As you probably already know, MySQL 8.0 supports Unicode 9.0 and our default charset moved from latin1 to utf8mb4.
I didn’t know the answer and had to play with it, here is the outcome of these tests.
First let’s try to use the standard MySQL client and paste the dophin emoji from emojipedia:
So we can see that the input is decoded (codepoints) but the ouptut is indeed the 🐬 (dolphin).
Now if you try to just use the codepoints by typing them directly in the string what does happen ?
As you can see, you can’t type it yourself. If you want to insert an emoji, you need to use the emoji by pasting it.
On the new MySQL Shell, emojis are also visible as such in the input:
Voilà ! Now you have more info on how emojis are handled in the MySQL clients.