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Series / Lost in Austen

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A four-part British miniseries for ITV. Amanda Price, an Austen fan from present-day Hammersmith, discovers a portal in her bathroom wall that leads into the world of Pride and Prejudice. After accidentally trapping herself into the novel's world, while at the same time locking Elizabeth Bennett in present day London, Hilarity Ensues as Amanda tries to serve as a stand-in to make sure that the story still progresses as it should.

This series provides examples of:

  • Adaptational Nice Guy: George Wickham becomes a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
  • Adaptational Sexuality: Miss Caroline Bingley who tried to catch Mr Darcy is lesbian. True, she did gush about Georgianna Darcy in the novel, but it was mostly done to show Mr Darcy how good a sister to her she would be.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Mr Collins. In the book he was pretty bad but here he's even worse.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Used In-Universe. The series loves to put different spins on the characters from the novel, to the complete shock and horror of Amanda.
    • Mr Collins as a sex-crazed, albeit very repressed and creepy pervert (whereas he is just boring in the book).
    • Caroline Bingley as a closet lesbian.
    • Mr Wickham is a good guy... or at least a Jerk with a Heart of Gold and a Loveable Rogue. Yes, you will actually like Wickham in this version.
    • Mrs Bennett is clever and scheming enough to look out for her daughters' welfare in a highly effective fashion.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Amanda often wished she could be a self-insert in Pride and Prejudice.
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  • Brick Joke: When Amanda mentions to Bingley that she's a lesbian, it plays as simply another awkward statement made by someone out of her depth. Two-thirds of the way through the film, it sets up a very funny sequence with Caroline.
  • Calvin Coolidge: His "you lose" anecdote is transferred in whole cloth to Darcy.
  • Changed My Jumper:
    • Amanda arrives in Regency-era England wearing tight pants and a low cut top (cleavage wasn't out of fashion but certainly not something that a lady would show off so early in the day). This raises a couple of eyebrows in the Bennett household, but she's able to explain it away as an outfit for otter hunting. This still doesn't excuse the fact that a woman is wearing breeches, but hey if the Bennetts don't care than why should we?
    • The reversal is shown later on in the movie when Amanda and Darcy show up wearing full Regency dress in 21st century London and no one cares. This is a little more believable, though, as performance artists, extras, costume-party-goers, and people who just feel like dressing that way are not an uncommon sight in a major city.
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  • Close-Enough Timeline: Poor Charlotte has still crossed the Despair Event Horizon.
  • Clumsy Copyright Censorship: The first DVD release of the series had to cut the part where Amanda sings "Downtown" for the Bingleys and Darcy because the rights hadn't been acquired. The joke that Bingley makes about "going downtown" immediately after made no sense without the song. Later releases reinstated the song.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Mostly Caroline Bingley.
  • Devoted to You: No real explanation is given for Darcy's love for Amanda.
  • Did I Just Say That Out Loud?: "Bumface".
    "It's, um, a card game."
  • Dinner and a Show: According to Caroline's snark about Amanda kicking Collins at their party.
  • Dirty Old Man: Mr Collins
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Mr. Bingley falls in love with Amanda, but she rebuffs him, thinking that he's meant to be with Jane. As a result, he goes into a downward spiral and finally elopes with Lydia, nearly killing Mr. Bennett in a duel.
  • Double In-Law Marriage: Mr Collins tries to marry his brothers off to the younger Bennetts. He fails.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Mr Bennett's first name is Claude, while Mr Collins' middle name is Zeal-of-the-Lord.
  • Exiled to the Couch: Mr Bennett exiles himself to the library for most of the series.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: A modern London girl stuck in fictional Regency England and making a pig's ear of keeping the plot together. On the other side, Elizabeth adjusts very well to life in the present-day Like a Duck Takes to Water.
  • For Want of a Nail: Amanda's presence fundamentally changes the story line despite all of her attempts to keep the novel on track: Jane marries Mr Collins, Mr Bingley runs away with Lydia, Mr Darcy falls in love with Amanda.
  • Genre Savvy: Amanda Price has practically memorized the novel she is stuck in and so she knows about all the characters and how everything should happen, even managing the correct manner of speech for the period... some of the time. However, this backfires as her insistence that everything should happen exactly as it does in the book simply creates more problems. Though this doesn't stop her from being absolutely shocked that Darcy is kind of a jerk at the beginning of the story.
  • Groin Attack: Amanda to Collins.
  • I Have This Friend...: Mr Collins unfortunately interprets Amanda's attempt to introduce Charlotte Lucas to him this way.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Wickham in this version. And Darcy of course, with he and Amanda having a fair amount of Belligerent Sexual Tension.
  • Large Ham: Alex Kingston (Mrs Bennett) is fully capable of subtle, nuanced acting. But Alex Kingston has no intention of doing any such thing in this series when she can chew scenery to her heart's content and still be completely true to the character.
  • No Equal-Opportunity Time Travel: Pointed out by Amanda's black roommate.
  • Of Course I'm Not a Virgin: Amanda accidentally lets this slip to Darcy while declaring her love. He is shocked and broken-hearted by this revelation, as social mores dictate that it would be impossible for him to marry a woman who is not a "maid". He gets over it.
  • One Head Taller: The actress playing Amanda is a full foot shorter than the actor playing Darcy.
  • Paranormal Romance
  • Politically Incorrect Hero: Darcy has a few moments, as one would expect from a wealthy man in Regency England. First he rescinds his offer of marriage after finding out his prospective wife is not a virgin , then in modern Hammersmith he loudly remarks on the "surfeit of negroes" on the crowded bus. Amanda tries to cover for him by claiming he has Tourette's.
  • Portal Book
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Darcy wouldn't be in-character without one.
  • Reckless Gun Usage: Collins waves a loaded hunting musket around at one point, having already accidentally hit a peacock.
  • Refugee from TV Land: Elizabeth Bennet ended up in modern day London instead of Amanda. She starts working as a baby-sitter, cuts her hair and enjoys herself, though the audience don't get to see her much.
  • Reset Button: Both used and averted. Lady Catherine annuls Jane's marriage to Mr Collins for "non-consummation" so that she can marry Mr Bingley as the novel dictates. Averted in a non-canonical ending when Elizabeth returned to present day London because she liked it there, so Amanda ended up marrying Mr Darcy.
  • Ridiculous Future Inflation: Inverted, along both axes. Everyone gets entirely the wrong idea when Amanda says she lives on 27,000 a year.
  • Sarcasm-Blind: Mrs. Bennett isn't smart enough to get Darcy's and Caroline's subtle snarks to her.
  • Shipper on Deck: She really wants Jane/Bingley romance to happen.
  • Shown Their Work: While some of the things that Amanda does probably wouldn't have gotten a pass in early 19th century England, it's still very clear that the writers did their best to make sure the Austen characters spoke and reacted to situations the way they should even after they go both literally and figuratively "off-book". There are some anachronisms, though — edible chocolate (as opposed to chocolate as a drink) didn't become common until the 1840s.
  • Shout-Out: Amanda at first assumes that she is trapped in a Regency version of The Truman Show. Later Amanda makes Mr Darcy reenact the iconic wet-shirt-at-the-lake scene from the 1995 BBC miniseries.
    Amanda: I'm having a bit of a strange post-modern moment here.
    • Amanda also quotes Emma while scolding Bingley for his treatment of Jane and public drunkenness. "Badly done," indeed.
  • Sorry, I'm Gay: Amanda to Mr. Bingley.
  • Speculative Fiction LGBT: Amanda and Caroline — how else would you get lesbians in Austen?
  • The Future Is Shocking: Darcy thinks present day Hammersmith is a hellish place, so he can tell Amanda You Are Worth Hell.
  • Trapped in TV Land: The premise. Amanda gets trapped in the book land of her favourite novel.
  • Tsundere: Amanda is a type B, Mrs Bennett is a type A.
  • Unusual Euphemism "Steering the punt from the Cambridge end" as a term for lesbian. Which also implies that Bingley went to Oxford.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Why, Amanda, you read the book how many times? And it surprises you to find out that Darcy is a stuck-up jerk at the beginning?
  • You Are Not Alone: After Amanda has made everyone think she's a lesbian (long story), Caroline discreetly lets her know that she is one as well, apparently purely for the sake of this trope.
  • Your Universe or Mine?: In the end, Amanda chooses Darcy's universe and Elizabeth Bennett chooses Amanda's.


Example of: