Me and Jane and the Zombies

My Jane Austen dolly

It has become evident that I’m not going to get any serious writing or editing done before the end of the year so I’ve decided to rift on the most boring thing about me: I’m obsessed with Jane Austen and will watch just about any production inspired by her work. Especially when I’m not feeling well. She can always squeeze a happy tear out of me.

In my defense, I’m not quite as looney as many so-called Janeites who dress in bonnets and empire waist dresses and have tea parties in the garden. 

But I did watch Pride and Prejudice and Zombies all the way through. Actually, other than the fact that the Bennett sisters are zombie killers, the plot is fairly close to the original.

That’s not always the case with P & P.  In the first film version (1940), the producers changed the time period to the late 1800s so that Greer Garson could dress and act more like Scarlett O’Hara and less like, well, Elizabeth Bennett. Then they compounded their tomfoolery by casting that obnoxious gasbag Sir Lawrence Olivier as Darcy. But it could have been worse. They originally tried to cast Clark Gable in the part. 

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the character of Fitzwilliam Darcy cannot be played by just any actor.  He or she has to be able to capture a character who is beyond stinky rich and prickly as a cactus but also kind and generous. Not to mention sensitive. But not too sensitive. In the 2003 version of P & P a little known Scottish actor plays opposite Kiera Knightley. She does a decent job as Elizabeth but he looks at times like he’s going to cry.  No, no, no.  Darcy is a Englishman gentleman and they do not cry!  Stiff upper lip and all that!

I also do not want to see Elizabeth and Darcy as a bickering married couple, as in the 2013 film Death Comes to Pemberley.  Even if Wickham is accused of murder and Darcy is forced to defend him for reasons that make no sense, Darcy and Elizabeth do not bicker.  They all out fight. Then they make up. Darcy gets wet, and, well, you know.

Speaking of wet Darcys, in the 1995 PBS miniseries, Colin Firth did the impossible. He pulled off Darcy. And for his efforts, look what they did to the poor guy.

They turned him into a swamp monster.

Happy New Years everyone!

33 thoughts on “Me and Jane and the Zombies

  1. This was really fun, Jan. You had me giggling and chuckling, and then at the end with the swamp monster, a good guffaw. Have a great new year, my friend–

    1. Thanks Jet! I imagine the artist thought the sculpture was a fine tribute but gads! I sincerely hope 2018 brings you much peace and joy! And that, of course, you get to return home.

  2. I think she has shown some promise though maybe she needs to get out of her comfort zone a little, with her writing. My brother, who does dress up at Janeite recreations and is the ultimate fan will now put out a contract on me. Happy New year Jan

    1. Oh boy – you are taking your life in your hands provoking a Janeite! Good story idea though – Pride and Prejudice and the Mob. Happy New Year to you and yours!

  3. Such a fine start of the year, a blog about Jane Austen and her characters. Love everything about her books. What a woman! Happy 2018, it is going to be a great year! xx

  4. I am having trouble posting and liking anything these days. WordPress is against me. I wonder if we could ever act like the characters in an Austin novel? What would be worse to be like them or us? “Like”…Thanks. Duke

    1. I wonder what’s up with WordPress. Women had so little freedom in Austen’s time that I wouldn’t want be in any of her books unless I could be a man. Mr. Bingley might be nice – a rich, happy, guileless man married to a sweet, loving lady with only a few wacky relatives.

  5. Ah, you’ve reminded me that I want to see the movie Austenland (and have just reserved it at the library). It got lousy reviews but the previews looked liked fun…

    1. I did my senior thesis in college on Jane Austen – but I try to keep an open mind. For example, I loved Bride and Prejudice – the Bollywood version of P & P. I think you would too as a swing dancer!

  6. My daughter and I watch P&P each year as one of our must watched “Christmas” movies, even though it’s not really, but who cares. Our favorite Darcy is Colin Firth too!! Hope you had a nice holiday! =)

  7. This made me laugh which was a relief! I tend to like the characters in Sense and Sensibility better than Pride and Prejudice. . . We liked Donald Sutherland as the father and Keira Knightley as Elizabeth, though in the one you are not liking. (My youngest daughter and I love a movie that is pretty near perfect called, “Love Actually.” We watch it over Christmas holidays. 💫

    1. For some reason I don’t always get notified when someone leaves a comment so apologies for this late reply. I did enjoy the Knightley version of P&P – I was just being silly!

      1. Aww, thank you, Jan! I really appreciate your letting me know since it was well done in my opinion. 😉 You are always entitled to disagree!

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