So, I happened to stumble across something completely new and WONDERFUL the other day. What is the cause of this delight? A YouTube adaptation of Pride and Prejudice called The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.
Now you may think that the world doesn’t need ANOTHER P&P adaptation. Poor Elizabeth Bennet has been through the ringer in reprises and sequels. I thought I had my fill after reading the original novel and watching the 2005 movie version, but was quickly proven wrong.
There is something special about this retelling. It starts with the characters. Elizabeth Bennet-Lizzie–is the perfect mix of wit and sarcasm. Charlotte is the consummate foil with her serious attitude. Older sister Jane is absolutely charming. Lydia is perfection; she takes all of the annoying characteristics of teenagers and makes them entertaining. The actors own their characters, creating believable people. I want to grab a drink with them and become their friend.
Instead of meeting the Bennet parents, you see them portrayed by Lizzie and Charlotte in costume. This often allows the writers to work in the original words of Jane Austen without them seeming out of place. Lizzie’s rendition of Darcy enables you to see her perception of him without her having to say it directly. Lydia’s impersonation of Bing Lee–Charles Bingley–is what I assume to be wildly inaccurate; but entertaining as hell.
The characters alone were enough to make me subscribe to these videos; the brilliant writing led me to become addicted. The writers adapt the Bennets’ problems of the early 19th century to contemporary issues. Finding wealthy suitors to support your five daughters–due to a lack of an inheritance– becomes finding rich guys to pay off your three daughters’ student loans. These stories translate seamlessly while being injected with humor.
I was hooked after watching the first video. I watched the three available episodes immediately. I then re-watched them another two or three more times. On Mondays and Thursday I eagerly watch Lizzie’s twitter feed for an announcement of a new vlog. Once a new one is posted I watch it two or three times before the withdrawal sets in.
Why am I so interested in a story when I know the ending? Because the writers have made such an interesting journey. They have taken something we know the answer to and created new questions. When will we see Darcy? What sort of craziness will Lydia get herself into? What journey will Charlotte take? I need to know now!!!
However, I am forced to wait for these answers. On days where there is no new videos updates I check the various Twitter feeds of the characters and their various Tumblr pages. I know I will be sad when it the series ends, but can’t wait to see how the it unravels. Have I convinced you to check the first episode? I have included it below. Looking to catch up on all of the LBD goodness? Check out this link here I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!