main index




Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
YMMV: Pride and Prejudice
  • Adaptation Displacement:
    • The 1995 miniseries to a certain degree, especially within the fandom itself. While everyone still knows it was a book first, the miniseries is so faithful that the instances of Fanon (e.g. the "shelves in the closet" joke) get frequently treated like canon.
    • A couple people heard about it (or became aware of its plot) through the game, although part of it might have been because Aglefumph, who Let's Play'd it twice, has a lot of followers.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: A fair few feminist critics of the book posit Elizabeth as being just as materialistic as any of the less sympathetic characters by focusing on her feelings for Darcy changing as she visits his magnificent estate. (Considering that, during this retelling, Jane immediately thereafter entreats her to please be serious, these critics may have missed the mark, or at least the humor.)
    • Some adaptations portray Mary in a much more sympathetic light, emphasizing her plainness and bookwormishness compared to her more attractive and outgoing sisters. Even amongst those who have only read the book, Mary has a sizable fanbase. The 2005 adaptation gives a few hints that she falls for Mr. Collins during his stay.
    • Depending on the writer/director, Mr Collins ranges from "awkward and stupid but sincere" (2005 movie) to "probably some kind of sexual predator" (Lost in Austen).
    • The 2005 adaptation in general softens the edge on most of the cast, giving Mr. and Mrs. Bennet a few Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other moments, lessening Mr. Collins' sliminess, and presenting Mr. Darcy as shy, rather than snobby.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Even those that groan at reading the book, nay even some haters, love Mr. Bennet and his snark.
  • Epileptic Trees: Although not really present in the original novel, some later adaptations tend to run with the idea that Mary was secretly in love with Mr. Collins. However, unfortunately for her he was Oblivious to Love and too occupied in punching over his weight in chasing after Elizabeth to notice. Considering the personalities of the respective characters, this isn't an implausible idea even in the text of the novel: it is said that Mary appreciates Mr. Collins more than the rest, and there is a brief moment, after Elizabeth's rejection, when it is thought that Mr. Collins would propose to Mary, who was not opposed to the possibility.
  • Fair for Its Day: Though Austen was hardly a socio-political radical, she showed a great deal of flexibility toward the idea of class, with several characters that subvert their societal roles. And while she suggested no alternative lifestyle choices, Charlotte's pragmatic choice and Lydia's bought-and-sold marriage rather bluntly illustrate the dependence and limitations placed on women of the time.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Darcy's and Elizabeth's debate about the dangers and merits of yielding to persuasion — emphasis Elizabeth's.
    • The 1995 mini-series with Jennifer Ehle (Lizzy) and Colin Firth (Darcy) became this after The King's Speech, where Ehle plays the wife of George VI's (Firth) therapist. They have one scene together, where Ehle's character's eyes bug out over seeing the royal couple in her home.
    • In the 2005 adaptation, Carey Mulligan plays ditzy younger sister Kitty and Rosamund Pike portrays intelligent, if overly-trusting, eldest sister Jane. However, in An Education, Mulligan is Oxford-bound Brainy Brunette Jenny, while Pike plays Dumb Blonde Helen.
    • Also in the 2005 adaptation, Jena Maloney plays Lydia and Donald Sutherland plays Mr. Bennet...Jena plays Johanna Mason in Catching Fire, and Sutherland plays President Snow.
  • Hollywood Homely:
    • In the 2005 version, the plain, bookish Mary is played by Talulah Riley... one of St Trinian's hottest Fille Fatales.
    • On the other hand, Charlotte averts this in the 2005 (Claudie Blakley) version; while she wouldn't crack any mirrors, her face isn't one anyone would reliably call pretty. Lucy Scott in the 1995 miniseries, however, is decidedly more attractive than her book counterpart.
  • Ho Yay: Darcy and Bingley. Even Elizabeth notices.
  • It Was His Sled: The BBC America trailer for the 1995 miniseries starts by showing the wedding and stating "We know how it ends..."
  • Mary Sue: Jane is seen as this sometimes; she's the most gorgeous girl in town, has the sweetest disposition and is incapable of finding bad in anyone. More so in the movie adaptations than the book, where she is seen as being a little too quick to trust people and/or too late to find fault with them. In both, her attitude of Love You and Everybody does mislead Darcy as to the strength of her affection for Bingley, and thus delay their engagement. Still, being too nice is basically her only fault, and it never gets her into any lasting trouble. Although one fundamental part of the trope is ignored; while Jane might be the perfect sister, she's only a background focus of the story and the action primarily concerns her more flawed but also more interesting sister Lizzie.
  • Memetic Mutation:
  • Misaimed Fandom:
  • Rewatch Bonus: Watching the 1995 miniseries repeatedly reveals a number of subtle and excellent touches from the actors, often in Facial Dialogue and Meaningful Looks.
  • Ron the Death Eater: As mentioned above, some modern-day critics seize on Elizabeth's comment that her feelings for Darcy changed after seeing his grand estate as evidence that she is selfish, materialistic and shallow — ignoring that, in context, she is clearly making a joke.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: Part of the reason it has such a bad reputation; many high schoolers are forced to read the most generic and archetypical romantic comedy of them all...except it's the Ur Example or at least the Trope Codifier.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • Despite Mr. Darcy instantly standing out as the richest and most handsome man at the ball when he first arrives in Hertfordshire, the ladies quickly lose interest because he's a haughty, brooding loner... which would only serve to augment, rather than diminish, his appeal today. Many a girl and many a woman swoons over Tall, Dark and Snarky men. Which explains why so many women today are in love with Darcy. That attitude started with Romanticism, which was in its early stages by the time Austen was writing. It wasn't mainstream yet, but even Austen has characters who express those feelings, such as Marianne from Sense and Sensibility (which is all about Romanticism Versus Enlightenment, represented by Marianne and Elinor respectively).
    • Charlotte's quick marriage to Mr. Collins. She can't stand him as a person, but her prospects are so poor (she's the ripe old age of 27 and only average if not plain in looks with little money) and his are so good that she accepts; these values seem rather off-putting to modern female readers. This is lampshaded by Austen through Lizzy, who is appalled that her best friend would stoop so low just to secure her own comfort. Charlotte was Austen's commentary on the plight of the average woman during the Regency, who would sadly often sell themselves to the highest bidder in an effort to avoid ending up on the streets or worse.
    • Everyone's reaction towards fifteen-year-old Lydia running off with late-twenties Wickham. Today, it would be more like "arrest that creeper!" But Lydia's family gets them quietly married so as not to arouse suspicion and gossip, which would have ruined the family. Darcy is ahead of the times by trying to get Lydia to leave Wickham when he first finds them, only arranging their marriage after she refuses to come to her senses and go home. (He also did manage to get his own sister away from Wickham.)
    • Part of the reason Mary has such a Misaimed Fandom is because of the range of things other characters get down on her for - everything from the truly obnoxious, like her moralizing lectures, to hogging the piano to...not being interested in balls. And this is used as grounds to say she's as bad as Lydia and Kitty. One has to consider, though, that balls were the primary way for young single people in the English countryside to meet and mingle (those in the city had other opportunities), and for girls like the Bennets who would be penniless upon their father's death if they didn't marry well, getting to know men at balls was crucial both for their own welfare and that of their family. So it was rather presumptuous of Mary not to at least make an effort to dance and socialize. Modern introverted readers who've been mocked for not being outgoing tend to see themselves in Mary, and forget how different their situations are.
    • While Mrs. Bennet was always intended to come off as silly, she comes off as significantly more so to modern readers than she did to readers in Austen's time, when marrying well was actually essential to securing a woman's future happiness. This is especially true with the Bennet sisters, who would lose everything upon their father's death (since the home is passing to Mr. Collins) if they have not yet married. To put it in perspective, a modern analogue would be the "helicopter parents" who obsess over their kids getting into a good university.
    • Mr. Bennet states that Lizzy is the kind of woman who would not be happy in marriage unless she "looked up to [her husband] as a superior", and Lizzy assures him that she does see Mr. Darcy that way. Although this one does depend on whether you think they mean that Darcy is socially or emotionally superior to Lizzie in standing or import (as in, Darcy is superior to Lizzie), or rather that they mean that he'd appear so when compared to the rest of the man around (as in, Darcy is superior to any other man Lizzie might be interested in).
  • Wangst: While her daughters do face ruin if they are unable to secure husbands, Mrs. Bennet's primary focus seems to be endless whining about how this will affect her.

TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from
Privacy Policy