Thursday, August 9, 2012

Reader Question #8: Examining Pride and Prejudice (1995)

This reader question came to me from blowback. blowback writes:

With respect (of the deepest kind) to Pride and Prejudice, what do you miss from the book that never made it onto the small screen (1995 BBC/A&E version of course) and which, if any, of the additional/re-created scenes did you enjoy/think worthwhile. Anything to do with a certain pond (with a significant smile, nodding head towards Lyme Park) is disallowed!

But the lake scene is such a classic! Okay, okay, I'll disallow it...

I watched the 1995 miniseries before reading the book, so while reading the book, I was impressed by how close the miniseries was to the book; there were whole sections of the book where I could picture the miniseries going on. But what I noticed while I was finishing up Pride and Prejudice was that the miniseries rushes the ending a little bit and leaves some things out. For instance, I remember there was a dinner at Longbourn to which Mr. Bingley and Mr. Darcy were in attendance and Elizabeth for a good part of the dinner thought (and I'm paraphrasing here) "Okay, he's here, but he probably won't ask me to marry him again". I would have liked to see that scene in the 1995 miniseries and that they didn't rush the ending. I also would have liked to see the "epilogue" in the miniseries (you know, how Jane and Mr. Bingley were settled at Netherfield for a couple of months, but moved once Mrs. Bennet got to be too much of a frequent visitor, and how Elizabeth and Georgiana became good friends, and Lydia and Wickham became indifferent to each other, etc.).

Mr. Darcy writing his letter to Elizabeth.
Now, for the additional/re-created scenes that I enjoyed or thought worthwhile. The scene definitely worthwhile was where Mr. Darcy writes the letter to Elizabeth. In Pride and Prejudice the book, we don't see the struggle that Mr. Darcy goes through writing that letter to Elizabeth -- let's face it, he's opening up some painful memories that he put away for a long time, so it was probably painful for him to write about it. So, I thought that the inclusion of that scene in the 1995 miniseries was a plus and it showed us another side to Mr. Darcy.

What do you think? What would you have liked to have seen in the 1995 miniseries of Pride and Prejudice? What additional/re-created scenes did you like the most? Leave a comment!

Thank you blowback for suggesting this question. If you have a question you would like to submit for me to do a post on, leave a comment. Just follow these guidelines. It can be about anything related to this blog: period dramas, blogging, reviews, etc.

 God Bless,
God Bless, Miss Elizabeth Bennet


  1. I LOVE your header!!!!!!!! Beautiful! :)

  2. p.s. and thanks for sharing my button on your lovely blog!

  3. Thanks for answering my questions.
    You're right - the ending was too quick - but I got the feeling that most viewers in the UK were wishing that Darcy would get a move on and get to the kiss by that stage.
    As to the "epilogue", it seemed to me that it might have taken an entire additional episode to cover it fully. However, thinking about it made me realize that it could mostly be done with a short scene of Christmas Day just over a year after the wedding with Kitty and the all the Gardiners staying with all the Darcys, the Darcys and Gardiners driving around the park before all the Bingleys plus Hurst's coming in the afternoon for dinner, Mr Bingley complaining on the way about the Wickhams staying too long, maybe a littl'un or two and the final words of Elizabeth spoken to Mr Darcy being taken from the adieu of Mr Darcy's letter to her. Pure corn! And of course, no Christmas decorations, a Victorian invention I believe.
    As for Mr Darcy's scene composing the letter to Elizabeth, I thought that worked very well. We know that it took about eleven hours. Just writing the letter would have taken no more than an hour even though we have been told that Mr Darcy is very careful in his letter writing, so how was the other ten hours spent? Examining his behaviour?
    I also liked the way the two parts of his letter were flipped with the Wickham part based on his reminiscences (covered in the flashbacks) being dealt with first, so that we could see Elizabeth's responses to the points he made about Bingley/Jane as she read the letter.
    As for the content of the letter, I have to say that I'm not that impressed, it was enough to be going on with but we have to wait till after the second proposal to find out how great the change has been when he mentions the problems with his upbringing. As for the adieu, that appears in the last line spoken by Mrs Bennet, I think.
    As for scenes that were omitted, I would liked to have had all the meetings between Mr Darcy and Elizabeth included, except perhaps their three meetings in the park at Rosings which were satisfactorily replaced with the single scene of Mr Darcy on horseback meeting Elizabeth in silence. I would also have liked to have more of the Netherfield ball including the second half with Mr Collins demonstrating what a jerk he really was. Additionally, it would have been good to have the full text of their conversations at these meetings. Another episode would have covered it all and would have been one step closer to perfection.


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