Will the Bond Girl Become Darcy’s Girl? Lost in Austen Spoiler

Recently I wrote that Amanda Price (Jemima Rooper) is likely to refuse Darcy’s (Elliot Cowan) proposal in the ITV mini series Lost in Austen. Was I wrong!

Gemma Arterton as Elizabeth Bennet

Gemma Arterton as Elizabeth Bennet

According to the producers’ press release Amanda falls as hard for Darcy as he does for her. She is overjoyed with his proposal, and her doubts about his belonging to one Elizabeth Bennet (Gemma Arterton – the Bond’s girl) are quickly quelled by the man himself, who says that he doesn’t care one bit for our Lizzy. Amanda accepts and her head is full of plans for their happy union when Caroline Bingley tells Darcy to enquire after Amanda’s past. When Darcy learns about her many flings, he breaks the engagement. He can’t marry a non-virgin. Darcy proposes to Caroline Bingley, and Amanda feels bereft.

In the meantime all of the havoc Amanda caused to other characters hits the roof, and Mr. Bennet is deadly wound in a duel with Bingley. Amanda finds her way back to the future and is desperate to find Elizabeth. Darcy, who can’t overcome his feelings for her, follows her and declares his undying love again. Amanda finds Lizzy, who is working as a nanny (the producers say that it means that she fared in the future very well! really!) and is enamoured with internet. While at Amanda’s flat Lizzy shows Darcy all of the P&P sites she had found, but it seems he’s still only after Amanda. When he fights with Amanda’s ex over her, Amanda takes him and Lizzy back to Regency.

And here we are. With Darcy engaged to Caroline, in love with Amanda, and not caring one bit for our Lizzy , while Amanda is as in love with him as ever, and afraid that he might now fall for Lizzy once he had met her. Are we supposed to feel sorry for Amanda? Hmm…

Anyway, I’ve been thinking about possible outcomes to this macabre. Here they are:

1.) Since Amanda and Darcy are in love with each other, and the synopsis shows it’s deep and serious on both sides, Darcy should only prove to her that he’s not going to fall in love with Lizzy just because Austen wrote so, break his engagement to Caro, and we have a happy ending for them.

2.) Lizzy might be infatuated with Darcy (after reading all of the P&P fanfic with a better Darcy than theirs, lol), and Amanda’s boyfriend became all romantic lately, so perhaps Darcy falls in love with Lizzy after all (although he doesn’t seem interested so far so it’s not very convincible) and poor Amanda, with a broken heart, returns to her ex.

3.) Amanda, feeling guilty about all of the mess she’d done, has a one night hot sex with Darcy and sneaks to modern London in the morning. Perhaps her boyfriend follows her to the Regency era to fetch her. Darcy marries Lizzy as a substitute.

4.) They end the episode in an unresolved manner, allowing everyone to imagine whatever they wish.

5.) Amanda wakes up on her sofa, with P&P at hand – it was all a dream!

I guess my problem with the series is that no matter how original the authors think they are, they really are not. There are thousands of fanfics with better premises and plots (some of them sci-fi too) that at least managed to remain true to Austen’s characters, what certainly cannot be said about this series. Moreover, the plot lacks intelligence. The ideas they use are among the most cliché ones in all of the fandom. There is nothing new and fresh about them, they were compromised many times.

I have no idea how they are going to fix the mess they wrought in their tale, but I know that I’m not interested in a Darcy who could fall for Amanda the Mary Sue, and so I don’t care. I just wish that a TV company that have a budget for a four episode long costume TV series might spend it in a better manner. Do they really think that watching Darcy fall for their Amanda is every girl’s dream? Come on!

I would certainly prefer to watch something clever and witty set in the era even if it didn’t have anything to do with Austen. Jane Austen’s fans aren’t as stupid as the producers imagine them to be, are they?

sm-plusPosted by Sylwia
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10 thoughts on “Will the Bond Girl Become Darcy’s Girl? Lost in Austen Spoiler

  1. You’re funny.

    It’s sweet to read this stuff. Pathetic in its misguided assumptions and haughty indignation before the series has been seen ( andbased entirely on a press release devised by the suits at ITV!) but sweet nonetheless.

    Bless you.

  2. There would be little sense in speculating after one has seen the series, don’t you think?

    Of course I don’t make any assumptions about things I haven’t seen. Nothing about the actors’ acting that I’m sure will be very convincing, or the costumes and scenery.

    I just read the summaries of the four episodes the way one reads fanfiction, because it will be a filmed piece of a fanfic after all. 😉

  3. Hi Silwia,

    As you, I am a huge fan of P&P, but I am enjoying Lost In Austen very much! When I heard that this series was coming, I was looking forward to the first episode.
    When I read P & P for the first time, I really was stunned about the “passive” women, so I think Amanda is refreshing in stirring it up like she does. Lost in Austen was never meant to equal P&P, just bringing it in another perspective. Maybe you should take it a little bit less serious.
    Well done, Guy Andrews !

  4. Thank you for your comment, Odette!

    I thought Lizzy had just the right amount of spirit to be charming and spunky, and yet not vulgar like her mother or Lydia were. Amanda would come off as crass even today, and in the Regency era she’s like a younger Mrs. Bennet to me, so I’m afraid I can’t watch it without cringing. What bugs me is that from my POV they do something awful out of something perfect. But it’s like with every book or show. Everyone has their own tastes and expectations. I can imagine that people can enjoy the show even if I can’t.

  5. Jemima Rooper is spunky is this role, but I still can’t relate to her or the implausibility of Mr. Darcy falling for her (he would have, without blinking, had her thrown out of the building long ago). By the second episode, I felt that the Miss Price role had been sorely mis-cast and someone like Emily Blunt would have made the character and situations far more believable.

  6. Hi Melodicity, I agree with you. Darcy would have thrown Amanda out without as much as a blink.

    Well, thankfully this show is over. It’s a real relief! And I have an answer to my question: option 1.) won the contest! Unfortunately I was right that the authors wouldn’t prove imaginative!

    I feel as if Darcy has just married Mrs. Bennet, and it seems more disgusting to me than Jane’s marriage to Mr. Collins. LiA put things in a new perspective, indeed!

  7. Perhaps Lost in Austen should not be interpreted as a new adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice but a commentary on how Andrew Davies’ 1995 adaptation has permeated our popular culture. (Tinky Winky sharing screen time with Mr Darcy!).

    Darcy has (almost) become a term to describe a highly eligible male. The character of Amanda Price therefore is an embodiment of the post 1995 female desire of the Mr Darcy declaring his love for her (or in this case his willingness to harrow hell to be with her). On this level Lost in Austen works.

    In defence of Amanda, any modern interloper would be considered crass as it is doubted that even the most ardent Austen fan would be able to successfully negotiate that society.

    Melodicity and Sylwia observe that Mr Darcy would ‘throw out Amanda’. Mr Darcy also would not love one and propose to another. So perhaps there is the consolation that the real Mr Darcy is still faithful to his dearest loveliest Elizabeth.

    In this vein Lost in Austen as a Pride & Prejudice adaptation fails as the core story has been corrupted. There is the sense that throughout time Lizzy and Darcy would always find and love each other.

    That said and for what it’s worth Lost in Austen was an enjoyable romp

  8. Yes, Maz. It’s not really the idea of an unfaithful adaptation that bothered me in this project, only that it failed on the whole. It wasn’t defined well enough for its own purposes.

    A commentary on the impact of 1995 P&P with a modern heroine dreaming of her own Darcy? That’s Bridget Jones. It was done, it’s already old.

    A parody? Well, it wasn’t clever enough for one.

    Would any modern woman come off as too crass? Sure! But Amanda could easily come off as such even in our modern society. In a way, if they took a well behaved modern woman, and made her travel there only to show that she’d come off as vulgar anyway that would be far more interesting. If they seriously showed how silly such dreams are, because in reality none of us would ever like to live then. But the moral of LiA is exactly the opposite. Amanda remains in her dream land with her dream boy.

    LiA wanted to be both a parody and a love story, and that’s too much. We’ll see how “Jane Austen Handheld” comes off. Hopefully better than that.

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