I know I sound cliché and I know that this has been said over and over and over again by many people and better writers than myself but I can’t get enough of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Ever since I was assigned to read the classic for my eleventh grade English class in high school, I have been hooked.
What exactly is it about Pride and Prejudice that gets me every time? Where do I start? First, there’s the language (I mean what girl wouldn’t melt if a guy tells her how much he ardently admires and loves her and can’t repress his feelings anymore?), the time period (where women wore flowing empire waist dresses – which to me I would be more than happy to put on as it would hide my not so thin mid-section rather nicely), the pageantry of the balls where men and women actually danced together and talked and twirled around in a circle (instead of trying to yell out a conversation over loud blaring techno music at a club), to the art form of matchmaking and the courtship (walking across gardens, meadows, fields and getting together for picnics, poetry readings or piano concertos.)
And then there is Mr. Darcy. Who doesn’t love Mr. Darcy? Yes, at first he comes across as rude and unpolished and stuck up but then, just like an onion, we start peeling down the layers to Fitzwilliam and we see that he is gentle, kind and compassionate-a decent man who values integrity and is loyal to his friends and family to a fault. What also attracts me to Darcy is that he is strong. I like a man who takes control of a situation, defending the woman he loves despite what his family or society says. The fact that he has more money than Donald Trump is also an added bonus. I’m not shallow-just being honest here.
I’ve written before about my love of romantic comedies and I think a lot of that comes from Pride and Prejudice. While it is true that it is not meant to be a comedy, a lot of movies have taken the Pride and Prejudice formula and have made it work in comedy. Woman meets obnoxious man, she hates him at first, only to find that it is only a façade and he is really deep down a wonderful guy, they get to know each other, fall in love and they live happily ever after. It’s the plotline to some of the most classic and memorable movies and if you don’t believe me, check my first blog on the Top 60 Romantic Comedies Movies and see if you can’t spot the same formula in most of the films listed.
So, will you find me reading Pride and Prejudice for the fifteen hundredth time? Absolutely! In fact, I’ve already downloaded it to my Kindle and Nook. Will I be popping in the BBC miniseries with Colin Firth into my DVD player on a Saturday night to watch with my bowl of popcorn? Without a doubt and pausing when I reach the lake scene with Darcy in a wet clinging white shirt. Will I ever get tired of the story that has been and will continue to be remade and rewritten into modern day comedies, teen movies, erotica or paranormal books and fan fiction with alternative endings? Nope! In fact, I say, keep them coming. I am only too happy to keep revisiting Pemberly and the love story of Fitzwilliam Darcy and Miss Elizabeth Bennett. It’s a love affair that I dare say will follow me until the end of my days.