I do not remember the first time that I read Pride and Prejudice. All I know is that I had read it a few times before high school, and all through my four years there I would constantly check out a copy from my school’s library. I was a Darcy girl, through and through. I felt that I was quite a bit like Elizabeth Bennet, in certain ways, a fact that was solidified when I encountered various adaptations. But recently? Things have changed.
I am a fan of the web series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, which, if you are not aware, is a modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice in the form of online video blogs. I became even more of a fan of Darcy while I watched that series (if that was possible).
Having enjoyed the Lizzie Bennet Diaries so much, I was pretty excited when the people who created it went on to do another adaptation of a Jane Austen novel. This adaptation, Emma Approved, is based on Jane Austen’s novel Emma and is approaching its end. But I have realized something that I did not really put together until I saw it in a modern context. Even then, I finally put it together within the past few weeks.
I like Knightley more than Darcy.
I could explain every reason why, and there are quite a few, but that would take ages. Besides, there is one major, glaring reason. I like the relationship that Emma and Knightley have more than the one between Elizabeth and Darcy. I can hear gasps now, but let me explain. Lizzie and Darcy never knew each other before, and while there is nothing wrong with going straight from that, this is why I like Emma and Knightley more.
Emma and Knightley are best friends, and have been for a very long time. He always brings her head back to the ground and makes her see reason when it is necessary. They both rely on each other, and it is clear even before they are together how much each one cares about the other. At the moment in Emma Approved, they have not gotten together. I will not give out spoilers (really, you need to watch this unfold—it is amazing) but the last few weeks and the episodes that have been released have really exhibited their relationship and I know that it is only going to be multiplied.
If I had to live out one of these stories, although Emma’s is harder (she is supposed to be unlikable at first, although I have never disliked her) I would want hers, hands down. A best friend was her foundation—if I had the choice, it would be mine as well.
For those of you who have read both, and have seen both The Lizzie Bennet Diaries and Emma Approved…did your opinions change? Which “camp” are you in?
Knightley—well, he can be my knight in shining armour.