends got into a coma, but she doesn't want to leave Paris because she made a commitment to her job.
    • Later on at the end Andy sells her stories about Runway to an editor who also worked for Miranda as a Beleaguered Assistant and who praises Andy for cursing her out.
  • Parental Abandonment: Lily's parents left her to follow the Grateful Dead on tour.
  • Parental Substitute: Andy's parents take care of Lily after her drunk driving accident.
  • Persona Non Grata: Andy after she gets fired for cursing out Miranda. With that said, she still sells magazine articles and secures another interview in the Carlson-Elias building.
  • Really Gets Around: Lily with various guys; it only gets bad when she doesn't remember taking one to bed after drinking too much.
  • Sick Episode: Emily gets mononucleosis right before she's scheduled to go to Paris with Miranda.
  • Skewed Priorities: Discussed when Alex chews out Andy for prioritizing her job over their personal plans and Lily's health. Even by the end he's astounded that she initially preferred to stay in Paris than to come home and check on Lily.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: One of the people Andy meets gives her a photo of Miranda's torso spliced with a snake's tail due to the outfit she was wearing and some Insane Troll Logic. Andy asks for a blowup of it, but she says that at the party in question Miranda looked sad and alone, despite appearing professional, and tears up the photo.
  • Terrible Interviewees Montage:
    • Offscreen Emily had this with previous interviewer candidates.
    • Andy searching for apartments. Finally Lily pulls through for her to find a place $800 a month that is decent.
    • Andy also goes through this while interviewing nannies for Miranda's girls. She hires the twelfth girl, who speaks more French than English.
  • Too Good to Be True: Andy mentions this about her job as she's starting out.
  • We All Live in America: The English Miranda is described as leaving high school in London at seventeen, three months short of graduation. In the UK students leave high school (which could also be called secondary school or even comprehensive by the older generation.) at sixteen without 'graduating' (though nearly all get some qualifications- usually GCSEs- at this point; those that stay to 18 take additional qualifications for the last 2 years). Her siblings also slipped her 'bills' when they could afford it. Depending on Miranda's exact age the official school leaving age at the time might even have been 15. Given that she was from an apparently poor East End family it is unlikely that she would have been expected (or even allowed) to stay at school beyond that. The qualifications at the time would have been CSEs or O-Levels depending on ability (at 16) and A-Levels (at 18).
  • You, Get Me Coffee: Taken Up to Eleven; Andy wishes that coffee were the only thing she had to get.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Andy, flattered by Christian's attention towards her, flirts with him after Alex says they should both take a break. Also he kissed her on the neck and she never tells Alex.

The sequel Revenge Wears Prada provides examples of:

  • Anxiety Dreams: Andy starts the novel as still having them about Miranda. She eventually realizes she has PTSD.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Miranda destroys Andrea's marriage and her magazine The Plunge after purchasing it, and Andrea has severed ties with Emily for going back to Miranda and betraying her. Still, Andy has a successful writing career, and a loving daughter. She and Alex decide to try dating one more time, now that they're older.
  • Call-Back: Andy in the first book noted that a lot of people overlook that Miranda is a Bad Boss, including Emily. This ends up hurting both of them during the novel.
  • Fatal Flaw: Emily's worship for Miranda and not seeing her as a Jerkass. It costs her her editorial job and her friendship with Andrea.
  • Forgiveness: Ten years after their first breakup, Alex is able to fall for Andy again.
  • Happy Ending Override: In the end of the first novel, Andy had been coping with her breakup with Alex, securing a new job while freelancing, and mending ties with her family and Lily. Come this book's beginning, Lily moves to Colorado and Andy's parents divorce.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Andy left Emily in the lurch after cursing out Miranda, flew home to take care of Lily,and started a freelance writing career.
  • Love Cannot Overcome: Andrea divorces her husband for selling her magazine behind her back to Miranda, with Emily's help.
  • No Sympathy: Despite comforting her after the Miranda Anxiety Dreams, Max really didn't see the problem in selling The Plunge to Miranda behind Andy's back.
  • Shipper on Deck: Emily calls Alex and tells him that Andy divorced Max.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Emily towards Andrea, though she really doesn't show it until the end. When she realizes that Andrea was right about Miranda screwing them over, she calls Alex in a panic after her second firing and says she messed up, while encouraging him to go after Andrea.
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: How the book starts. Andrea has a successful career as a writer and a magazine editor. She's also marrying a man she adores. Then Miranda reenters her life, and it goes From Bad to Worse the minute she faces her former boss.
  • You Know What You Did: Emily doesn't know why Miranda fired her the first time.

The sequel When Life Gives You Lululemons Provides Examples Of:

  • Actually Pretty Funny: Andy sends some dry remarks when Emily tells her that Miranda wants Emily back. Even Emily admits it's amusing.
  • Belated Happy Ending: Emily mentions with some derision that Andy married Alex and settled down with him in a Vermont farm. Still, she's the one who orchestrated the situation.
  • Character Development: Emily has shed her wide-eyed worship of Miranda and accepting everything she does. And she's used her abrasive nature to clean up stars' PR images.
  • Deal with the Devil: Emily outright calls her bargain with Miranda to destroy Graham Hartley this. As part of it, she has to work for Miranda again, though this time she leaves on her terms.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • Emily takes a more personal investment in Karolina's plight when they find out that Graham is using the case to marry someone else with better connections. Miriam also calls out people for believing the story when Karolina hasn't done any drinking while taking fertility treatment.
    • While Emily doubts it was out of any inherent goodness, Miranda seems to take interest in hearing that Karolina has been framed for a DUI, gaslit, and separated from her stepson Harry. Karolina also used to appear at Runway as a model and remained in Miranda's good graces.
    • The moment that leads to Karolina never forgiving Graham is learning that he got a vasectomy and let her undergo five years of stressful therapy treatments.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Realizing she needs an ace in her hole, Emily goes to Miranda to ask for help with Karolina. It pays off.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: When Miriam contacts the cop who arrested Karolina, he reveals he resigned from the force to help out with the family business and is regretful on realizing she was never given a Breathalyzer due to orders from the top. He agrees to go on the record, since he's no longer a cop.
  • Pet the Dog: Miranda is very sweet towards children, like Miriam's daughter when Emily brings her to the office. She also promises to give Emily a good baby-shower gift, despite her dislike that Emily is pregnant.
  • Rule of Three: After working for Miranda twice, Emily has no desire to work for Miranda again, even with a higher pay raise and more personal control. She finally gets an excuse when she accidentally gets pregnant.
  • Surprise Pregnancy: Emily is shocked to learn she's pregnant.
  • Sympathetic P.O.V.: Subverted; as Miriam puts it, Emily is "a bitch". While she glosses over how she sold out Andy in the previous book, she is still no-nonsense and brash. This may apply more to Miranda, who is relatively kinder in this book than in the others.
  • Woman Scorned: The nail in the coffin for Graham's candidacy for president is when Karolina tells Regan, Graham's new wife, that Graham got a vasectomy without telling Karolina and lied to her about his sperm count. Cue Regan leaking the story about him hitting a child with his car while in high school, which leads to their divorce and Graham resigning from the Senate.

This film provides examples of:

  • Accidental Misnaming: Andy considers it a great breakthrough when Miranda starts calling her by her own name.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • Movie-Andy has fewer passive-aggressive moments about spending corporate dollars on petty things like coffee for the homeless and Town Cars. Also, she keeps saying no to Christian and receives a peck on the cheek rather than engage in Your Cheating Heart. Finally, she's not a chain smoker.
    • Movie-Miranda is a lot less evil than book-Miranda, and more aware of things like illness affecting her assistants and trying to be a good parent. Among other things, the scene in the limo where Miranda reveals that she gave Andy a glowing recommendation is not in the book at all.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Andrea, blonde (like author Lauren Weisberger) in the book, is played by the dark-haired Anne Hathaway in the film.
  • Adaptational Nationality: The British Miranda becomes American, while ironically American Emily becomes British as played by Emily Blunt. Both were the result of the actresses playing them refusing to do accents for their roles (even though Streep is otherwise well-known for putting on accents).
  • Adapted Out: James, one of the gay designers who is extremely nice to Andy.
  • Adaptational Personality Change:
    • Book Lily was The Alcoholic and Really Gets Around, encouraging Andy to cheat on Alex with Christian since the latter is good-looking. Movie Lily is essentially Joanne from RENT, responsible, young and chews out Andy for letting Christian kiss her.
    • Book Nigel is a Nice Guy with No Indoor Voice, who offers assistance to Andy but doesn't serve as a mentor. Movie Nigel is a Deadpan Snarker Jerkass who makes a lot of Brutal Honesty points to Andy about how she doesn't care about her job.
    • Andy's parents in the book are a Reasonable Authority Figure pair who support Andy's decision to write and build a career while expecting her to be there for family and worrying about the job changing her. In the movie her dad, who is helping with Andy's rent, takes Andy to task for not going to Stanford Law in favor of pursuing journalism and then becoming an underpaid assistant.
  • Adaptational Villainy:
    • Alex, Andy's boyfriend in the book, was a teacher who only broke up with Andy on seeing that she was prioritizing her job over everything else while putting up with it for a reasonable amount of time; he only loses his temper having to cancel a trip they planned for months, which is a human reaction, and he still wants to take a break before ending their relationship for good. Andy's boyfriend in the movie, Nate, is a Hypocrite chef who wants Andy to quit because she's obviously miserable at her job, despite them needing the rent money, and breaks up with her outright because he heard from Lily that she was cheating on him, which was not the case at all, and didn't give her a chance to defend herself.
    • Nigel and Emily are much meaner to Andy than they are in the book, where Emily and Andy start to become allies against Miranda's insanity and support each other.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Doug. He was gay in Fanon until Word of God stated otherwise.
  • Bait-and-Switch Comment: In the ending, Miranda faxes a one-page recommendation to Andy's potential new employer, telling him that Andy was the "biggest disappointment she ever had, and that if I didn't hire you I would be a complete idiot."
  • Bald of Awesome: Nigel.
  • The Beautiful Elite
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Emily gets hit by a car, but she doesn't bear that much damage, physical or otherwise.
  • Becoming the Mask: Andy takes the job as a means to higher goals but is seduced by the fashion industry. And/or by her boss, depending on what you see in the subtext.
  • Beleaguered Assistant: Andy and Emily.
  • Berserk Button: Calling the clothes "stuff" provokes Miranda into a long "The Reason You Suck" Speech rather than a simple dismissive comment. Andy going too far into her house provokes the most vicious Death Glare in the film.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Still Lighter and Softer than the book, but after quitting on Miranda in Paris, though in a quieter way, Andy doesn't get back together with Nate and thinks her writing career is shot. Still, she's able to make amends to Emily by giving her the designer clothes Emily coveted, and gets a job in journalism thanks to Miranda making a surprise recommendation.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Miranda is by no means weird or quirky, but she has such an abrasive personality that if she weren't so brilliant at her job she would likely have been replaced by someone who doesn't waste time going out of her way to be cruel.
  • Catchphrase: "That's all."
  • Control Freak: Miranda, who oversees every aspect of the magazine at every stage of the production, and thinks nothing of turning everyone else's schedule upside down while micro-managing her own.
  • Costume Porn: Being about the fashion industry, many fancy clothes show up.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Miranda and Emily, especially Miranda.
    By all means, move at a glacial pace; you know how that thrills me.
  • Death Glare: Miranda. Case in point. Andy describes an earlier one as if "the flesh was going to melt off her face".
  • Disapproving Look: Miranda's default expression, frequently overlapping with her Death Glare depending on how irritated she is.
  • Doting Parent: Miranda may be an Ice Queen, but she does love her twin daughters.
  • Double Standard:
    • After she warms up to Miranda, Andy points out that if Miranda were a man, people wouldn't care about her sadistic ways, only what a great job she does.
    • Andy is also subjected to this as she gets better at her job by her friends and boyfriend. While it's understandable to get upset over someone working overtime on a special occasion, it's another to not be able to acknowledge that she's just trying to do a one-year job so she can pay her dues and hopefully get the job she actually wants.
  • The Dreaded: Reactions to Miranda seem to range from "extreme caution" (Nigel) to "abject terror" (pretty much everyone else).
  • Establishing Character Moment: First, the message of Miranda's early arrival causes a Mass "Oh, Crap!". Next, we see a figure marching directly towards her office with everyone in the crowd scurrying to make sure they don't attract her attention. Finally, she emerges from the lift, shoves her book into her assistant's arms, and rattles off a rapid-fire stream of criticisms and demanding instructions relating both to fashion and her personal life, which simultaneously shows her own superb memory and organisational skills. Ladies and gentlemen, Miranda Priestly.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Andy had done a lot for the sake of her job that she didn't want to including miss her boyfriend's birthday and go to Paris instead of Emily, but Miranda's sacrifice of Nigel's dream job with James Holt near the end of the film to keep Jacqueline Follet from replacing her as editor-in-chief was the point she finally had enough of Miranda and left Runway despite not having worked there a full year.
  • Everyone Owns A Mac: The Runway offices. Justified in that a real fashion magazine's offices would use Apples exclusively, too.
  • "Friends" Rent Control: Mostly averted. Andy and Nate are two recent college graduates and their apartment is only slightly nicer than what someone of their income level could realistically afford — but Andy's father is also helping her out with rent.
  • Funny Background Event: The first time Andy corrects Miranda for calling her "Emily", the two designers in the background look as if they're expecting a bomb to go off.
  • HA HA HA— No: A variation; after Andy corrects Miranda on her name (much to the horror of the others in the room,) Miranda pauses, flashes a toothy smile with cold eyes with a brief chuckle, and then goes right on as if Andy hadn't spoken.
  • Hair Flip: Andy, after her makeover.
  • High Turnover Rate: Andy's last two predecessors were fired after a couple of weeks.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: In-universe, as a pot-shot to the fashion industry in general. Size-six Andy is considered fat at work and has to lose weight. It's also implied at one point that Miranda has postponed a photo shoot with Gwyneth Paltrow until she's lost some weight. The Gwyneth mention was due to the fact that at the time, she'd just had one of her children.
  • Humble Pie: After being chewed out by her boss, Andy storms out of the office and goes down to Nigel to complain. Nigel answers with a thorough "The Reason You Suck" Speech, forcing Andrea to admit that she doesn't appreciate her position enough.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: What Andy eventually becomes. Emily seems like this at first but it later becomes clear that even with her greater experience she still forgets things or doesn't explain them properly.
  • Ice Queen: Miranda, who (despite a few cracks appearing when her children are involved) never lets people get in the way of her career, and she has the failed marriages to prove it.
  • Impossible Task: Andy is asked to secure two copies of the unpublished Harry Potter book as punishment for accidentally overhearing a personal conversation between Miranda and her husband. Just as Andy's prepared to quit when she can't do it, but Christian does a Big Damn Heroes moment and secures her three copies.
  • Informed Judaism: Andy as well as Miranda, who changed her name to not sound Jewish in the book. These aspects are not mentioned in the film though.
  • In with the In Crowd: Andy after she "drinks the kool-aid" and neglects her old friends.
  • Iron Lady: Miranda. Not surprisingly, the actress would go on to play the original in the eponymous film.
  • Ironic Name: The boss from Hell has the last name "Priestly."
  • Jerkass:
    • Miranda and Emily both have extremely stressful jobs that fully necessitate brusqueness and extremely high competence requirements, but they repeatedly go out of their way to be just plain mean to other people even when doing so actually wastes more time.
    • Miranda's children deliberately get Andy to go upstairs, clearly knowing that Miranda would be furious.
  • Just Following Orders: Andy's wording is usually "I didn't have a choice", but the spirit of this excuse is there whenever Miranda makes Andy do/not do something. Everyone calls Andy out on this, including Miranda herself, who says that she still made the choice to sacrifice other people's happiness to get a career advantage.
  • Lipstick-and-Load Montage: The opening credits.
  • Little "No": Miranda's usual way of rejecting an idea is simply to use this trope, sometimes while the person is right in the middle of an excited monologue. Sometimes she briefly gives her reason for rejecting it, other times she simply moves on to the next point, leaving the speaker to peter out.
  • Lonely at the Top: Miranda Priestly.
  • Lost Aesop: The film starts off saying "Don't follow the crowd", championing Andy's uniqueness, only to reveal that her colleagues do actually know what they're talking about and she needs to catch up now she's working in the fashion industry. It then heads towards "Broaden your horizons and get to know the people you thought you had nothing in common with", changes direction and staggers towards "Don't put your job ahead of your friends" before eventually ending up somewhere in the region of "Don't compromise your ideals by working for a heartless bitch", even though doing so results in Andy getting her dream job...
  • Madness Mantra: Uttered by Emily while she's sick: "I love my job, I love my job . . ."
  • The Maiden Name Debate: Referenced; after the news of her latest divorce, Miranda predicts that the headlines will refer to "another Mr Priestly".
  • Married to the Job: Miranda, to the point that her actual husband divorces her, like the rest of them.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!": A text saying Miranda's going to be in early sends the entire office into a panic.
  • Mean Boss: Miranda, so so much.
  • Mean Brit: Emily is the only member of the main cast with an obviously British accent and is also something of a bitch.
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Meryl Streep. See under Enforced Method Acting
  • Meaningful Name: "Miranda" comes from the word latin word "admire", appropriate given how difficult it is not to despite her cruelty.
  • Moment of Weakness:
    • After her husband tells her he's divorcing her, Andy talks to Miranda in her hotel room without her makeup and fashionable attire, while Miranda lets her down her guard and openly worries about how her reputation is going to affect her children.
    • Andy deciding she's going to quit before she gets fired has her calling her boyfriend to announce her decision before she changes her mind. Later, she tries to pass off her decision to quit as one of these, though it might be more truthful to apply this to her decision not to quit.
  • Morality Pet: Miranda's twin daughters for her, though they are a Spoiled Brat pair.
  • Morning Routine: Shows Andy's morning routine, contrasted with other women's, to show how different she is.
  • No Sympathy: Miranda "Details of your incompetence do not interest me" Priestly.
  • Not Evil, Just Misunderstood: Miranda Priestly.
  • Not So Different: Miranda gives Andy this speech at the end of the film. Andy calls Miranda out on ruining Nigel's promotion to save her own ass and that she'll never do such a thing. Miranda tells her that she already did when she went to Paris in Emily's place. She says "I see a great deal of myself in you." The beautiful irony is that she means it as a "Well Done, Son!" Guy moment, whereas Andy interprets this as a sign that she has crossed the Moral Event Horizon.
  • Not What I Signed Up For:
    • Subverted with Andy. Although she didn't sign up for any bit of the job.
    • Played straight with Miranda's many husbands. They didn't realize that she would be Married to the Job.
  • Oh, Crap!: Miranda's demands often produce this reaction in whoever is expected to carry them out.
  • Parents as People: Something that Miranda laments in a private moment to Andy after her husband wants a divorce. Because she's Married to the Job she can't attend to her marriage as well as she can to her work, and as a result her girls suffer from the number of stepfathers they gain and lose.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Andy calls Emily to offer her some of the clothing she was given by various designers while in Paris.
    • A more classic example (in that it comes from someone who one might fully expect to do something nasty,) is Miranda giving Andy a glowing recommendation for her next job (the one she actually wanted to begin with,) even though she quit unexpectedly, leaving Miranda in a potentially awkward position, right after Miranda had given her some genuinely sincere praise and said she thought Andy could have a bright future in the fashion industry.
  • Pet Homosexual: Averted with Nigel. He does give Andy a makeover, thereby saving her from herself, and he is Tall, Dark, and Snarky, but he's also much higher up the ladder than she is, as well as legitimately older and wiser, offers guidance in her career only, and doesn't hover around her like he has nothing better to do than make sure her life is running like clockwork.
  • Plucky Office Girl: Andy herself is this.
  • Poor Communication Kills: It really feels like a lot of problems between Andy and Nate (and her friends) could have been solved with one conversation early on about what the job was going to entail, so there were no surprises.
  • Power Hair: Miranda, again.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: A lot of critics praised the film and claimed it improved on the book - most notably making Miranda more sympathetic.
  • Pretty in Mink: Miranda wears quite a few fur coats and wraps as part of showing her wealth.
  • Product Placement: Roughly 60% of the movie — 90% if you watch it with the DVD commentary.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Andy seems to get nothing but these — first from her coworkers for not taking her job seriously, then from her friends for taking her job too seriously.
  • Sadist: The psychological version; Miranda's viciousness frequently goes far beyond the necessity of keeping things running smoothly, and she seemed to be positively relishing Andy's reaction to the impossible task she set her in addition to her normal stressful duties.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Nate has this initial reaction when he sees Andy's makeover.
  • Shoot the Messenger: Emily gives Andy a "The Reason You Suck" Speech for telling her that Miranda wants Andy to go to Paris instead of Andy, which leads to Emily getting into an accident.
  • Soft-Spoken Sadist: Miranda's voice gets positively gentle right when she's at her most horrible.
  • So Proud of You: After Andy repeatedly incurs Miranda's displeasure to warn her about the attempt to replace her, Miranda says she was "very, very impressed" by Andy's efforts, coming as close as she ever does to thanking her or acknowledging how tempting it might have been to let Miranda suffer.
  • Spoiled Brat: What little we see of Miranda's children suggests they might be this.
  • Squee!: The prospect of going to Paris immediately turns the stuffy and bitchy Emily into a star-struck teenager.
  • Survival Mantra: "I love my job. I love my job. I love my job" seems to be Emily's way of staving off a complete breakdown.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: A variant: Nate breaks up with Andy because Lily tells him that Christian kissed Andy (on the cheek) and says that she has changed too much, essentially accusing her of cheating. Only, now that Nate's broken up with her, Andy is now available to date Christian and goes out with him in Paris.
  • Tomboyish Name: Andrea goes by the nickname "Andy". Miranda and Emily always use the full name, presumably because their line of work prefers the more sophisticated feminine name.
  • Tranquil Fury: Icy, controlled annoyance seems to be Miranda's default state, but she never raises her voice even when truly furious.
  • Troll: Caroline and Cassidy by telling Andy she could go up the stairs in Miranda's house. It could very well have cost her her job.
  • Vetinari Job Security: Miranda clearly thinks she's irreplaceable. By the end of the film we realise that she's absolutely right, and could produce a long list of people who promised to quit Runway and follow her if she ever left the magazine.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Andy starts out as one, fresh out of Northwestern.
  • With Friends Like These...: Andy's friends and boyfriend. They gladly accept the gifts she gives them (courtesy of her job at Runway), but in the same breath "playfully" steal her phone while it is ringing and toss it between them, with her boss on the line — an act which could easily get Andy fired.
  • The Woman Wearing the Queenly Mask: Miranda regrets how her high-stress lifestyle is negatively affecting the lives of her children, but acknowledges that it's a result of the choices she's made and won't complain about her own problems.

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