To think Marianne shouldn't have married Colonel Brandon?

(441 Posts)
squoosh Wed 21-Aug-13 23:45:32

Okay Willoughby was a cad and a bounder and took himself out of the running, but I do think that Brandon swooped in to take advantage of her rain induced fever which had left her a bit dazed and compliant.

It's a bit creepy that he falls in love with her because she reminds him of his long lost, 'fallen', dead love. Plus he's a bit intense, the laughs wouldn't be forthcoming and I'll warrant he expected her to do all kinds of dark shit in the bedroom.

Ideally she'd have had another couple of seasons in London and met lots of nice suitors or maybe even nipped across to Pride and Prejudice and married that nice Colonel Fitzwilliam.

kickassangel Wed 21-Aug-13 23:51:37

Fitzwilliam a good suggestion.

But there was a bit of a thing about women suddenly becoming all mature and sensible after a health scare, so Marianne fits that.

But I never really believed she lived him. I figured that she settled.

Sophita Wed 21-Aug-13 23:57:59

I am torn on this because when I picture Colonel Brandon as Alan Rickman, it's all fine and dandy and it clearly means Marianne ends up with a much better sex life than poor Elinor because urgh Hugh Grant

but just going on the book, you're right, it is sad and she is settling.

in a way though, I like that about Jane Austen - she doesn't do trite happy ever after, she does address what it was really like for women getting married in that time

Peacocklady Thu 22-Aug-13 00:00:50

I like to think she grew to genuinely love him! I love that film. Willoughby's cheekbones, her sister sobbing at her bedside, Hugh Lawrie's sarcasm, all of it!

YouTheCat Thu 22-Aug-13 00:01:35

Colonel Fitzwilliam was married.

I think Marianne needs Brandon to stop her from making an utter tit of herself.

LanguageTimothy Thu 22-Aug-13 00:07:18

Quite frankly Brandon was settling.

Good looking

He was a catch. Marianne was quite frankly a flibberty gibbit that most of us would have wanted to give a good slap.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 00:09:27

But he was dull and earnest and fatherly.

And yes she was a flibberty gibbet, but she could have had some good scandalous fun!

Sophita Thu 22-Aug-13 00:11:29

But Marianne was only sixteen at the beginning of the book and he was a grown up - I know different time and standards, but that's still a hell of a gap in life experience and temperament.

YouTheCat Thu 22-Aug-13 00:12:01

She would have ended up doing something spectacularly damning and ended up without a husband!!! shock

I always felt that Marianne was a bit of an idiot, totally hooked on 'romance'. Then she woke up to reality; seeing Willoughby for what he was allowed her to see (and appreciate) Brandon for what he was. Even if she remained idiot romance-hooked Marianne, Brandon's back-story would be totally romantic, so making him attractive to her.

LanguageTimothy Thu 22-Aug-13 00:12:15

Hmm, still think I'd have been itching to give her what for.

Still much as I love JA her men don't really do it for me.

Rochester now....

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 00:13:34

Oh yeah Rochester was a real catch, aside from his teeny tiny secret.

LanguageTimothy Thu 22-Aug-13 00:13:55

My DH is quite like Rochester now that I think about it...

Without the mad first wife of course unless that's me

YouTheCat Thu 22-Aug-13 00:14:02

I like the fact the, mainly, JA's male characters require a woman to make them a better person.

Darcy - I'm looking at you. grin

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 00:15:09

I think Marianne needs Brandon to stop her from making an utter tit of herself"


Oh, and why hasn't Emma Thompson done Emma?

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 00:16:37

I wouldn't have minded marrying Bingley. Pots of cash, lots of fun, kind hearted, not overly burdened with heavy thoughts.

Lot to be said for being able to have a laugh with someone when spending many looooong winter evenings together in draughty country houses.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 00:17:42

Now that I think of it, Brandon should have married Marianne's Mum.

VileWoman Thu 22-Aug-13 00:22:32

I was just thinking about this. it's a long time since I read the book but I think Emma Thompson signposts the relationship with Brandon more than JA did, so in the book it feels even worse than settling, it's just JA tying up the loose plot lines. Of course because I was a young flippity jibbit myself when I last read it I couldn't see why Brandon was attractive at all whereas as an adult I think AR is damn sexy (admittedly I don't think I'd kick Greg Wise out of bed either!).

Marianne is the equivalent of your teenage friend who falls in love with someone across the dance floor of the nightclub, sighs with angst and follows him round all the time (dragging you with her to places he is going to be, because they are meant to be together).

Saying how "sensitive" & "misunderstood" he is, texts him hundreds of times with no answer & then agonises & overanalyses any tiny bit of attention he gives her. Stalks him on Facebook, tries to find out who every single female is in his photos...
(Can you tell I knew someone like this?!)

ILoveAFullFridge Thu 22-Aug-13 00:23:03

Nah, Marianne's a flighty, thoughtless, flibbertygibbet, who would fall for any man who paid her intense attention. Brandon couldn't get a look-in until she was stuck convalescing.

(As for the film - eurgh [shudders] dreadful casting. Emma T far too old to play Elinor.)

sicutlilium Thu 22-Aug-13 00:24:15

I'm re-reading Jane Eyre after a gap of 25 years, and what I find really strains credibility is that, when she flees from the sham wedding, of all the doorsteps in all the world the one she lands on belongs to her long-lost cousins.

Oh and she'd tell you herself how deep and intellectual she is - there would be copious use of the phrase "true to myself" and little real thought for others.

I liked Kate Winslet in the part, i thought she garnered a lot if sympathy for Marianne, but the older I get the more the character annoys me!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 00:26:41

I love that LanguageTimothy has resurrected 'flibbertigibbet'!

AphraBehn Thu 22-Aug-13 00:27:50

Col Fitzwilliam wasn't married, he was just expected as a younger son to marry an heiress (which is why he couldn't seriously persue Lizzy Bennet even though he quite fancied her). Marianne wouldn't have been rich enough for him either.

David Morrissey played Col Brandon as well, he didn't seem old.

springytoofs Thu 22-Aug-13 00:28:07

I saw Willoughby in my village once. He was wearing a baseball cap and dodging his head about so ridiculously as if to say 'don't recognise me! I'm famous!' that he draw attention to himself.

anyway, Willoughby and Miss Dashwood are an item now. Married, I think.

Colonel Brandon doesn't pronounce his words properly I find - sort of doesn't use his lips. And all that touching of furniture in his distress business, very annoying, very Prince Charles.

Hugh Grant, just how irritating was he?! 'My heart....... will always and ever be .......................................................................................yours. Plus he looked about 12.

Mind you, Emma Thompson's sobbing was pretty good, I thought. All that pent of tension!

AphraBehn Thu 22-Aug-13 00:31:04

Onthebottom I know someone exactly like Isabella Thorpe from Northanger Abbey. Jane Austen observed these types well!

Sophita Thu 22-Aug-13 00:31:11

I do think it's really interesting how your view of a book changes as you get older with it - I've just been going back to 'Persuasion' and this time it has really hit close to home because I'm now the same age as poor, lost-her-bloom, on-the-shelf Anne... no sign of my own Captain Wentworth yet, worse luck!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 00:34:53

Oh how I love Persuasion. I do wince a bit at the 'lost bloom' references then frantically check my reflection and praise the lord for the Gods named Clarins, Nars and Chanel.

Sparklysilversequins Thu 22-Aug-13 00:38:52

Didn't anyone see the TV version with David Morrissey as Brandon? He was utterly scrumptious and Marianne should have thanked her lucky stars that he was into her!

Sophita Thu 22-Aug-13 00:42:23

squoosh - ha, that's true - we do have some 21st century advantages (can you imagine how much Anne's dad would have spent on crème de la mer if he'd had the chance smile )

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 00:42:36

Merely Gowlands, my dear Squoosh, surely?

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 01:20:27

I wouldn't have stood a chance as a Georgian lady, only some terrifying lotion that probably melted ten layers from your face and some twigs and dust to clean my teeth.

Oh I'd have made a good match with some lucky, elderly toothless vicar!

Dominodonkey Thu 22-Aug-13 03:25:04

Totally agree about David morrissey- it was much more convincing with him as a sexy older man- especially as dough faced Dominic cooper played willoughby.

I played marianne a few years ago and my Brandon was rather old, short and lacking in looks. When I accepted his proposal on stage I actually heard someone in the audience say 'oh no! What a shame'

If 'tis a question of bint from Titanic + baddie from Die Hard, it is all right, or rather, there is an imbalance in the other direction.

Otherwise it's a horrible match for the ardent young woman, but I always thought that was Austen's point.

hackmum Thu 22-Aug-13 07:27:32

YANBU. It's always bothered me too. Colonel Brandon is much too old. And I never felt really happy about Emma marrying Mr Knightley.

Yeah, I hate the bit where Knightley says he's had his eye on he since she was thirteen.

I do like Austen's women, but her men...

LurcioLovesFrankie Thu 22-Aug-13 07:48:24

But aren't you making the mistake of assuming that Jane Austen is nothing more than a romantic novelist? My edition of P&P has a v. good foreword which points out that she's actually interested in investigating marriage in all its forms from the good to the very bad (Charlotte and Mr. collins, for instance) against a backdrop of a society where marriage is a woman's only career option, and her choices for even that limited option are almost completely constrained by her family's social standing, income and looks. Of course Marianne settles - but so would most women, and they'd have counted themselves lucky to get a Col. Brandon rather than a Mr. Collins. I know the pinkification and chick-lit-iffication of her as an author has been a recent fashion, but there's a bloody good reason she's counted as a great novelist and writers of chick list aren't

pianodoodle Thu 22-Aug-13 07:54:27

It's ages since I read the book so I can only picture Alan Rickman now (not always a bad thing)

The film makes it seem like she falls for him in the end but I don't know if the book does.

I love Dawn French's impression of Emma Thompson in The Vicar of Dibley grin

RooRooTaToot Thu 22-Aug-13 08:09:15

IMO you are not meant to feel entirely satisfied with Brandon and Marianne. The way she had carried on with Willoughby in public, combined with her poverty, meant that she couldn't be rewarded for it.

Austen was kind to her, but first Marianne had to 'die' and be reborn as a different kind of person to make her deserving of Brandon.

Marianne could have ended up like her other characters who were immodest - left living with Mrs Norris, so shackled to an irresponsible feckless husband who gambles, whores and looks at her eventually with indifference.

Brandon was given a chance to save her, the way he couldn't save his ward, in the only way that he could.

RooRooTaToot Thu 22-Aug-13 08:13:51

* or shackled, not 'so'

Mitzyme Thu 22-Aug-13 08:26:49

I'm re-reading works of JA on Kindle, not quite the same as a book, but that might just be me. Dam kids bought me one so I have to use it.
I agree JA's men leave somewhat to be desired but they didn't have to try did they. They had the money, lands, someone always matchmaking on their behalf.
Ah but Knightly. I'd do him. In a very JA kind of way of course.

I don't think Austen can claim to be a truly great novelist. She's not up there in depth and realism with, say, George Eliot- but then, who is? But I digress...

I agree that we are supposed to feel saddened at the marriage of Marianne and Brandon. Like Dobbin and Amelia in Thackeray's "Vanity Fair"... they are both worthy enough people, but it's not love's young dream. For Dobbin, it all came too late. Sigh.

19th century novels are the bestest.

I've read Emma Thompson's filming diary. She did worry she was too old.
Also the sobbing bit - she drew on what happened to her when her father died nd she had to go to the bank to sort stuff out and completely broke down. So if it looks 'real' - it is basically. Very Stanislavski.

hackmum Thu 22-Aug-13 08:53:58

Oh, Austen is undoubtedly a great novelist, imho. FR Leavis (and I know his opinion doesn't count for much these days) named her as one of the five great English language novelists. The really striking thing about her is that she is so very different from the novelists before her - she paved the way for people like Eliot. It still seems amazing to me that she achieved all that without any formal education, without mixing with other writers, without really having any support at all. She was a rare instance of someone who is just naturally brilliant.

GrandstandingBlueTit Thu 22-Aug-13 08:59:50

Austen is a great novelist.

Her use of the English language, and her dialogue, is incredible. Her characterisation is fabulous and her social observations are brilliant.

There's more than one way to be a great writer, but if you ask me, mastery of the language is right up there as a defining aspect.

RooRooTaToot Thu 22-Aug-13 09:03:39

I recommend Frances Burney's Evelina. She was one of Austen's influences. Wonderful epistle novel. There is even a cad called Willoughby and Lord Orville has a lot of Darcy qualities. You can see where Austen got some of her inspiration for Northanger Abbey as well.

biryani Thu 22-Aug-13 09:08:30

Agree Austen is very much not a romantic novelist. I think the point of her novels is not the great romantic ending, but the compromises women had to make in order to survive financially. So Marianne makes do with Brandon.

Austen's obervations are pointed and often cruel in her letters, although many were destroyed, perhaps by her relatives to preserve her reputation.

soverylucky Thu 22-Aug-13 09:10:55

I do get what you mean but I always feel that Marianne grew to love Col. Brandon - like she grew up and realised that true long lasting love is based on much more that what she had with Willoughby.

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 09:25:52

love Austen but don't like her heroines. Marianne narcissistic, Eleanor dull, Emma smug, Anne Goody goody, Fanny mental to pass up sexy Henry for dull as ditch water Edmund and Elizabeth and Jane Bennett boring, and to good to be true.

I think other characters are more real, Lydia Bennett, Charlotte Lucas, Harriet Smith, Mary Crawford, Maria Lucas.

it's the sex though. as soon as the sexuals are done out of wedlock then its curtains and ruin which I suppose was pretty much right for the time.

my favourite is Charlotte Lucas who I think somehow murders Mr Collins and lives to a grand old age happy and content in not having to ever again please a man.

springytoofs Thu 22-Aug-13 09:46:15

Marianne narcissistic, my foot. She's young, headstrong and true, which is why her more cautious sister values her so dearly. But she, Marianne, has to be bitten by the realities of life to be truly 'proved' - and a bit more like her sensible sibling. Then she realises the important things in life eg someone also true, and good, ie C Brandon.

I should imagine JA sold all the young women up the swanny at the time, with all that marrying a good and true rich man. A bit like the Jackie mag of that day.

cardamomginger Thu 22-Aug-13 09:48:37

But that's Alan Rickman at his sexiest!

YANBU - Marianne can sod off and Colonel Brandon Alan Rickman can sweep me of my feet grin.

Figgygal Thu 22-Aug-13 09:50:02

I'm with others in the Alan rickman front he was so dashing

kickassangel Thu 22-Aug-13 09:51:24

If you think about it, Austen was quite anti the love's young dream thing.

None of her heroines meet and marry in that frame of mind, they all go through some kind of transformation which brings them some maturity, so that they enter marriage with a much better understanding and not just expecting some great romantic whoosh to sweep them along.

Makes you wonder if that was what she was looking for when she had her overnight engagement, someone that gave her a whoosh, followed by waking up and knowing that the two of them would get on.

I like to think she was as vulnerable to romance as the rest of us, but she also really argues for self knowledge and relationships founded on respect.

cardamomginger Thu 22-Aug-13 09:51:37

Changed my mind. Just googled him and I've gone off him shock. How did that happen confused?

RooRooTaToot Thu 22-Aug-13 09:59:09

There is a warning for Elinor as well. She nearly loses Edward by being too sensible and cautious.

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:01:43

You're all leaving out Mansfield Park, for the jolly good reason that Fanny Price is a weedy madam who makes Katy out of What Katy Did look like an asbo kid. She is the only one of Austen's heroines that deserves a kick in the pants and is lucky to marry anyone!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 22-Aug-13 10:14:51

Marianne is not a narcissist, she is a teenager!

TheCraicDealer Thu 22-Aug-13 10:17:16

Anyone see Clueless on E4 last night? Paul Rudd as modern-Mr-Knightly. Babe.

Feel sorry for Charlotte Lucas. At the end of P&P there's a bit where they say she's prego (but not in such crass terms). That means either she had had sex with Mr Collins [shudder] or had had a torrid affair with one of Lady De Bourgh's footmen.

Grumpla Thu 22-Aug-13 10:18:51

Please god let it have been the footman.

And surely Mr Collins died of gout in the head almost immediately after the book ends. SURELY!

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:21:27

PD James wrote a crime Pemberley novel, "Death comes to Pemberley", and one of the worst things about it was that Mr Collins is still alive and well throughout it, and blahing on as normal. Poor Charlotte.

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 10:21:32

Absolutely about Marianne being a teenager, not a narcissist! I think that comes out beautifully in the film, with Mrs D and Elinor and the others laughing at her a little and teasing her and her stropping off.

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 10:22:29

"PD James wrote a crime Pemberley novel, "Death comes to Pemberley", and one of the worst things about it was that Mr Collins is still alive and well throughout it, and blahing on as normal. Poor Charlotte."

I don't think that's actually the worst thing about that book...........!

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:23:42

I know, I stuck with it but I really hated it. What on earth posessed her to try to write it! It was like an Austen car crash by the end, I read on to see how bad it would get.

TheCraicDealer Thu 22-Aug-13 10:25:22

My Mum got me this for Christmas one year when I was about 17. I think she says "Jane Austen" on the cover and went for it, rather than thinking it would offer some useful life lessons.

Anyway, chapter two is entitled "Don't Put Your Feelings On Public Display Unless They're Fully Reciprocated". Then she tells you what a div Marianne is.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 22-Aug-13 10:25:44

Mr Knightley is lovely.

'Marry me, my darling friend' <sigh>

Paul Rudd was good, as was Jeremy Northam. Johnny Lee Miller could have been good but seemed to close in age to Romala Gari for that to work in quite the same way.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 10:25:48

I love Charlotte Lucas, ok so she had to give Mr Collins his conjugals but she gets her own home to run and her own sitting room, and she hardly sees him from one end of the day to the other.

Love the idea of Mr Collins meeting an early grave and Charlotte being an independent woman even if it's of modest means.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 10:26:06

Fanny Price is a fanny.

Grumpla Thu 22-Aug-13 10:26:10

I stopped after the first couple of paragraphs pages.

I love PD James usually, it was just so WRONG.

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 10:27:25

I didn't leave out Fanby price.. she was a prat to marry boring Edmund and not sexy Henry!!

and re Marianne a teenager and a narcissist are as one.

I could do the dirty sexuals with Alan Rickman any day.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 10:27:48

I tried to read Death Comes to Pemberley, I failed.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 10:29:06

Although I read that the BBC are adapting Death Comes to Pemberley as part of their Christmas scheduling and I'm pretty sure I'll watch it.

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:30:08

Squoosh, when we did Mansfield Park at school, "Fanny" became a term of abuse. She's so wrong for a heroine.
Grumpla: me too. I love her crime stuff, I really wanted Pemberley to be good, but it really really was not. Even reintroducing Wickham, bad boy sexiness on legs, was a faliure. Although I would pay good money to see a mini-series based around Lydia and Wickham post Pride and Prejudice. It would be bad/good, like the Tudors was bad/ good. In fact, I will spend the next ten minutes casting Wickham and Lydia in my head......

motherinferior Thu 22-Aug-13 10:32:14

Thing is, if Colonel B is indeed the divine Rickman then she is clearly going to have a whale of a time in the bedroom if nowhere else...

That would be nice, for Charlotte.

Fanny Price makes me want to slap her. Anne Elliott is fabulous, though I am now not the teenager I was who first marvelled at how someone that incredibly old could still be fancied...

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 10:34:29

I did enjoy 'lost in Austen' daft but funny.

I also preferred the more recent portrayal of Mrs Bennett in the film rather than the TV series.

. I loved her character as she was doing the best she could for her girls, at the time, marrying them off. Austen was very unforgiving about her.

MummytoMog Thu 22-Aug-13 10:34:32

If I had been Marianne, I would have made Willoughby marry me. MADE HIM. Alan Rickman is only hunky as the Sheriff of Nottingham, he's frankly creepy in S&S. Emma is the Austen heroine I identify with most, and Mr Knightley is swoonsome. But Greg's cheekbones cannot be denied...

Paul Rudd is scrummy too. OH is away tonight. I may have to have an Austen-fest.

hamdangle Thu 22-Aug-13 10:34:47

Sense and sensibility has always been one of my favourite novels and for some weird reason I think it's because there isnt really a happy ending in this one Marianne bangs on about everything and nothing giving her opinion on love, art, nature etc every five minutes throughout the whole novel but has the enthusiasm beaten out of her by the end.

When it describes her final match with Brandon, Austen gives a long list of reasons why it's such a perfect match and then says something like 'and how could Marianne think otherwise?' But you never actually hear her voice again. She never tells the reader how she feels.

It always made me feel sad but for some reason I've always loved that book the most.

And also because Fanny Price does need a giant kick up the arse.

curlew Thu 22-Aug-13 10:35:39

But Wickham isn't "bad boy sexiness on legs". He's a nasty little mean minded money grubbing oik with a taste for very young girls.That's the point!.

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:39:26

Now I am 42 I love Anne Elliot, when I first read the book at 17 I couldn't believe anyone would fancy such an old trout. Time changes everything...... I understand Charlotte much more now, too.

Out of all them, Fanny is first in line for a punch, and then Emma: she's a frenemy if ever there was one.

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:40:30

Nope, I know he's mean and nasty, but in my head, Wickham is still quite fanciable. He'd have to be killer looking for Elizabeth to even consider it, given that she's quite bright.

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:42:11

See, now you've got me thinking of just how sexy Wickham would have to be to make ELizabeth fancy him. Ben Chaplin in fancy trousers.

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 10:42:12

Alan Rickman is even sexy as Snape. his voice!!

but agree MummyToMog Emma is my favourite too as much more real than the others. Fanny Price is a daft bat.

Charlotte Lucas defiantly triumphs as Mr Collins dies trying to save the carriage if Lady Lucas and her daughter who all die in the same accident.

thus she is complete mistress of her home and no annoying neighbours.

Does anyone else find that since Kate and Emma played Elinor and Marianne, whoever is cast afterwards is still somehow always Kate and Emma with different names?

I can't decide if it's because they fit so well in the book or because people just can't imagine Elinor and Marianne differently now.

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 10:45:40

Emma as a frennemy.. yes excellent. Harriet Smith probably should have punched her.

Does anyone remember Sylvestra Le Touzel's Fanny in the 80s Mansfield Park?

There was a great outtake on It'll Be Alright On The Night 756 where Fanny is visiting her family in Portsmouth. She is standing wistfully on the sea wall when the old Sealink Isle of Wight ferry appears in the background. grin

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 10:55:27

I'm going to have to google that blooper!

In my head, because I am old, all my Austen heros are basically Cary Grant, Clause Raines, and the like, although I must admit Mark Strong was jolly nice. But I agree that Kate and Emma have rather overawed all the other ladies. I really wish there had been earlier adaptations with people like Helen Mirren as Elizabeth. Elizabeth Taylor as Elizabeth, can you imagine! I can't really think of other modern middle aged actresses who would have the power to play Anne Elliot well.

Harriet Smith, that poor girl. We all knew someone like that at school, friends with a frenemy who walked all over them, for years. She should have decked her one, you're right.

S&S is my fave as well - and I agree, it never seemed like a happy ending to me. The text never implies that Marianne's fieriness is a bad thing which needs to be suppressed, or that Willoughby's caddishness is its natural result or some kind of just punishment, so her suppression is unsettling.

Oh my God, Emma is a Wendy!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 11:05:53

Captain Wentworth for me please!


TheCraicDealer Thu 22-Aug-13 11:18:16

Oh dear god, yes. I'd have a go on his schooner any day.

HumphreyCobbler Thu 22-Aug-13 11:30:37

I LIKE Fanny Price. She is naturally timid but has principles. She has been in love with Edmund for a long time, whilst I agree that Henry is superficially sexier and personally Edmund doesn't really do it for me, Fanny was right to stick with her original choice.

Mansfield Park is my favourite JA. It took me a few years to come to that conclusion as I liked P and P best in my teens.

I do think Captain Wentworth is the the most appealing hero though. "I am half agony, half hope...."

ppeatfruit Thu 22-Aug-13 11:47:06

So no one would recommend James's Death Comes to Pemberley then? I had fantasised that Charlotte was gradually putting drops of arsenic in Collins' tea till he dies 'of natural causes' leaving a widow who's so upset her hair turns golden grin.

YABU BTW Marianne is lucky to get Col Brandon IMO she's such a dope!

HumphreyCobbler Thu 22-Aug-13 11:50:52

I gave up on Death Comes to Pemberly. It just was not interesting.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 11:51:09

I always had a soft spot for Tom Bertram, something very sexy about his wild ways. He was tamed by illness too.

MissPiggiesLeftTrotter Thu 22-Aug-13 11:56:43

I just had to google Flibberty Gibbert. It is my new favourite word. I know lots of them!!!!

ILoveAFullFridge Thu 22-Aug-13 12:02:38

"...Marianne ... has the enthusiasm beaten out of her by the end.

When it describes her final match with Brandon, Austen gives a long list of reasons why it's such a perfect match and then says something like 'and how could Marianne think otherwise?' But you never actually hear her voice again. She never tells the reader how she feels."

I don't think that everything JA says in on the surface. Although she is writing in her time, I think she's subtly pointing out how sad it is that a woman has to be flattened into conforming. Or maybe I'm reading it in my modern time! But I think JA is much more cynical than face value.

Greg Wise - yuck! Take those cheekbones away. Perfect casting as a slimeball. Alan Rickman - gorgeous but miscast. Makes Brandon sinister and somehow vaguely pervy. Wd have made a lovely Darcy. ( I love Darcy - the character, not the actors who play him.)

Have never read Death Comes to Pemberley so can't comment on how 'bad' it is, but if anyone is interested they are making a TV series. Anna Maxwell Martin and Matthew Rhys are in it...

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 12:04:59

Anna Maxwell Martin is a great actor, loved her in Bleak House and The Bletchley Circle, she'll make a good Lizzie.

Not read the whole thread yet but had to jump in and tell you that yabvvvvvvvvvvvvvu. I'd be v happy to get up to 'dark shit in the bedroom' with him, personally. smile

CJCregg Thu 22-Aug-13 12:19:33

I am marking my place as I don't have time to read the whole thread at the moment.

BUT - I will just say that, having had any number of doomed teenage romances with latter day Willoughbys, I am going to sit DD down with book and/or film of S&S at the appropriate age and hope that she might just pick up that handsome shits are Just Not Worth It.

VileWoman Thu 22-Aug-13 12:24:35

Agree Ja is cynical, the Victorians hated her didn't they because they found her cold. Although I do think she now suffers a bit from the Austenites who are obsessed with her, she's revered rather than respected. Or maybe it's because the books are so perfect (and every chicklit trashy novel is cesperately trying to be Austen-like) that her skill is underestimated. Or maybe it's because she is a woman.

And I think it is precisely because Marianne is such a romantic that Brandon is able to ultimately 'catch' her. He has loved her pretty much since first setting eyes on her, he has a romantic and v sad past and he brings her mother to her when she is sick which to one of M's feelings would have been akin to rescuing her from savages.

She learns to love him, precisely because he is faithful and romantic and because she is a romantic, imho - "Marianne could never love by halves; and her whole heart became, in time, as much devoted to her husband, as it had once been to Willoughby."

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 12:33:20

I walked past Willoughby/Greg Wise in Covent Garden a few months ago. He looked slightly less dashing in a baseball cap.

Fillyjonk75 Thu 22-Aug-13 12:35:33

When I was 20 and saw it I thought she was "settling" for Brandon, and fancied Greg Wise myself much more than Alan Rickman. The ending really pissed me off! When I saw it more recently I thought Brandon was much hotter, how lovely he was in general and realised she had properly fallen for him.

A bit like my own experiences, I met DH when I was 23 and he is very much a Brandon type. But I had fun with a few Willoughbies before that- glad I didn't marry any of them though...

Wabbitty Thu 22-Aug-13 12:37:17

Everyone is forgetting about Catherine out of Northanger Abbey. Surely that is "loves young dream"?

I have always thought that Cassandra talked Jane out of her engagement as Cassandra didn't want to be single when Jane was married.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 12:42:38

I agree that JA didn’t try to idealise marriage, she wasn't a romantic novelist, and demonstrated plenty of examples of mean, bickering relationships. But with Marianne, I just feel Brandon swooped in when she was at her most vulnerable. He’s intense and brooding without being sexy. The sort of man who’d hover in doorways spying on her, snoop on her private correspondence and feel threatened by any passing young buck.

He’s like a big fat thumb squashing the life and spirit out of her.

mateysmum Thu 22-Aug-13 12:49:23

As someone said up thread, marriage in Jane Austen is not solely about romantic love as the basis for a successful marriage. There are many other reasons why people marry and often these are just as important as love. Austen was a realist who understood the plight of middle and upper class women for whom the only respectable future is marriage. Most of her heroines have to learn something about themselves before they can earn a loving marriage - Lizzy has to let go of her prejudices, Emma her superiority and arrogance, Marianne her excessive sensibility. Austen did not approve of "wildness" almost all her "bad" characters are reckless in some way.

Charlotte Lucas is on the shelf, she has to marry to acquire "an establishment", so even Mr Collins is preferable to a life looking after her siblings and then her aged parents, dying an old maid.

AltogetherAndrews Thu 22-Aug-13 12:49:50

Brandon is perfect for Marianne. She wants true, deep, passionate, romantic love, and falls for Willoughby, who has all the appearance of being her romantic hero, but is false, and self centred. Once she realises the difference between what is real, and what is surface, she sees that Brandon is that man- he is capable of deep, long lasting love, he is a true romantic!

I always thought the problem would be Christmas down the Brandon house. Marianne sitting down to dinner with her husband, his ward, and Willoughby's child must have been a bit tense.

But I would always choose Captain Wentworth with his spirit of brilliance. Yum.

Pollaidh Thu 22-Aug-13 12:53:58

No one has mentioned the Mansfield Park with Johnny Lee Miller playing Edmund. It's not exactly true to the book, it certainly has more life to it and makes Fanny seem quite decent.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 12:58:37

Billie Piper as Fanny Price was so wrong.

I mean Billie Piper in anything is wrong, but that one especially so. The Johnny Lee Miller one was better.

AphraBehn Thu 22-Aug-13 13:07:13

Johnny Lee Miller made a great Knightley as well. I believed that this was a man who would willingly spend his evenings with an elderly neighbour.

AphraBehn Thu 22-Aug-13 13:08:40

Johnny Lee Miller made a great Knightley as well. I believed that this was a man who would willingly spend his evenings with an elderly neighbour.

AphraBehn Thu 22-Aug-13 13:09:02

sorry, posted twice.

Billy Piper as Fanny was a travesty, although I do quite like her as Sally Lockhart. In fact, most of those TV ones were abominable. The S&S one copied most of the ET film but cast people who looked like pugs in most of the leading roles, and the Mansfield Park one was embarrassingly awful.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 13:10:10

I hated the Persuasion TV adaptation, but Rupert Penry-Jones as Captain Wentworth????


Oh and talking of bloody awful, Gwynnie as Emma, anyone?

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 13:11:14

'cast people who looked like pugs in most of the leading roles'

grin grin

The actress who played Elinor had the exact same voice and mannerisms as Emma Thompson. Was so odd.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 13:12:18

It's strange to see Kate Beckinsale as Emma and then see her as she is now, all boob jobs, hair extensions and Hollywood teeth.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 13:13:12

Also, back to the OP, Marianne is a doofus. She was lucky that Brandon was so forgiving!

I love Fanny Price, although reading Mansfield park as a teen, I couldn't get my head around the fact that they were cousins. Wierd.

Also, I've always preferred Jane to Lizzie.
This seems quite telling, but of what, I'm not sure blush

LOVE the KB Emma, especially the lovely little Harriet.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 13:31:06

Oh yes Dominic Cooper is hugely puggish! He also puts me in mind of a mediterranean leprechaun.


Shrugged Thu 22-Aug-13 14:09:24

To compare the novel and Ang Lee/ Emma Thompson film version is interesting.

In the novel, Colonel Brandon is definitely middle-aged (only a few years younger than Mrs Dashwood), not attractive, wears an elderly flannel waistcoat against rheumatism, etc. He's definitely never positioned as romantic hero. Clearly ET/Ang Lee knew this wouldn't fly in the modern cinema, so cast the Older But Smouldering Alan Rickman, thereby softening the fact that Marianne settles for a safe, companionate marriage, rather than the wild romantic love of the Romantics.

But the film as a whole completely inverted Austen's argument, which was pro-sense and anti-'sensibility' in the contemporary sense of hyper-responsiveness and sentimentality. For Austen, careful, conventional, reserved Elinor is right, and passionate, unconventional, passionate Marianne is wrong. But to modern readers, Elinor can look ridiculously repressed and hampered by her own stiff upper lip, whereas we tend to see Marianne's impulsive ways as those of a normal teenager.

And the Ang Lee film tweaks Austen to make her more palatable to a modern audience. Austen's semi-'punishment' of Marianne by almost killing her and marrying her off to a father figure is softened by the casting of AR, and we see repressed Elinor bursting into hysterical tears in front of her suitor, as if the moral of this story involves Elinor needing to express her emotions as much as/ even more than Marianne learning to repress hers...?

GigiDarcy Thu 22-Aug-13 14:09:26

I like the Marianne/Brandon pairing-I like to think that she realised his good qualities and that she loved him as much as her. But then I also love Emma and Knightley.
The pairing I always wanted was Mr Collins and Mary. I know the point JA seems to make about marrying for money/love, and I love that Charlotte kept Mr C in his book room facing the road or walking/gardening for beneficial exercise smile. However I do think Mary liked him, or maybe the chance to shine rather than being the plain sister?

Has anyone watched Bride and Prejudice or the Lizzie Bennet Diaries on YouTube? The latter are doing a version of Emma next.

GigiDarcy Thu 22-Aug-13 14:11:17

Oh and anyone else love the moment in the Vicar of Dibley where Geraldine is proposed to and makes the noises Elinor makes when Edward proposes?!

Shrugged Thu 22-Aug-13 14:21:10

PS to Mansfield Park fans, especially those who enjoy the witty, wicked Crawfords, there is an extremely good 'sequel' called Mansfield Revisited by Joan Aiken. its set a few years after the end of MP, sends Fanny and Edmund off to the West Indies on family business, and focuses instead on Susan Price, Fanny's sister, and reintroduces the Crawfords and Tom Bertram. I normally loathe modern sequels to classics, but this gets it very right, is completely faithful to the original, and does some very clever tweaking to plot and characters. Much recommended.

biryani Thu 22-Aug-13 14:33:30

I loved Ciaran Hinds as Wentworth. And if anyone remembers, David Rintoul as Darcy and Elizabeth Garvie as Lizzie in Pand P. I find some of those recent adaptations a bit Hollywoodish, no doubt to appeal to the American market.

racingheart Thu 22-Aug-13 14:47:45

Thursdaylast How can you hate the TV adaptation of Persuasion? It is so passionate, so tender, Amanda root is utterly bewitching as the faded but lovely Anne and Ciaran Hinds as Wentworth is heart stopping. Are we talking about the same production?

Shrugged thanks for that tip. Did MP for A level and hated it, Fanny is such a killjoy. I love Joan Aitken's writing. Bet she does a brilliant job of it.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 14:50:57

racingheart The TV version stars Rupert Penry Jones as Wentworth and Sally Hawkins (who I love) as Anne.

The one you're describing is the film version.

To be honest I like them both.

sheridand Thu 22-Aug-13 15:07:31

Ooh, will look up that Joan Aiken book! Thanks!

PMSL at Emma as a Wendy! That's just so right!

I was thinking today that I must reread them all now. I did the Bronte canon over the Summer and I think that as i've aged the Bronte men look less and less attractive and some of the more boring Austen men look better and better. It's probably that I simply don't have the energy to cope with a Heathcliff or Rochester anymore.....

Although both of them do meet together, to my mind, in the ghastly "St John episode". That character could fit equally well in either canon, and was probably related by blood to Mr Collins.

Grumpla Thu 22-Aug-13 15:29:10

Thanks for the tip Shrugged smile

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 15:42:31

Marianne is just like some of my friends who 'settled' for DHs with good jobs, safe incomes and who wash the family car on a Saturday morning and fumble through some vanilla sex on a Saturday night.

It works for them and it's as good as it's ever going to get for them.

I, however, married my Mr Willoughby. The money isn't always regular and the family car is filthy, but he more than makes up for it in the bedroom grin

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 15:53:16

Looks like Shrugged and I were in the same lectures grin

JA creates Brandon as the antithesis of the 'Romantic Hero'. In the book he's in his early middle age, wears flannel waistcoats and worries constantly about rheumatism and enjoys fly fishing.

In the book he is most definitely 'not' the intense, brooding, velvet voiced sexy older man created by Ang Lee in the film adaptation.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 15:59:05

Racingheart, I don't think we are talking about the same one, thanks squoosh!

The end of the one I'm talking about has Anne, who I believe is deliberately NOT overtly passionate, running down the streets of Bath to find Wentworth. This wasn't in the book, and isn't even a fitting bit of artistic licence IMO. There were other annoyances that I can't recall now.

Anne is my fave, Persuasion is my fave, Wentworth is my fave. envyenvyenvyenvyenvy

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 16:00:00

Wentworth would be amazing in bed! Just amazing.

WickedBitch grin
I married a willoughby too. Sadly he is just too rakish and irresponsible to remain married to but the thought of a colonel Brandon makes my fanny shrivel so I'd rather stay single and have a couple of willoughbies on standby for fun and games.

<disclaimer Alan rickman is divine, just not to much in that character>

so much! Not to much.

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 16:06:25

EhricLovesTeamQhuay luckily my Mr Willoughy stays just the right side of being too rakish and irresponsible, although he drives me crazy at times. But he drives me crazy in good ways too, so it evens out grin

ppeatfruit Thu 22-Aug-13 16:08:17

IMO Mr. Knightley would be an extremely considerate lover (actually thinking about him he's too good to be true).We don't know if he's ever had a GF or not do we?

hermioneweasley Thu 22-Aug-13 16:11:42

I woukd happily do "dark shit" in the bedroom with Alan Rickman.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 16:12:08

I'm sure Mr Knightley had assignations with famous actresses of the day and other similarly unsuitable ladies.

ppeatfruit Thu 22-Aug-13 16:12:38

Gwyn Paltrow was not the correct actress for Emma neither was Romola Garai,who IMO makes a log seem animated, but at least she has the correct english nuances to her speech.

ppeatfruit Thu 22-Aug-13 16:15:10

squoosh I don't suppose JA would 've mentioned that type of thing when you think how the secret engagement of frank Churchill is viewed!!!

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 16:19:02

Wentworth def a beast.
All that practising whilst away in the navy.

I'm afraid Rickman will alway be Snape to me, and no matter how much his last chapter broke my heart, I just couldn't!

In fact apart from Darcy and Wentworth, they're all not QUITE right are they? I alway thought Knightly old, Willoughby too much of a cad for me, Mansfield Park has no good men.

I quite liked Donald Sutherland's Mr Bennett NOT LIKE THAT!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 16:23:50

Oh I know, if a secret engagement can create such a rumpus I don't know how the people of Hampstead would have coped finding out that Mr Knightley was attending Regency swingers parties.

AphraBehn Thu 22-Aug-13 16:30:03

I've always liked Henry Tilney. There was a period when I thought he might be gay but now I get him.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Thu 22-Aug-13 16:39:25


TheOneAndOnlyFell Thu 22-Aug-13 16:43:31

springy how dare you blaspheme about that scene! That is number number 1, all-time favourite movie scene ever and I won't hear a word against it.

Actually my top three favourite movie scenes all contain Emma Thompson in various states of emotional turmoil. grin

I agree that Marianne sold herself short, and Colonel Brandon couldn't believe his luck. It would never have worked. She was too flighty and would have lead the poor old duffer a merry dance. He would have been sitting in his bath chair, looking all forlorn and impotent, gazing out across the lawn from a tall Georgian window bay, while she flirted around the clipped yews with some young whippersnapper up from London.

Fillyjonk75 Thu 22-Aug-13 16:44:48

Fair enough, I don't know anything of the book or other versions, only the Alan Rickman one. He makes everyone seem desirable, even Snape.

The only Jane Austen I have actually read is P&P, and I've only seen the 1995 BBC TV version of that, and I'm not interested in seeing any other version!

Anyway North and South with Richard Armitage is twice as good as any Jane Austen adaptation IMO.

I thought romola garai was a lovely Emma!

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 16:50:58

Anything with Richard Armitage in gets the thumbs up from me.
Including that dreadful Robin Hood

Brandon's only 35 - hardly The Age of Impotence! smile

Agree that the TV thing with Ann Elliot running through the streets of Bath is ridiculous.

Mumzy Thu 22-Aug-13 16:54:54

I reckon Marianne eventually ends up having an affair with Willoughby after marrying Colonel Brandon. Willoughby comes back 10 years later all contrite and reignites her passion. As they are making out upstairs Colonel Brandon is sat in the kitchen soaking his feet and nursing his bunions oblivious to whats happening in the drawing room.

David Rintoul and Elizabeth Garvie are my definitive Darcy and Lizzie. I think I was about 12 when I watched this 80s BBC production and the scriptwriter was Fay Weldon who was very faithful to the novel

TheOneAndOnlyFell Thu 22-Aug-13 16:56:42

No, I mean when he's older and Marianne has reached her sexual peak and is bored and frustrated. grin

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 16:58:12

I'd run through the streets of Bath to get to Captain Wentworth. Decorum be damned! I thought Sally Hawkins was a lovely Anne.

biryani Thu 22-Aug-13 16:58:45

I think Richard Armitage would have made a fab Darcy. Phwoarr!!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 16:59:49

I reckon Marianne eventually ends up having an affair with Willoughby after marrying Colonel Brandon. Willoughby comes back 10 years later all contrite and reignites her passion. As they are making out upstairs Colonel Brandon is sat in the kitchen soaking his feet and nursing his bunions oblivious to whats happening in the drawing room.

But when the affair was uncovered Colonel Brandon would exact a truly awful revenge. He'd go more than a bit unhinged.

ppeatfruit Thu 22-Aug-13 17:00:20

Oh yes Richard Armitage in North And South grin he really is fanciable. I LOVE Elizabeth Gaskell and it is said that JA paved the way for the later novelists so we have to thank her for that.

When is one's sexual peak, then? 30-ish? So Brandon will only be 48 then? Dp is 45 - he's coping well so far! grin

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 17:00:50

Sally Hawkins was a good Anne but not nearly pretty enough considering how fucking lush Rupert PJ looked.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 17:02:32

Maybe she was running through the streets looking for her 'lost bloom'.

Fillyjonk75 Thu 22-Aug-13 17:03:57

Men's sexual peak is about 17 apparently.

Poor men.

vixsatis Thu 22-Aug-13 17:05:07

Fanny and Marianne are rather alike: both pursue their "true love" romantically and regardless of social propriety or expectation (so ungrateful of Fanny not to accept Henry and get herself off Sir Thomas's books, especially when Henry really was in love with her). In Fanny's case luck turns so that everyone thinks that was the right thing to do while in Marianne's case everyone acknowledges that she was a fool.

I rather fancy Brandon, even in the book, but can't stand Edmund. Never understood why Miss Tilney wanted him

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 17:06:05

She had bad hair too, pretty lank. Still I'm sure she was a great conversationalist and a good cook grin

vixsatis Thu 22-Aug-13 17:06:42

Crawford, not Tilney

biryani Thu 22-Aug-13 17:07:17

I think that bit was daft, too. Definitely not Anne Eliot. Apparently JA altered the ending of Persuasion because of her impending death and wrapped the whole thing up a bit abruptly.

Persuasion is my favourite, I think. Seems more authentic than the others, somehow....

Miss Tilney only wanted him to 'play' with, and to prove she could have him if she wanted him, I guess.

I thought that this girl made a lovely Catherine Norland btw.


hackmum Thu 22-Aug-13 17:07:48

Going back to the subject of sequels and similar, I've just read "Longbourn" by Jo Baker, which is Pride & Prejudice from the servants' point of view. It is really good, though it does make you see P&P in a slightly new light, and most of the main characters - Darcy, Elizabeth, Mr Bennet - become much less sympathetic. She is quite kind to Charlotte and Mr Collins, though.

Fillyjonk75 Thu 22-Aug-13 17:10:23

Including that dreadful Robin Hood

There were lots of things I liked about it, not just RA. But a lot of frustrating/daft things too. I love the RH story though, I will watch any version of it. But a lot of fangirls could have written the BBC one better than the actual writers.

I think Richard Armitage would have made a fab Darcy. Phwoarr!!

YY. John Thornton is a more interesting character though IMO. And yes, in the book too. RA was maybe slightly on the young side for the BBC Darcy in 1995. He's 42 today, did you know? blush DH is 23 days older...

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 17:12:28

John Thornton lived with his mother, it would have to be a 'no' on that basis alone, add to the fact that she was a complete bat and it's a big fat no.

I do love the end scene though!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 17:13:20

hackmum I saw that advertised the other day and wondered about it, so many of these books based on Austen's novels are just awful. That one sounds quite interesting.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 17:19:23

I envy Sally Hawkins too, esp in Happy Go Lucky. But her Anne was a bit too intense I think. I kind of like the passivity of Anne, and the understated build up of their reunion.
I just wasn't keen on that production, but then I'm always critical of TV/movies made from books I love (I always watch them though grin).

That servants view of P&P sounds interesting...anyone else got any opinions on it?

I have never read a decent sequel/spin off (Emma Tennant stands out as particularly toe-curlingly awful) but am currently reading, 'Lady Catherine's Necklace' by Joan Aiken. It's actually quite amusing so far.

Fillyjonk75 Thu 22-Aug-13 17:45:42

JT supported his mum and sister after they were made destitute by his feckless dad. It was more that they were living with him than the other way round. I would get on with his mum if she were like the Sinead Cusack portrayal.

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 17:47:53

I loved Persuasion best too, as I think it was most authentic to its time.

I like that Anne was essentially very passive and accepting, and fought hard to supress her strong emotions. That's what young women in JA's time were expected to do. Being all witty and sarcastic and audacious like Elizabeth Bennet was certainly not the norm or considered 'seemly ' behaviour.

I love the fact that she genuinely believes that 'all is lost' and that she'll just fade away into middle age and spinsterhood and then at the 11th hour all her dreams finally come true.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 17:49:49

Summed it up perfectly!

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 17:52:27

'I love the fact that she genuinely believes that 'all is lost' and that she'll just fade away into middle age and spinsterhood and then at the 11th hour all her dreams finally come true.'

That's the magic of the book for me. I've just recently started re-reading it for the first time in about ten years. I love Anne so much, love her father and sister too, but for very different reasons!

TheWickedBitchOfTheBest Thu 22-Aug-13 18:18:55

Persuasion really moves me, because without going into detail I was in a sort of similar position to Anne except I was 31 not 27. I'd gambled and lost and thought I was just going to fade away. DH rescued me and made all my dreams come true smile

Mumzy Thu 22-Aug-13 18:34:40

I think all JAs heroines are alter egos. In an age when women of her class were mostly decorative , I suspect she would have liked to have being as vivacious as Lizzy, outspoken as Emma, pious as Fanny, emotional as Marianne. In her real life she was probably was in a similar position to Anne Elliot when her engagement to Tom Lefroy came to an end but JA didn't have Anne's happy ending

The only adaptation worth watching was BBC1s Pride and Predjudice. I have just read "Death comes to Pemberley"! I've read worse, but it isn't in the same league as the original book. I also read another sequel ages ago, but have no idea who it was by or what it was called grin, obviously worth re-reading! I think Bingley had a love child and Elizabeth turned into a neurotic, jealous wife who thought that Darcy was cheating on her, when in fact he was just covering for Bingley!!
My DH also thought, for some unknown reason, that I would like to read the zombie version! Has anyone else tried it? I think I got as far "it os a universally accepted that any rich man must be in search of more brains" and gave up! grin

Love the zombie one. HATE the BBC P&P.

hackmum Thu 22-Aug-13 18:48:09

Mumzy - I've often wondered too whether Persuasion is her attempt to write a happy ending to her own sad story. I love that book. I also have fond memories of the adaptation that had Amanda Root playing Anne Elliott - so many of these adaptations are absolutely dreadful.

NuggetofPurestGreen Thu 22-Aug-13 18:56:11

I was at the same lectures as Shrugged and WickedBitch too I think grin. Agree the "Alan Rickman effect" was intentional, supposed to make Brandon into more traditional romantic hero.

As far as I can recall, my lecturer posited that Marianne's sickness is actually pregnancy and miscarriage which makes her even more closely aligned to Brandon's old girlfriend and, as previous posters have said, marrying him is her punishment for her execssive sensibility which had terrible consequences. Or something like that anyway.

NuggetofPurestGreen Thu 22-Aug-13 18:57:44

(Meant to say they utilised to Alan Rickman effect similarly in Harry Potter making us all love Snape)

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 18:58:21


yes read that book too. wasn't Denny a cross dresser and Elizabeth was infertile for a while. think it was just called 'pemberley' but not sure who wrote it. not very good.

Urgh at Marianne's illness being pregnancy - can't stand 'modern' readings of JA which are mostly designed to make the lecturer/writer sound cutting edge - does anybody remember that appalling Mansfield Park film with hints of Mary Crawford having the 'hots' for Fanny? Or the whole 'Jane and Cassandra were lovers' crap?

Pemberley is by Emma Tennant and the worse book I have ever had the misfortune to read.

Reader, I burned it.

Mumzy Thu 22-Aug-13 19:07:04

Hackmum great minds think alike grin. I too thought Amanda Root made a great Anne and gave a very nuanced performance.
Now isn't Emma Thompson ( Elinor) married to Greg Wise (Willoughby) in real life and come to think of it I reckon Marianne would also have followed Kate Winslet's footsteps and had a few more DHs after Brandon [bitch emoticon]

NuggetofPurestGreen Thu 22-Aug-13 19:07:15

ha Remus was just thinking about that Mansfield Park - the one where they made out Fanny was Jane Austen?? Awful stuff.

I don't mind a modern reading as long as it all makes sense and there's textual evidence - don't think I ever bought that one though.

thebody Thu 22-Aug-13 19:07:58

Remus thanks it was bloody awful agree.

still prefer Charlotte Lucas to any of the heroines though.

Must admit that Charlotte Lucas makes a brilliant zombie.

Oh I tried to read pemberley too as a teenager. Terrible.
I found this horror a couple of years ago in a cheap bookshop and bought it. It was hillarible. I was sorely disappointed by a lack of vampire lust fuelled darcy Elizabeth shagging though, missed a trick there.

totally agree with everything Thursdaylast says about Persuasion. I feel like Austen's writing improves as she goes and it saddens me greatly that Persuasion is the last of her novels. I would love to have read more of her mature writing. sigh.

I have a guilty fondness for two 'sequel' novels called Elizabeth & Darcy and Days and Nights at Pemberly. They're terrible but with lots of sex and I adore them mainly because of the hilarious consequences of being written by a poorly educated American whose main association with Austen was throb the Beeb's 1990s adaptation of P&P. The absolute highlight for me is when Elizabeth and Darcy are skinny dipping in a Lake at Pemberly and observe a turtle wallowing in the shallows <snort>

fun bodice rippers though.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Thu 22-Aug-13 19:56:02

Me Darcy's Diary wasn't a bad sequel. Death comes to Penberley was absolutely diabolical!
In general, I think the biggest bit of miscasting has got to be Keira Knightley as Elizabeth Bennett.

RenterNomad Thu 22-Aug-13 20:10:13

Pemberley was soooo crap and silly: I think Lizzy ended up having suppressed lesbian yearnings, which, when fulfilled, "sorted her out" and returned her to Darcy. hmm

P&P&Zombies was CRAP - only any good as a series of sketches (Lady Catherine de Ninja - wtf?!), but mutually exclusive. How can Lizzy & the other girls be renowned zombie killers AND be struggling to find husbands? Pshaw!

Death Comes to Pemberley was pants.

Mr Darcy's Daughters was quite good, all constraint and frustration, quote sensitive to the period.

I think I am the only Janeite on MN who loves both the zombies and the KK film. smile

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 20:24:17

I'm quite fond of the KK film, just not KK's presence in it. It was beautifully shot.

mummytime Thu 22-Aug-13 20:26:40

The best fiction book in the world of Jane Austen I have read is this one which treats her death a bit like a murder mystery.

RenterNomad Thu 22-Aug-13 20:27:16

Interesting regression analysis, RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie....

Sorry, Nomad but I don't understand that.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 20:45:28

I'm so grin that Persuasion is getting so much appreciation, I feel quite protective of it (so daft, I'm fully aware) and feel like P&P and S&S get all the glory, despite not being anything like as truly romantic.

I will look into this Amanda Root type adaptation, sounds positive.

I've only read Death Comes To Pemberly...I thought it started quite well but I seem to recall physically scoffing near the end. I can't even remember the plot now.

I remembered one thing I liked about the RPJ version and that was the portrayal of Elizabeth Elliot by ???? She was hilarious.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 20:54:24
NuggetofPurestGreen Thu 22-Aug-13 21:02:49

Now I want to go and read Persuasion again immediately. And then Emma, P&P, NA, S&S and MP. And the juvenilia. [dreams of being rich and being able to stay home reading all day]

marzipananimal Thu 22-Aug-13 21:14:35

Persuasion is my favourite too! Although I love all her books. Has anyone else read 'Sanditon'? Started by JA but completed by 'another lady'. I don't think it's in print any more but my parents have a copy and I love it too

bigbuttons Thu 22-Aug-13 21:19:11

Ciaran Hinds and Amanda Root's persuasion is glorious, I can watch it over and over. I think Persuasion is my favourite.

RenterNomad Thu 22-Aug-13 21:35:41

Sorry, Remus, the wiki explanation sounds crazy and is impenetrable if you stat cold, but I meant the sort of analysis where you take each factor and work out every single other factor that goes with it, and for how many other players. It helps you work out which characteristics "statistically" go together: Keira Knightley and zombies!

A bit of a tangent, but I've just found a great series with plenty of zombies which, are, moreover, not at all gratuitous (like the P&P&Z ones): they're a deliberate tactic by a retreating Mongol Horde, to ruin Europe, a bit like the Romans sowing salt at Carthage! Iron Seas steampunk

joanofarchitrave Thu 22-Aug-13 21:45:26

The most appealing of Jane Austen's men for me are Henry Tilney, Frank Churchill and Henry Crawford. Mr Bingley was sweetened very well by Crispin Thing in the 90s adaptation but in the book he is clearly Niceish but mainly Rich but Dim. I like that Austen again and again writes very unappealing main characters, with most of the attraction centred in a rogues' gallery of wronguns. I mean, Catherine Morland - thick as two short ones, easily led, 17 years old? What a catch. Metrosexual Henry is fab, whereas I still would like to be led astray by the moral black hole that is Frank Churchill.

I like Sanditon to some extent and also Jane Fairfax,both quite old continuations, but both are really quite dull - Austen's greatness is her dialogue and her author's voice IMO. The most recent (TV) version of Sense and Sensibility was utterly diabolical as the screenwriter decided to make it short enough for a film by removing all the dialogue. FGS.

RenterNomad Thu 22-Aug-13 22:19:29

Oooh, yes, I like Henry Tilney (NOT Crawford); I don't think he's that dim, either! That teasing about chatting inanely as though they were in a novel is clever, and he gains a moral dimension at the end, when his silly flirting turns serious, and he stands by Catherine. Ahhhh!

I don't get Frank Churchill at all!

HumphreyCobbler Thu 22-Aug-13 22:28:44

One of the characters in a Margaret Drabble novel (I think it is The Waterfall) says that she feels sorry for Emma having to sleep with Mr Knightly and that she would have done better to catch Frank Churchill if she could.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 22:33:35

NO to Frank Churchill, he's so slithery. Ew.

Mr Elton would have been into S&M.

Does no one else fancy Tom Bertram?

HumphreyCobbler Thu 22-Aug-13 22:41:33

Can't say Tom Bertram did it for me. But, although MP is my favourite, I don't think any of the blokes are that fanciable.

Shrugged Thu 22-Aug-13 22:41:54

Squoosh, you should read that rather good Mansfield Park sequel I mentioned up the thread. It features Tom Bertram quite centrally and sympathetically, and has him fall in love with someone who had designs on him in MP.

But no, never fancied him. Henry Crawford is the only half way fanciable man in MP, and he's a bit of an arrogant slimeball. But better than Dull But Worthy Edmund (dear God, did he crack a smile once in the entire timespan of the novel? Imagine his sermons), or the appalling Mr Rushworth or Mr Yates.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 22:46:34

Thanks shrugged, I think I'll give MP another read, it has been years, and then give the sequel a try.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 22:46:50

Thanks for the link squoosh...just ordered it, I'm excited to see it now!

I really can't think of any other male I'd fancy, although they all seem plausible while I'm reading. I think in real life Darcy would have been just enough of a wanker to put me off completely.

They're all into secret engagements, or being old and father figurey. Or just cads. I agree with previous poster saying Bingley is basically rich and nice but dim. I'd probs end up with him...

RenterNomad Thu 22-Aug-13 22:48:36

Oh, I think Fanny's brother William is going to be a cracker... if he stays off the booze that did for their father's fanciability, that is.

ThursdayLast Thu 22-Aug-13 22:52:17

I also like the KK P&P, don't even mind KK as Lizzie. I find them both annoying but likeable so works for me!

And Matthew whatshisface makes a good Darcy too. Is Lizzie popular today because she seems more like what it is to be a woman now? Does anyone know how she was received at the time?

I have sometimes freaked myself out a bit trying to imagine a world where P&P was never written. Or Romeo and Juliet. Two stories everyone knows even if they don't know they know...

Thanks, Nomad.

No to Tom Bertram but I do hope to have a dog named after him one day.

Henry Tilney isn't stupid, by any means. He's got quite a clever wit. I liked this guy a lot as him.

God no to Bingley...He has a library of books and doesn't even know what's in there. He probably ordered them by the yard. At least Darcy is well-read and has worked hard to build up the library that his family had already started. And he writes a darn good letter.

squoosh Thu 22-Aug-13 23:06:30

As I said way upthread sharing a bottle of port fireside with the intellectually unencumbered Mr Bingley wouldn't be too unpleasant a task. He'd keep you entertained.

Colonel Brandon would be looking at you mournfully and talking solemnly of his dead love.

MsMarple Thu 22-Aug-13 23:08:50

I'm not sure what I thought about Colonel Brandon when I read the book as, after seeing David Morrissey wander about the countryside looking manly, all rational thought went out of the window! Marianne was lucky to get him.

RenterNomad Thu 22-Aug-13 23:10:34

He is an e-pistol indeed! And didn't he duel with Wickham as well (epistles at dawn!), or am I mixing him up with someone else?

Colonel Brandon v Willoughby would have been an interesting duel, too! Please someone say they fought?

MsMarple Thu 22-Aug-13 23:26:01

Brandon did fight with Willoughby - because he got Brandon's young ward pregnant. The book doesn't show this, but Brandon tells Elinor about it briefly when he is telling her what Willoughby is really like.

Happily the film versions did manage to show us some pistols in the mist :0)

GrandstandingBlueTit Thu 22-Aug-13 23:58:09

I don't see Wickham as necessarily fabulously good looking.

Lizzie didn't fancy him because he was good looking, per se. She was swept away by her fantastic first impression of his superficially charming personality. Just as she was turned off by her terrible first impression of Darcy. That's the entire point of the story.

Lizzie is bright, yes. But the entire premise of the book is built around forming very quick impressions of two very different men and being wrong on both counts.

All it took for Wickham to appeal to her was to be personalable, charming, not unattractive, and, crucially, to - seemingly - 'see through' Mr Darcy. They were united in their disdain for him.

GibberTheMonkey Fri 23-Aug-13 00:28:53

I want them to make another lost in Austen (different book) Ok it makes me a heathen but it was fun.
I would have run off with Wickham under those circumstances.

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 00:48:36

I LOVED Lost in Austen!

kickassangel Fri 23-Aug-13 00:54:23

Just marking my place.

But I don't get the Alan Rickman love, far too brooding and pervy.

Tom Bertram, oh yes.

12345Floris Fri 23-Aug-13 00:59:37

You had me at 'all kinds of dark s* in the bedroom' &#128527;

Colonel Brandon has a dark side? Unlikely, but I like the suggestion very much.

12345Floris Fri 23-Aug-13 01:02:53

Yes, Willoughby and Emma Thompson are/were married in real life.

Mumzy Fri 23-Aug-13 07:23:57

Watched this a while ago becoming Jane which traces Janes doomed love affair and the influence it had on her writing.

Pachacuti Fri 23-Aug-13 08:59:48

The best bit about the zombie P&P is the tongue-in-cheek book club discussion suggestions at the end.

ppeatfruit Fri 23-Aug-13 09:27:49

You know what I've never quite understood in P&P is did Wickham COUNT on Darcy wanting to save the reputation of the Bennets when he eloped with Lydia? I must read the book again. Beacause the repeat of it with Jennifer Ehle seems to imply this.

judytheobscure Fri 23-Aug-13 09:36:21

ppeatfruit- Wickham ran away because he had gambling debts and took Lydia with him as something to pass the time. He never had any intention of marrying her and still hoped to make a marriage of fortune elsewhere. As Lydia was poor, had no brothers or 'connections', it was a safe bet no-one would come after them. But obviously when Mr Darcy found out, he had other ideas.

judytheobscure Fri 23-Aug-13 09:40:24

As for Marianne Dashwood, she didn't deserve Colonel Brandon. She's one of those tedious women, a bit like Jane Bennett, who can't catch a cold without nearly dying from it, Awful, awful character.

hackmum Fri 23-Aug-13 09:44:29

I don't know if anyone else saw it, but there was a great production of P&P this year at the Regent's Park Open Air theatre. They had a wonderful girl playing Lydia - the actress was only 17 in real life, and looked very young, so it did give you an added sense of what an exploitative creep Wickham really was.

biryani Fri 23-Aug-13 09:46:31

Never thought about it really. I think it more likely that Wickham, being a bit of a cad, did not want to marry Lydia anyway and was probably a bit put out that Darcy turned up just in time to save the Bennets' reputation. Lydia is not a catch, so I can't see why Wickham, who has been able to depend on Darcy's generosity in the past, should want to settle with a girl with very little. And he did pursue Darcy's (rich) sister for a while.

AnyoneforTurps Fri 23-Aug-13 10:05:30

The under-rated Henry Tilney is the nicest Austen hero and the only one I would actually want to marry. Much as I love P&P, Darcy would be far too high maintenance.

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 10:09:10

I think I've only read Northanger Abbey once, I need to read it again soon for sure.

Shrugged Fri 23-Aug-13 10:28:44

Henry Tilney's intense interest in dresses and fabrics would be a distinct turn-off for me, I must say. Plus any adult man who is prepared to go off and spend two entire days preparing to host his (admittedly tyrannical and fussy) father to dinner at his vicarage needs to get a grip!

Mumzy Fri 23-Aug-13 10:41:49

At the end of P&P JA implies that once married Wickham regularly sent Lydia to Darcy to ask for handouts to fund their extravagant lifestyle

Trills Fri 23-Aug-13 10:47:43

There's a lovely blog post here that talks about the Bechdel test and the "Jane Austen exemption".

When Jane and Elizabeth and Charlotte talk about Mr. Bingley and Mr. Darcy, they talk about £5,000 and £10,000 a year respectively. These are conversations about economics and sociology much more than they are conversations about men. They are conversations about whether you will be able to survive after your parents die and whether the man whom you will be utterly dependent on for said survival will treat you halfway decently.

AnyoneforTurps Fri 23-Aug-13 10:53:11

Henry Tilney's intense interest in dresses and fabrics would be a distinct turn-off for me, I must say

Better to be a beard that Mrs Wickham wink

biryani Fri 23-Aug-13 10:57:47

I often wonder if Ja was a bit of a man-hater, as she seems to make fun of so many of them. Perhaps her own spinsterhood left a mark?

MoreGin Fri 23-Aug-13 11:45:51

Lovely witty Mr Tilney is my favourite as well.

I thought Gwyneth Paltrow made a good Emma because I dislike the character and I dislike Gwyneth!

Viviennemary Fri 23-Aug-13 11:59:34

But if Willoughby had been ditched by his rich fiancee before the wedding I wonder if she would have married him after all. No. I think she is better off with Brandon.

ppeatfruit Fri 23-Aug-13 12:41:16

Thanks judy So in a way Darcy is more of a hero because he 'forced' Wickham to marry the stupid garrulous Lydia and I bet Wickham regretted it for ever!!

biryani She takes the piss out of women as well though e.g. Mrs. Bennett and Lady Catherine de Burgh and her poor daughter (who i feel sorry for actually sad). There ARE more silly men though she was a realist IMO !!

VenusRising Fri 23-Aug-13 12:47:31

It seems that none of them had any money of their own, and when they married, their husband got it.

I don't think it would have been n Charlotte's best interest to put arsenic in mr Collins' tea" more tea vicar?" as the house that they lived in was tied to his job.
She had no security at all, maybe a bit more by having a baby?

I think JA gave a good snapshot of life without any independence for both men and women: they were all nearly buried under obligations.
The only ones that seems to have any fun are the men about town, or those who can buy a commission in the army, or church. And even then, that had to "take a wife", as it was expected.

We can only bless the suffragettes! Hip hip hurrah!

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 13:01:18

Oh I've thought of someone else I'd marry from JA's back catalogue, Robert Martin from Emma. He was prosperous if not overly wealthy, could afford to keep a cook and a maid so you wouldn't need to slave away too much. Definitely not posh so you would be allowed go to raucous barn dances and then drunkenly scoff some game pie together in the wee hours.

And he was very nice.

ppeatfruit Fri 23-Aug-13 13:09:52

IKWYM Venus it was just a pipe dream grin.

True about independence; if you were a younger son you had very little hope as well (apart from the death of all your older brothers!)

ppeatfruit Fri 23-Aug-13 13:12:29

Yes I agree squoosh perhaps a bit too nice to put up with Harriet's snobbish treatment especially as it was a copy of Emma's unpleasant treatment of him.

TheNaughtySausage Fri 23-Aug-13 14:01:14

I've just got to the furniture-molesting scene grin

TheNaughtySausage Fri 23-Aug-13 14:13:41

And is it my imagination or can i see massive skyscrapers through the Windows in the scene where Fanny Dashwood goes mental at Lucy Steel?

Talking of Robert Martin (another man, unlike Bingley, who actually reads), I really, really like Travis in Clueless. So sweet and innocent and smiley. smile

sheridand Fri 23-Aug-13 15:23:49

I found my favourite Anne Eliot quote: "Men have had every advantage of us in telling their own story. Education has been theirs in so much higher a degree; the pen has been in their hands. I will not allow books to prove anything."

She's so bright.

And thinking on, I actually find that, although he is a repulsive sycophant in every way, I really enjoy reading Mr Collins. He is such a brilliant portrayal of a certain type of man, you can see him in such clarity. And for an actor; what a role! I didn't like the Keira P&P film, but Tom Hollanders Mr Collins is an excellent one, he is (almost) sympathetic in parts, and very funny. But this one, David Bamber, I can't watch without going "Nooooo! Elizabeth! Stab him!"

Seaweedy Fri 23-Aug-13 15:31:04

Yes to younger sons, though they still had considerably more economic freedom than all but the richest women. Just think, if nice Colonel Fitzwilliam hadn't been a younger son, it's perfectly possible he would have paid serious attention to Lizzie, who likes him. Plus Darcy's arrogant proposal would have made Colonel F extra attractive.

Though of course he meets Lizzie out of her family context, without her vulgar mother and hoydenish sisters. Presumably he or his aristocratic family would have investigated her background before a proposal was made - would he/his family have been as put off as Darcy?

I finished the Joan Aiken book. I don't recommend it.

Yes to Tom H as Mr Collins. Too often, Mr C is cast as far older than he should be.

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 15:46:52

David Bamber's Mr Collins is so wonderfully oily and unctious. You can just imagine him licking his lips as he removed one's bloomers on the wedding night. Yech.

Tom Hollander was much more sympathetic.

Seaweedy Fri 23-Aug-13 15:48:19

I adore Harriet Walter as Fanny Dashwood in the Ang Lee/ Emma Thompson S and S. Plus I think she played the appalling Mrs Elton brilliantly in one of the Emma adaptations.

To the poster who thought Austen's spinsterhood had soured her on men, she creates almost as many female monsters as male! Look at attention -grabbing Mrs Elton, Miss Bates with her verbal diarrhoea, man-mad Isabella Thorpe, Lady Catherine de Burgh, Mrs Bennett and Mrs Philips, Mary Bennett, almost catatonic Lady Bertram and her awful sister, Fanny's aunt, Mrs Shepherd and Mary the hypochondriac in Persuasion etc etc.

GKLN54 Fri 23-Aug-13 16:07:07

Emma Thompson/Elinor + Hugh Grant were just SO wrong for each other in those parts. She looked about the right age but yes springytoofs, he DID look about 12. By the way, how did Mr Sarky Hugh Lawrie end up with the Jennings idiot daughter (money I s'pose?). Lizzie Bennett only married Darcy for his looks, to get a bigger house than her sister and to stick two fingers up at the Bingley sisters. Colonel Fitzwilliam is waiting for moi and Mr Collins should have married Mary; Kitty could have had a nice local farmers son. Lady Catherine was totally fab though - what a woman, strong, expressive, articulate and I mean, how many women could carry off that lace hat thing so well....

sheridand Fri 23-Aug-13 16:07:15

Not to mention Lady Susan, who is HIDEOUS! Just vile, and a sadist to boot. Well worth a read if you can get it from your library!

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 17:36:36

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ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 17:39:40

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SpaceOpera Fri 23-Aug-13 17:41:34

Thanks to Hackmum for her recommendation of longbourn. Just finished the story of p&p from the servants' pov. Stunning use of language, the words didn't get between the story and the reader at all. Available on kindle ebook, ever so much better than death comes to pemberly, which was poor value for money.

GrendelsMum Fri 23-Aug-13 17:42:56

Henry Tilney is the only Austen man I would marry. Nice, witty, sense of humour, likes doing up his house and gardening. I think he only knows about the dresses because Eleanor does the equivalent of taking him to carry her bags round Selfridges. Not so sure about all his pet dogs, though. (Is it two he's got, or three?)

hackmum Fri 23-Aug-13 17:45:34

Glad you enjoyed it, SpaceOpera! That was quick work, so you must have enjoyed it.

hackmum Fri 23-Aug-13 17:45:54

Sorry, that was written in haste and obviously badly phrased with two enjoyeds - well, you know what I meant, anyway.

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 17:46:05

Dan Stevens? DAN STEVENS?

Good grief. I still play his death scene in Downton Abbey when I need cheering up.

SpaceOpera Fri 23-Aug-13 17:50:33

Agree with you trills. P&P can be read entirely as a novel about money and career (marriage being the only career open to the female gentry). Mr B is highly irresponsible in this respect, no wonder Mrs B worries so much about marrying off the girls. Equivalent to stressing about state vs private ed, jobs and houses for one's children today. Of course she was her own worst enemy in that she went about husband hunting far too blatantly. She did have a point though - no marriage = no job = no money.

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 17:53:35

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SpaceOpera Fri 23-Aug-13 17:54:29

Yeah Hackmum, all your fault for the book distracting me at work today grin. But seriously, where has Jo Baker been all my life? I've also been reading eavesdropping on Jane austen's England by the Adkins couple, I've always wanted to know what daily life for ordinary people was like in JA's time, and this book hits the spot. Jo baker gets all her period detail absolutely right. A real find.

GrendelsMum Fri 23-Aug-13 18:00:57

I also recommend 'What matters in Jane Austen', for an in-depth discussion of some of the social nuances in the novels.

GrendelsMum - that is currently in my Amazon basket. I read the first chapter in a book shop and it was excellent.

Jane's Fame is quite a decent read too.

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 18:09:51

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RenterNomad Fri 23-Aug-13 18:34:42

David Bamber did a creep of a Cicero in the BBC's Rome, too. I couldn't believe he had the balls to commit suicide - any Mr Collins haters can find solace there!

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 18:53:10

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AphraBehn Fri 23-Aug-13 18:54:39

Can I just mention this to all you Janeites?
Jane Austen's ring fundraising

AphraBehn Fri 23-Aug-13 18:55:57

I've always thought that a modern day Mr Collins would be the type to have a mail order bride.

thebody Fri 23-Aug-13 19:02:30

mrs Bennett would have made Mary marry Mr Collins.

she wouldn't have missed that trick.

thebody Fri 23-Aug-13 19:05:59

oh up thread re Charlotte Jennings and Hugh Laurie, in the book Charlotte was very pretty, love Imelda Staunton though.

thebody Fri 23-Aug-13 19:06:23

oh up thread re Charlotte Jennings and Hugh Laurie, in the book Charlotte was very pretty, love Imelda Staunton though.

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 19:11:14


Excellent use of feathery stroker.

sheridand Fri 23-Aug-13 19:28:16

I know he's meant to be posh totty and all that, but I think Benedict Cumberbatch would make an excellent Mr Collins.

And I'm quite partial to Aidan Turner as Darcy.

Wonder what Lady Catherine would make of Mr Collin's mail order bride. Aphra - That's an inspired idea!

GibberTheMonkey Fri 23-Aug-13 19:51:11

I get the Bamber Collins and Guy Henry from lost in Austen confused. They're both so horribly creepy. Henry with his finger sniffing ugh

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 19:53:07

The finger sniffing is hilarious!

girliefriend Fri 23-Aug-13 19:59:23

Hello ladies was reading this thread last night and love that there is so much appreciation for Persuasion - it's also my favourite.

Have felt in need of some Austen all day and in desperation have put Pride and Prejudice the film on - the one with the very very annoying Keira Knightly in grin at least Darcy is quite fit in it wink

I really need to reread all the books though.

BOF Fri 23-Aug-13 20:06:02

Grendelsmum, THANK YOU for that recommendation- I'm reading it now, and it's wonderful.

sheridand Fri 23-Aug-13 20:06:48

I've got the house to myself this Sunday night, husband off working and kids at a sleepover. I plan to be sat in front of the PC streaming the 1995 TV series with a big bottle of plonk and some snacks. The following morning, before everyone comes back, i'm going to go Persuasion crazy and watch the Ciaran Hinds tv series. ( Mental note to buy chocolate and Febreze to quickly spray round after a 10 minute tidy to make it look as if i've worked hard. Dog might get Febrezed too).

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 20:14:31

Sheridand, my DP is going out in a mo!
I'm really sad I don't have my Hinds/Root Persuasion yet, but I do have both the BBC and the KK P&P. Neither is quite as good, but I think it'll stem the cravings this thread has stirred!

Hmmm, I think I'm gonna go BBC

BarbarianMum Fri 23-Aug-13 20:32:10

<<my favourite is Charlotte Lucas who I think somehow murders Mr Collins and lives to a grand old age happy and content in not having to ever again please a man.>>

Oh, that would be such a relief. But what would she live on? I guess if she had a son he could inherit in his father's place.

Bufster Fri 23-Aug-13 20:44:01

I can't believe there has only been one mention of The Lizzie Bennet diaries on this thread. Seriously, it is great. If you like P&P go check it out on YouTube. It is a modern day adaptation of P&P with a real focus on the novel's female characters.

sheridand Fri 23-Aug-13 20:57:01

Thursday Last, it's all on Youtube! Along with myriad 1970's and 80's adaptations, which, although they are dressed in period costume, still manage to rock a 70's and 80's look. I love them!

thebody Fri 23-Aug-13 21:25:49

Barbarian, glad you agree that end for char Lucas. bestest character.

love love the mumsnetters planning Austen, wine, snacks, brilliant thread.

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 21:29:10

I've recently rewatched BBC P&P, I was worried it would be a bit clunky but t'wasn't! It was great.

Tomorrow I'm going to dig out the Ciaran Hinds Persuasion and watch it with a nice glass or two of wine.

sarahtigh Fri 23-Aug-13 21:30:04

all of the sequels and prequels are diabolical and some are even worse same goes for similar attempts for Jane Eyre etc

please please do not try to write endings for other people novels they spoil it really badly

thebody Fri 23-Aug-13 21:39:03

^* Sarah agree

SpaceOpera Fri 23-Aug-13 21:39:28

Thank you grendelsmum, now I've for it on kindle!

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 21:49:33

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ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 21:50:52

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squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 21:53:11

Schmaltzing I haven't actually watched the S&S that features Dan Stevens and David Morrisey, I must give it a whirl.

Trills Fri 23-Aug-13 21:53:56

This is a rather interesting book with a bit of Jane Eyre in it - it's neither a sequel nor a prequel though.

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 21:54:40

The Wide Sargasso Sea is a great book.

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 22:00:37

I liked that BBC S&S. the girl who played Marianne was pretty good I think, my fave line was delivered just how I like it...

"Good God Willoughby, what is the meaning of this?"

I'm on 2nd ep of BBC P&P, Lydia really is an annoying little twerp isn't she??

Collins is currently proposing to's so cringey I'm distracting myself writing this blush

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Fri 23-Aug-13 22:01:50


SaggyOldClothCatPuss Fri 23-Aug-13 22:05:00

Trills I bloody adore Jasper Fforde! He is so clever!
IIRC isn't the Jurisfiction HQ based in Mansfield Park? grin

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 22:05:19

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ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 22:05:50

Norland Park... S&S. Marianne asks for marmite grin

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 22:07:15

Don't know if you can tell I'm a ffan smile

AphraBehn Fri 23-Aug-13 22:07:22

schmaltzingmatilda I saw Toby Stephen in a play last week. He was quite sexy in that as well although shorter than you might think

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 22:10:33

Actors are awlays short arses, it's very disappointing. I loved Toby Stephens in The Camomile Lawn. He's got a very pleasing sneering, superior look.

Trills Fri 23-Aug-13 22:11:10


AphraBehn Fri 23-Aug-13 22:13:09

Matthew Macfadyen was big though. Huge hands and feet.

AphraBehn Fri 23-Aug-13 22:16:36

Keeping to the Austen theme, Anna Chancellor (P&P's Miss Bingley) was in the same play, she was gorgeous and funny, as was Anthony Calf (Colonel Fitzwilliam) who was also very funny.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Fri 23-Aug-13 22:22:18

And batteries IIRC! grin

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Fri 23-Aug-13 22:23:56

I need to go and read them all again now! I was JurisfictionOperative in an earlier NN incarnation!

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 22:29:30

Someone out there has Thursday Next. I was so disappointed sad

Actually, Marianne in TEA is my fave version of her! I don't think this is in the book, but I kind of imagine her sneaking off for a fag!

Poor Jane Bennett is bing snubbed by those ghastly Bingley sisters now. Anna Chancellor is fab full stop isn't she?

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 22:30:34

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ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 22:34:37

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ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 22:54:23

Who up thread mentioned Colonel Fitzwilliam?
I've just realised what a thoroughly good egg he is.
How had I forgotten him?

AphraBehn Fri 23-Aug-13 22:56:01

It was Private Lives. Matthew Macfadyen wasn't in this one, he was in another production I saw of the same play.

But Toby Stephens, Anna Chancellor, Anthony Calf and Anna Louise Plowman were a great cast.

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 22:58:25

I love Colonel Fitzwilliam, I think in Regency times the most prudent thing would be to go for a placidly pleasant man. A Darcy would be too much of a risk, what with his moods.

ThursdayLast Fri 23-Aug-13 23:00:10

Still true now!
I prefer my drama onscreen!

squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 23:02:38

Very wise Thursday although at least these days if you decide the domestic drama isn't for you can bail on them and try and more sedate model!

ProphetOfDoom Fri 23-Aug-13 23:27:35

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squoosh Fri 23-Aug-13 23:32:58

For a second I thought you meant Joan Plowright is married to Toby Stephens! But she's about 90.

AnyoneButLulu Sat 24-Aug-13 00:10:13

This is reminding me of my pet gripe, which is that adaptations of Emma always miscast Harriet Smith. The whole point of Harriet is that she is illegitimate and hence unmarriagable, but incredibly pretty in an obvious sort of way, (I imagine her as looking like a teenaged Holly Willoughby) and that's why Emma naively fools herself that she can achieve a good match for her. All the adaptations I've seen cast her as much less good looking than Emma, which makes Emma look just plain deluded.

ppeatfruit Sat 24-Aug-13 08:07:31

Yes I was thinking the same AnyoneButLulu. Another oily character played well is Mr Elton by (I've forgotten the actor's name in the Gyn. P. version).

SomewhereBeyondTheSea Sat 24-Aug-13 10:59:06

Heart this thread :-)

LadyCuppa Sat 24-Aug-13 11:07:39

Would like to see a really good film of 'Emma' - Emma Thompson could be 'poor Miss Taylor that was'

- and some really intelligent actress as Emma - like Michelle Dokherty - can't spell it - Gwyneth P acted like she'd never heard of Jane Austen -

Who would be a perfect 'Emma'?

AnyoneButLulu Sat 24-Aug-13 11:35:10

I rather liked Gwennie actually - she had the right "queen of all I survey" attitude - it was just Toni Colette I thought was disastrous, and the weird religious scene they shoehorned in.

hackmum Sat 24-Aug-13 11:40:25

SpaceOpera: "But seriously, where has Jo Baker been all my life? I've also been reading eavesdropping on Jane austen's England by the Adkins couple, I've always wanted to know what daily life for ordinary people was like in JA's time, and this book hits the spot. Jo baker gets all her period detail absolutely right. A real find."

It's amazing, I had never heard of her, so assumed Longbourn was her first book, but it seems to be her fourth. Will have to look up the Adkins book.

As you were, everyone...

ppeatfruit Sat 24-Aug-13 11:47:44

I totally agree Ladycuppa about poor Gwynnie although beautiful and queenly she just wasn't right for the part ;her American accent was quite well hidden until she said "thot" instead of thought i could've smacked her (and I don't do that sort of thing grin).

Also as you say anyone Toni Collete was just also sadly miscast ( IMO she's a class actress though which Gwyn isn't )

sheridand Sat 24-Aug-13 11:50:30

I'd love to travel in time and get a young Judi Dench to be Emma, or a snappy young Miranda Richardson, both of whom would be excellent older Austan characters now, at the drop of a hat. I think Kelly Macdonald would make a fair crack at it, maybe Ellie Kendrick or even that girl who was the Dr Who sidekick, can't think of her name.

I'd like to see Olivia Williams play Anne.

I just recalled Emma Thompsons' acceptance speech, worth a peek.

ppeatfruit Sat 24-Aug-13 11:55:35

I didn't like Romola Garai as Emma either (i'm very fussy) i can't think who'd be a perfect Emma.IMO directors and or 'names' very often go for looks and not talent sadly.

What about the actresses in Call The Midwife? There were a couple of good ones who might be okay as Emma.

edam Sat 24-Aug-13 13:06:40

I was very fed up about doing Mansfield Park for A-level - the most depressing Austen novel. Fanny ruddy prim Price, urgh. Austen apparently said Fanny was a heroine only her creator could love and IMO she was right. Fair enough, Fanny did stand up for herself and refuse to be browbeaten into a 'good match' but she was so irritating, I don't blame her relatives for wanting to slap her, even if they were all horrible themselves.

PD James's book was a travesty. WTF was she thinking? Austen is THE wittiest novelist and PD wouldn't recognise a joke if it trod on her foot in a clown costume shouting 'knock knock'. And everyone in PD James' novels is a miserable lonely fecker. I don't think PD likes people very much.

When I was younger I loved P&P and Northanger Abbey, now I'm <cough> a l lot older I adore Persuasion - so moving.

BOF Sat 24-Aug-13 13:18:33

Yes, Persuasion has always been my favourite, I think. And I loved the Ciaran Hinds adaptation (apart from the public snog at the end, which I just can't buy).

I LOVED the Ruth Wilson/Toby Stephens adaptation of Jane Erye. He was brilliant as Mr R and the chemistry between the two was brilliant. I'm going to rewatch tonight I think

Eyre I've caved and bought the DVD, rather than relying BT Broadband. I've also bought the recent S&S TV series

A few Marian Keyes fans on here, I see. smile

I'm so glad people are talking about the Ruth Wilson/Toby Stephens version of Jane Eyre, too. I love Ruth and her "intriguing upper lip" (as it was called by one commentator, the wonderful AA Gill I think). Appalling photo finish, though- naff, naff, naff!

Back to Austen. This thread has made me order "Persuasion" again. I haven't read it since I was unimpressed by it as a teenager. Now that I am an old hag, it might please me more, it seems. Thanks!

Yes to Toby S as Rochester - perfect.

I didn't like Northanger Abbey at all, but I do love all the rest of Jane Austin's main 6 novels, I'm sure there's another one that I haven't read though.

sheridand Sat 24-Aug-13 16:02:03

There's the juvenalia and the unfinished "Sandition".

Ben Chaplin as Rochester. Or Aidan Turner. Sufficiently dark and interesting.

And Rupert Graves as Wentworth. Yes please!

AphraBehn Sat 24-Aug-13 16:13:13

How about Rupert Graves as Colonel Brandon or Mr Knightley? Although I do have a soft spot for Johnny Lee Miller as Mr K.

Most actors that play Austen's men are too old. Darcy is only 28, Bingley a bit younger. Henry Tilney is around 24.

I thought they got it right with JLM. He was homely enough. Jeremy Northam was too dashing.

GrendelsMum Sat 24-Aug-13 17:06:13

Pleased that people have enjoyed the book rec!

I think that we get Mansfield Park wrong, and that we get Fanny Price wrong as a result.

I think you have to see the novel as the coming of age of a young woman who's grown up in an emotionally (and occasionally physically) abusive, neglectful foster home. Ever since she arrives at MP aged 10, she's told by everyone but Edmund (who's away at school most of the time) that she is worthless, something for rich people to take on for a whim - which is exactly what Henry Crawford decides to do. The novel is about her gradually telling the world that as a young woman with no money and no means of earning money, she is still not worthless, and that she has a right to choose her life for herself.

thebody Sat 24-Aug-13 17:14:05

I like that GrenelsMum and hadn't thought of Fanny like that. I will now read it again with a fresh approach.

I think Fanny defiantly has more bottle than Catherine Morland though who is very sweet and good but undeniably dim.

GigiDarcy Sat 24-Aug-13 17:20:13

So glad someone else likes the Lizzie Bennet Diaries! They have just won an Emmy! Anyone read the P and P variations by Abigail Reynolds or Lory Lilian? I hate sequels because I like to think of the characters as happily ever after but these are variations and 'what ifs' which I rather love. They do have sex scenes in though if that puts you off.

GrendelsMum Sat 24-Aug-13 17:23:36

Oh, poor Catherine Morland. She is very sweet and as you say, undeniably dim. Longer term, I fear for their marriage.

The weird / intriguing thing is that Mary Crawford has had very similar life experiences as Fanny Price - also sent off to live with an uncle and aunt, also what seems to be a really pretty dodgy home environment (I think the uncle's an abusive alcoholic, isn't he?) - but she's worked out an alternative way of coping by being very attractive and charming.

ppeatfruit Sat 24-Aug-13 17:24:46

It was Alan Cumming who played the lecherous,snob Mr Elton .I do love that he chooses an absolutely vile woman for her money serve him right !!! (Juliet Stevenson was fab as Mrs Elton IMO).

LadyCuppa Sat 24-Aug-13 20:42:07

I got so fed up with that drippy Fanny - and especially for not taking Henry Crawford - what a loser to turn him down! Plus it was a fluke she got Edward in the end and he thought she was a drip too - that's why he went for her, on the rebound from the far more intelligent and un-drippy Mary Crawford.

Sorry Grendels - good perspective - but the world would have been told something else entirely if Fanny had ended up living her Aunt Norland for ever and ever...which she would have 'in real life' after Mary Crawford got Edward and turfed her out and Henry Crawford turned up with a suspicious looking valet...

AnyoneButLulu Sat 24-Aug-13 20:57:02

<<laughs childishly at "drippy Fanny">>

<<gets coat>>

My problem with Northanger Abbey is that Catherine embarrasses herself so horrifically with the whole "Are you quite sure your father didn't murder/imprison your mother?" incident that if it were me I'd have to emigrate/become a nun/change my name. The one thing I certainly couldn't do is ever see Henry ever again.

squoosh Sat 24-Aug-13 21:00:27

I giggled at drippy Fanny too blush

LadyCuppa Sat 24-Aug-13 21:09:27

Oh - missed that completely...

ThursdayLast Sat 24-Aug-13 21:14:55

Drippy Fanny


AndHarry Sat 24-Aug-13 21:50:45

Persuasion is definitely my favourite JA. Captain Wentworth, yum.

SoThisIsHowYouNameChange Sat 24-Aug-13 23:17:52

Anybody seen this cartoon? I LOL'd:

SoThisIsHowYouNameChange Sat 24-Aug-13 23:30:55
nkf Sat 24-Aug-13 23:32:46

Emma is young. Early twenties. And not too bright. Vain and undereducated.

nkf Sat 24-Aug-13 23:34:00

What's interesting is that you all fancy the cads. I wonder if that was always the case and Austen understood the appeal of bad boys. Or a shift in sensibility over time.

nkf Sat 24-Aug-13 23:34:16

Apart from Wentworth that is.

SoThisIsHowYouNameChange Sun 25-Aug-13 00:02:54

Well, there's more opportunity for an interesting story if the characters are flawed.

edam Sun 25-Aug-13 00:06:53

grendelsmum, thanks for making me think again about Fanny Price.

surprised so many people are keen in Toby Stephens' Rochester, I thought he was awful. Like a gurning fool trying to do stiff upper lip yet failing horribly. And I normally have a thing for TS.grin

squoosh Sun 25-Aug-13 00:25:14

I don't fancy any Rochesters.

Thankfully no one has mentioned fancying a certain Heathcliff, that baffles me.

I should be offended at 'drippy Fanny' but I'm just sniggering. grin

Yours sincerely,
Fanny Price(less) wink

AndHarry Sun 25-Aug-13 11:10:05

To answer the original question, Marianne was a selfish, rude little madam who was extremely lucky to get Colonel Brandon. He would have treated her like a queen.

Aren't all 17 year olds selfish, rude little madams at times though?

God no to Heathcliffe. I hate Wuthering Heights.

GrendelsMum Sun 25-Aug-13 11:17:18

LadyCuppa - well, maybe that's actually the point? Maybe, in real life, and forgetting the fairy-tale ending in which it all works out right (or the alternative ending Austen points us to, in which she marries Henry Crawford and he and Maria have an ongoing affair), a poor woman like Fanny Price is actually pretty much worthless to the world, and her only option is to live with her Aunt Norris (or Aunt Bertram, perhaps).

Pug is the only pet in Jane Austen, isn't she? Is Pug a deliberate parallel to Fanny Price? Fanny is a pet for Lady B, just as Pug is. When Fanny gets a marriage proposal, she is elevated to the status of potential pug owner ('when Pug next has a litter, I shall give you one of the puppies').

I have to say I'd love to have a pug, so I could pretend to be Lady Bertram.

GibberTheMonkey Sun 25-Aug-13 11:37:04


I don't think I fancy the cads. I tend to like the men where I think the balance is actually the other way as to how good they are for each other. The only exception being Wentworth as she is.
Henry Tilney, she's wet. Knightly, she's a brat...

LadyCuppa Sun 25-Aug-13 12:54:12

Oh - clever analogy with the pug!
So the point is her morality is of more value, in the end, to her than a fortune like Julia's although it does not feed her literally - she is prioritising the morality over food and getting the ultimate gains and rewards of this?

ProphetOfDoom Sun 25-Aug-13 13:20:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

emma is younger than twenty though, isn't she? I thought she was about 18. and incredibly spoilt.

NuggetofPurestGreen Sun 25-Aug-13 13:53:32

I think she's 20 or 21 Cakes.

GrendelsMum Sun 25-Aug-13 13:58:01

LadyCuppa - yes, and she gets to see what morality and 'making your own choice' and marrying the man you love gets you when she's packed off back to Portsmouth and sees her mother and family living in unpleasant conditions. Lady B who married for money has done better and has a happier life than Mrs Price who married for love.

I sometimes think that the joke is that Fanny Price has listened to all the moral sermons that are meted out by Dr Grant etc and genuinely believes them, whereas everyone else knows that morality is rubbish and you need to look for the money. Then the Mansfield Park family are horrified to find out that she actually proposes to live by the rules they profess to follow.

GibberTheMonkey Sun 25-Aug-13 14:34:36

Pretty sure Emma is 20 at the start of the book.
Knightly is 15? years older yet they always manage to make him sound ancient

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Sun 25-Aug-13 15:02:50

Definitely think that Emma/Knightley is the creepiest match of all the Austen books. Emma is rich and indulged. Her money isn't going away when her Dad dies, like most of the heroines, because she's an only child with no entail issues.

So she marries an older bloke who admits he's been grooming her since she was 13?

Seriously? SERIOUSLY?

ThursdayLast Sun 25-Aug-13 16:01:46

No way do I fancy the cads. Even Darcy would be too high maintenance for me!

Wentworth, Wentworth, Wentworth, always, every time.

Don't get me started on Heathcliff, I'd like to refer you back to the Thursday Next series (can't recall which book) where the cast of Wuthering Heights are in group therapy.

Because of this thread I have given up on my reread of Hitchhikers, and have picked up Northanger Abbey.

I will always envy Clueless as my preferred version of Emma. Blame my teenage years.


It was v normal then for young women to marry older men, and at 35 Knightly is hardly an old man. Remember that Mr Woodhouse acted like a decrepit old fool, so Knightly would have seemed quite young and thrusting to Emma. smile

sheridand Sun 25-Aug-13 16:58:04

Well, i've just emerged from my 1995 Pride and Prejudice series marathon (no kids all day! And nothing else done!), and I had forgotten just how smashing it was. Colin Firth is brilliant. The look on his face when he's watching Lizzie at the piano smile, and Lizzie standing up to Catherine De Bourgh is brilliant. Now I need to find a good Persuasion to stream..... Glass of wine, no husband, no kids, full on Austen fest.

AphraBehn Sun 25-Aug-13 17:04:45

I'm going to watch the Amanda Root/Ciaron Hinds version of Persuasion later if I can find it on Youtube.

sheridand Sun 25-Aug-13 17:32:10

I've just looked for it, it's quite hard to find, all I can find are clips, grrr. She's an excellent Anne, and Mr Hinds is a wonderful Wentworth. You can find the 2007 version online though, might give that a shot.

ThursdayLast Sun 25-Aug-13 17:48:24

I ordered it online thanks to the recommendation of this thread, but I ALWAYS forget when it's a bloody bank holiday!

I'm reeeeaaaallllly looking forward to it

ProphetOfDoom Sun 25-Aug-13 17:48:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sheridand Sun 25-Aug-13 17:59:46

Yep, they've done a good job blocking it. I can find the Romola Garai Emma in it's entirety, that'll have to do! Although I think she's quite smackable in it.

ppeatfruit Sun 25-Aug-13 18:11:44

Tortoise Mr. Knightley is lovely though not a lech; he was not a snob he had a well run farm and respected the 'old' ways he was was careful to look after Emma's dad (even living in her house not his after their marriage).

ppeatfruit Sun 25-Aug-13 18:12:51

Give me Knightley any time!!!!grin

Emma has a sister though. married to Knightley's younger brother.
Keep it in the family

AphraBehn Sun 25-Aug-13 18:25:19


AphraBehn Sun 25-Aug-13 18:27:50

Sad face is for Persuasion being blocked on youtube.

Last year I was in Bath and was beyond excited at walking down the Gravel Walk. Had to keep reminding myself that Anne and Wentworth were not real people.

sheridand Sun 25-Aug-13 18:32:28

I'm settling for Johnny Lee Miller as Knightly instead. Some Spanish guy has uploaded all the episodes. I had forgotten how annoying Jane Fairfax is as well. And Churchill in this version is really piggy looking.

squoosh Sun 25-Aug-13 21:24:09

There is a drama on BBC1 right now starring 1995's Mr Collins and 2005's Charlotte Lucas! smile

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Mon 26-Aug-13 01:09:59

Oh, whoops, yes, forgot about the sister. My point still applies, though.

Knightley isn't lovely! Okay, maybe grooming is too harsh, but that whole speech about how he has wanted her since she was thirteen, and has spent the intervening years moulding her character and correcting her...? Nobody else finds that icky? Nobody?

ppeatfruit Mon 26-Aug-13 12:59:23

But he doesn't mean it in a nasty way JA mentions how Emma has been totally indulged by her father and governess\nanny and her actions show this. Only Knightley can see it and e.g. corrects her snobbishness\unkindness towards Miss Bates. She can see this and she LOVES him.

squoosh Mon 26-Aug-13 13:03:32

I always forget that Emma isn't an only child.

sheridand Mon 26-Aug-13 14:50:52

I don't think he's creepy. It was the norm for older men to marry younger women. I traced my family tree way back to about 1351, and in the Georgian period, I had one relative, a lady called Hamble ( like the playschool doll!) who had married at 16, and had a kid a year until she conked out, through sheer knackeredness I'd imagine at the age of 24. 7 kids, 4 lived. Then the husband married again, this time to a much older girl of 18! And had another 5 kids. And then she conked out. And he married again to a very elderly lady of 21! By this time he was about 43.

So not weird, to them, but weird to us, yes.

I've got 2 hours left till the kids come home, shall I go for Wuthering Heights or North and South?

ppeatfruit Mon 26-Aug-13 15:09:02

True squoosh me too; I wonder why JA needed the sister, apart from the having a reason to go to town, and for Emm to show how good she is with babies but both could've been done in a different way (not like Frank Churchill who goes to town 'FOR A HAIRCUT" OMG shock grin I love litttle touches like that that show how things have changed since 1815 or so!

Actually sheridand Nowadays it still goes on but the girls are even younger when they marry in parts of Asia shock.

ppeatfruit Mon 26-Aug-13 15:11:35

Oh sorry sheridan North and South every time!!!!

sheridand Mon 26-Aug-13 15:17:59

It does, I know, and it's HORRIBLE. Seen too many girls vanish from school once they go on "holiday".

I'm going for the Tenant of Wildfell Hall, i'd forgotten all about it but You Tube reminded me!

squoosh Mon 26-Aug-13 15:20:15

I've neither read nor watched The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I feel ashamed of myself.

sheridand Mon 26-Aug-13 15:22:48

It's brilliant! It's very much neglected and it's amazingly forward thinking. A woman leaves her abusive husband, and tries to forge a life for herself. In the TV series, Rupert Graves is the horrible husband and he is VILE! Toby Stephens is the saviour / hunk.

squoosh Mon 26-Aug-13 15:40:12

Oooooh I might just have popped the DVD in my Amazon shopping basket!

ppeatfruit Mon 26-Aug-13 15:56:13

Yes I agree about TTOWH. grin The book goes on a bit but it is good.

ppeatfruit Mon 26-Aug-13 15:57:44

The abusive husband is based on Branwell Bronte the druggy brother IIRC.

ThursdayLast Mon 26-Aug-13 16:05:50

I don't know a single thing about TTOWH...

blush Shamefaced.

I have an English degree blushblushblush

ppeatfruit Mon 26-Aug-13 16:17:02

You can get the DVD ThursdayLast I must admit I don't remember which Bronte sister wrote it . grin. Emily??

TTOWH is my favourite Bronte book. Can't abide 'Withering' Heights and Jane Eyre is only good in the second half and even then you have to put off with that appalling missionary chap. It's only good in the Rochester bits.

Knightley not at all creepy. He's the only one who shows Emma 'proper' non-spoiled behaviour. her dad doesn't because he's completely self-obsessed other than in his conviction that Emma is perfect and 'poor Miss Taylor' doesn't because she's a servant and is paid to be indulgent. Without Knightley, Emma wouldn't ever learn that her behaviour is sometimes pretty horrible. And doesn't he say that it's only when he thinks she loves Frank, that he realises he loves her? He's seen her as a younger sister figure, until he thinks he's losing her and that's when he realises that actually that love he feels for her isn't just brotherly.

ThursdayLast Mon 26-Aug-13 16:39:54

Aha, you see I didn't even know it was Bronte!

Never been a massive Bronte fan full stop. I was s'posed to read Villette for uni, I tried and tried and tried again and I couldn't get to the end. I don't enjoy Wuthering Heights either. I can't remember any more offhand now.

I've started re reading Northanger Abbey thanks to this thread. I forgot how out and out sarcastic it is in the beginning!

sheridand Mon 26-Aug-13 16:52:37

I did like Wuthering Heights when I was 16, but as a grown woman I find Heathcliff just utterly ridiculous. The tip off should be when he's hanging puppies over the chair! It's a little adolescent, I think.
TTOWH does ramble, but the heroine is brave and honest, and has a backbone. Cathy, OTOH, I could just slap into non-existance.
I have never ever managed to make it to the end of Vilette. I don't believe anyone has! Likewise any George Eliot at all apart from Silas Marner.
I do though, absolutely love Vanity Fair and Pendennis, and I wish to goodness there would be a decent adaptation of both of them.
I just thought who my best missed opportunity Lizzie would have been, the marvellous Charlotte Coleman, aka as Marmalade Atkins, who was lovely in that drippy Four Weddings and.... Sadly, she is passed on, but she'd have been brilliant.

AnyoneButLulu Mon 26-Aug-13 16:56:24

Agree that TTOWH is the best Bronte, Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre are all kinds of wrong, Vilette is just depressing, and Agnes Grey is blah. Not read Shirley, of The Professor.

Can't see Marmalade as Lizzy at all tbh, but agree that George E is torturous.

squoosh Mon 26-Aug-13 17:04:43

The only Eliot I've read is Adam Bede.

I was underwhelmed. Adam is boring, Dinah is boring.

sheridand Mon 26-Aug-13 17:07:41

I do quite like Shirley, but only because I'm a history teacher first and foremost, and it's a smashing account of Luddism and Industrialisation. Without it I don't think there would have been an North and South. It does drag on a bit though, with my "romance" hat on.

My other secret vice is a total Wilkie Collins obsession. There seriously needs to be a decent "Woman in White" film starring either Matthew Macfadyen or Ben Chaplin before I get too old to appreciate it.

I just thought of a possible missed Wentowrth: Nathaniel Parker.

squoosh Mon 26-Aug-13 17:10:07

The Woman in White is the most gripping book I've ever read! I adore Marian Halcombe.

GrendelsMum Mon 26-Aug-13 17:21:01

Oh, I adore Marian Halcombe too. Massive Wilkie Collins fan.

I very much like Adam Bede, too. I think Dinah's another one that you have to see in the context of the 19th century, not the 21st century, in order to understand how kick-ass she is.

Dinah and Marian Halcombe would make a brilliant detective partnership. <entirely random thought>

sheridand Mon 26-Aug-13 17:22:58

I love everything he's written, it's all good! Yet to find a decent adaptation of WIW on screen though, and I don't know why, it's so richly written. I didn't like the last BBC version that much.

If a decent director ever got round to doing The Moonstone,or WIW, oh my. Just imagine the queue of irascible gent actors for the detective. I think there is a 90's version with Greg Wise which I must catch up with.