It Is A Truth Universally Acknowledged That We Could All Use A Little More Austen.


Or

So I like Jane Austen, so what?

Hello, you lovely readers, bloggers, and followers!

I am totally hyped up right now on Cherry Coke, iced oatmeal cookies, and Jane Austen. (And nail polish fumes.)

Instead of working on my homework, (I started a copywriting class), or my writing, (I did outline two new articles for that website and write a new scene for Novel Numero Dos today – that’s enough, right?), I discovered something amazing:

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, an online (modern) adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

I haven’t been this excited since The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet played out cheesily and awesomely on Twitter.

Lizzie and Lydia

Basically, Lizzie Bennet is a twenty-something undergrad on her way to a degree in mass media and an uncertain future. Her videos are edited by her best friend, the practical Charlotte Lu, and tend to fixate on three topics: her sister Jane’s new relationship with rich med student, Bing Lee; her insane mother, who once forced Lizzie to dress up as a spinster for Halloween; and this jerk she met recently named William Darcy.

Lydia and Lizzie’s impersonation of Bing and Darcy. (Apparently Darcy is a hipster?)

Her sisters Jane and Lydia frequently make guests appearances. Lizzie likes to reenact the events in her life, dragging Jane and Charlotte into her vlogs to play various roles. Lydia annoys her sister to no end and often steals the spotlight with her ridiculous attitude. The fact that she has started her own vlog greatly amuses me. Oh, and she has a cat named “Kitty” who you can follow on Twitter.

Lizzie and Charlotte reenact Mrs. and Mr. Bennet’s conversation about the new neighbor.

There’s also a cousin named Mary whom Lizzie never seems to remember; Ricky Collins, a childhood friend Lizzie once proposed to in elementary school; Caroline Lee, Bing’s sister, who managed to make me hate her before she ever appeared in a video (although I might have already been biased towards her); and a reportedly hot and charming swim coach named George Wickham.

The videos are supplemented with tweet conversations between the Lees and Darcy, as well as Lizzie, Lydia, and their followers; sneak peeks of Jane’s portfolio; and Q&A videos with Lizzie. The characters are on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and Tumblr.

I love it.

And I love it more because even though it talks a lot about relationships and marriage, it seems to grasp the fact that Austen was writing more than just romance novels for women to swoon over.

The swooning is fun; the wit is better.

Have a taste – here’s the very first vlog:

Official Website: http://www.lizziebennet.com/

Now go forth and watch.

GIFs were found at Tumblrs havelogicwilltravel and kathyax.
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10 thoughts on “It Is A Truth Universally Acknowledged That We Could All Use A Little More Austen.

  1. Pingback: Reasons as to why Lizzie Bennet is perpetually single « So…Nitemice

  2. “undergrad” she’s a grad student, aye?

    You are responsible for introducing me to these. Just what I needed, a new addiction! 😉
    I find them HIGHLY entertaining. There are a few things that bother me about the portrayal of Lizzie, but on the whole, I really like what they are doing with the material. My one big beef is that Lizzie is supposed to have pretty keen insights into people and how they operate, save for her three big blind spots (W, D, and Charlotte) and I’m not seeing that here. I am worried that she’s going to come off as “all wrong” rather than “sometimes wrong and sometimes right,” as she is in the book. Do you see that too, or is it just me?

    • She might be. Oops.

      Haha, I’m glad. Have you watched just Lizzie’s videos or have you seen the others’ as well? (Lydia and Charlotte have their own as well.) I agree about Lizzie. Honestly, the best Lizzie (IMHO) was Jennifer Ehle. She got it. Keira Knightley was too giggly, and this Lizzie is too mean.

      What did you think of George Wickham? I might have swooned, which I find disturbing. I’ve never liked Wickham, not even in the book, but this one. Wow.

      One more thing I love about this series is how geeky it is. In one of Lydia’s videos, she babysits a bunch of kids who all share names with the cast of The Lord of the Rings films. Charlotte’s sister also fangirled over Doctor Who and “Asylum of the Daleks” in one video. 😉

      • Yup. I’m not joking when I say addiction. I’ve even been amused by glancing over the twitter feeds. 😛 I love Maria Lu already.
        I agree on the Lizzie portrayals. Ehle nailed it. I could really understand both how she managed to break through Darcy’s prejudices and accidentally make him think she liked him. I enjoy the LBD Lizzie immensely, but she’s not quite in character. Then again, as all the other characters are slightly off too and the whole thing is present day, I am happy to sit back and see how it all plays out.

        Lol! If he makes us swoon, he’s doing his job right! Looks-wise, he’s not my type (personality-wise, I imagine, the character is neither of our types 😉 but I love the fact that he is good-looking and “smooth.” It always bothers me, in P&P productions, when Wickham is either plain, or substantially less-handsome than Darcy! From what I remember in the book, Wickham is supposed to be better-looking than Darcy. Ergo, I approve of the LBD Wickham very much.

        The Geek references are fantastic. You know, Lizzie would totally be a Geek if she lived now.

      • I just caught up with Lizzie’s videos. I’ll have to check Charlotte’s and make sure I’ve seen all of hers.

        Oh, Twitter! I know. I’ve started following a few. (And then all of them.) The one account that excites me the most is Gigi Darcy’s, although she hasn’t done much except post music.

        I enjoy LBD’s Lizzie, too, but she is really mean. I do like how Jane, Lydia, and Charlotte are all very clear to point out that we’re only hearing Lizzie’s side of the story, and that Lizzie apparently makes everything sound worse, especially when she’s ranting about Darcy. I don’t think that’s very canon, but I think for the series it works.

        Wickham. Oh, Wickham. I know what you mean–I always thought in the other adaptations that he wasn’t very physically attractive. However, I also felt that in the Ehle version, Lizzie didn’t really like like him that much. Or at least, she wasn’t so affected by him, um, romantically. It was more that she hated Darcy and he hated Darcy, and she finally had someone to fuel her anti-Darcy campaign. (It’s been so long since I read the book I can’t remember if she was interested in him.)

        Looks-wise–well, I find some men like that very attractive, but I’m usually too nervous or too convinced they’re going to be like a George Wickham to ever, uh, pursue them as an option. (They also made him a swimmer. I really love swimmers…) But yes, I get a little happy whenever he shows up. He’s written and played brilliantly.

        Okay, so I just watched the latest ep–the “Snickerdoodles” one–and oh my goodness, Jane! I wanted to cry. I felt so bad for her. And why on earth did Lizzie just let George stand her up like that? And LYDIA? In the “Communicating” ep? How are they going to play out Lydia’s story when she’s become the voice of reason on George Wickham? Okay, maybe not the voice of reason, but she’s definitely not the airhead she sometimes appears to be. (Skanky? Yes. Bimbo? No.)

  3. New Maria Lu vlog up! http://youtu.be/gQ1793Nq89E

    I am excited about Gigi. I really hope she is as great as they are setting her up to be.

    Lizzie’s exaggeration is not very canon, and it bugs me because it makes her misjudgements about W. and D. just business as usual. I want her blind spots to stand out and shed light on WHY she misjudges those two in particular. You know what I mean? Her journey of self-discovery is supposed to be about her own prejudices and areas of pride, not her being a bad judge of character. Her exaggerations do make her very entertaining to watch, though, so I can see why they went that route.

    Hmm, well in the book, she figures out that she is not in love with him long before she learns the truth about him. She likes him, thinks well of him, and finds him attractive, but stops there. Love, for Lizzie, seems to involve a lot more than simply thinking well of someone and finding him attractive. Just another example of her usually very good judgement. 😉

    Jane… *sniffs* the actor who plays her is fantastic! Wow!
    Lizzie is being pretty true to the book in her tolerance of Wickham. After all, she makes allowances for him when he pursues Mary King for her fortune.
    I am very intrigued by what they are doing with Lydia, and I rather like it. They are giving her more depth. I wonder how they are going to work the plot, though, now that they have proved that she has a brain. 🙂

    • I do know what you mean about Lizzie. I think too often P&P is seen as a simple love story, and it’s really not. It uses love to comment on JA’s world, and even ours today. Lizzie’s portrayal is okay, but I am worried viewers won’t get the full picture of Lizzie. At times the writers seem to realize that maybe they haven’t quite stayed true to the source material, and then there’s an awkward moment that feels forced. Thankfully there haven’t been that many, but still.

      I’m glad to hear that about Lizzie and Wickham. I forgot about Mary King. 🙂 Although when I read that (and saw the BBC version), I saw it as Lizzie maturely stepping away from Wickham so that she wouldn’t get caught up in his drama. I thought she made excuses for him so that they could remain friends. I’m worried that in this version, Lizzie is making excuses as if that will make George fall in love with her and stay with her forever. 😦

      I just love Lydia so much. 🙂

      • Soooo true. It’s a pet peeve of mine when people dismiss any Austen novel as a simple love-story, whether they like the love-story aspect or not. Jane A. had a keen eye and a sharp mind.

        Keeping the drama down was probably on her mind.

        Me too.

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