Dull Times Breed Disaster

So back in 2015 I started going through Emma to celebrate her 200th anniversary.

I paused her to go through Northanger Abbey and Persuasion for their anniversary years, but have decided to throw her back into the mix with the others.

Alright!

So as I was reading, I was thinking what a boring life Emma must have been living at the time “her story” starts.

So Emma and her sister were raised by a father who doted on them and the governess Miss Taylor. Miss Taylor was more a sister than an elder, so I imagine the girls must have had a lot of fun together.

Girls night!

But then Isabella married John Knightley and there was just the two girls.

And then Miss Taylor married…leaving Emma alone with a hypochondriac father.

And who did her father have for constant companions?

Besides her father, Miss and Mrs. Bates. Now Mrs. Bates is very old and Miss Bates is a kind, sweet woman but to Emma she is also dull, older, and not one Emma could have interesting conversation with.

And who else? Mrs. Goddard, the woman who owns and runs a boarding house. Also kind, caring, but much older than Emma and another she would find dreadfully dull.

Ugh!

Yes these were the ones that Emma spent most of her days with after the marriage of Miss Taylor to Mr. Weston.

Now what about Mr. Knightley, you may ask? Yes, it is true that he and Mr. Elton visited but…

“…Mrs. and Miss Bates, and Mrs. Goddard, three ladies [were] almost always at the service of an invitation from Hartfield, and who were fetched and carried home so often…” –Emma, pg 17

“These were the ladies that whom Emma found herself very frequently able to collect…She was delighted to see her father look comfortable…but the quiet prosings of three such women made her feel that every evening so spent was indeed one of the long evenings she had fearfully anticipated.” –Emma, pg 18-19

Ugh, I’m so bored!

No wonder she plunges herself heart and soul into breaking up Harriet and Robert and matching up Harriet and Mr. Elton. She bored out of her socks! Can you imagine spending every day for long periods of time with Miss Bates?

And then triple that with Mrs. Bates and Mrs. Goddard.

I think I’d be going mad for anything else to bring “excitement” into my life.

This made me think of when I was a child and mother brought me to all kinds of adult functions. She is a pastor and we had to go to everything, and I remember being bored out of my skull and wishing there was another kid there to do things with.

Good thing I had my books-

As I grew older I learned to take part in the conversation and grew less bored with being with people not in my years-but then again none of the people I have spent long periods of time with were as difficult to be with as Miss Bates.

Blah, blah

Poor Emma-especially as one who doesn’t really play, read, sing, paint, embroider, etc-she has no escape. NO escape that is, except meddling!

For more on Emma Woodhouse, go to Jane Austen Chinese Zodiac

For more on Mrs. and Miss Bates, go to Should We Pity Miss Bates or Strive to Be Her?

For more on Mrs. Goddard, go to A Visit to Highbury: Another View of Emma

For more Emma, go to Pride, Prejudice, and Personal Statements

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Pride, Prejudice, and Personal Statements

Pride, Prejudice, and Personal Statements by Mary Pagones

I was given this book free in exchange for an honest review. I had planned to post the review earlier, but I had to go out of town for my grandmother’s funeral, and then the rest of the week was packed.

But then I began to put it off as I have been having such a hard time reviewing this book.

But I’m actually glad I did. I don’t know if you have been following the college bribe scandal involving Lori Loughlin and Felicity Hoffman-but this book is right up that alley. Crazy parents who will do practically anything to have their kids go to a “good” college. Expensive college application tutors doing all they can to get the kids placed and increase their application. If interested, go to this link. For the review-keep reading.

First let me start that I want to give props to Mary Pagones. Writing is hard…

Writing a whole book is even harder, and then putting your work out there for people to praise or pull apart-

That’s hard. So for finishing your book, Mary Pagones-

So I have been having such a hard time reviewing this book. I thought it was interesting but I’m sorry, I know that this will probably make the author angry-but I didn’t see Pride and Prejudice at all, but Emma.

What?

Yep-

Yes, I…well let’d back up. I’ll go over that later, let’s do a quick plot synopsis first:

So this is the story of Lissa- Jane Austen megafan who is getting ready to apply to college. She faces all the difficulties of branding herself, having a personal statement, using the scholarship from one school to leverage getting more money out of the other, etc. Besides that, she has her senior year with her friends, and a new boyfriend, and trying to do what she can to ace her SATs, pad her application, and hopefully-get into the school of her dreams!

So the first thing that made this book hard for me was that this concept was so foreign to me. I was shocked and confused, is this really how it is like? My experience was soooo different. I graduated in 2010 and am the first in my family to ever go to a four year university, and one immediately out of high school. I had no clue how to do anything and had knew no one to ask about it. There were no “college applications tutors”. We didn’t even have a guidance counselor-just the former principal who had retired and volunteered. I had never even heard of a college application tutor until reading this book.

Uhhhhhhh

I am biracial and the running joke in my family is that the only college fund we have is that my mom is Mexican-and I could hopefully get scholarships. I’m from a low-income area, mostly agriculture, but I did go to college prep/art school. I applied in mass (thank you fee waivers) to four UCs and four CSUs. I was lucky to get into al but one, UCLA. There were no interviews-just my resume of extracurriculars (which I had a ton of), transcripts, letters of references, and a personal statement (that I cant even remember what I wrote but I did have a teacher review it for me). I received my letters and then judged them based on the amount I received in scholarship money-I didn’t even know that you could use one’s amount as leverage as stated in this book. Basically I ended up split between two schools that were giving me the most. The school I chose, my first year was paid for, I had to take loans out the next three years, and work two jobs to put myself through school.

I had a hard time reading this book and hearing Lissa whine about being poor when she and her sister have iPhones and each have a laptop. I had a CD player because I and my family couldn’t afford anything. We had one computer growing up-that was my dad ad I only got my laptop my first year of college through my scholarship funds, and because I had a family friend who worked with Apple. Unfortunately, the one I purchased was outmoded the next year. Only by the grace of God is it still running. My first cellphone was a flip phone I got for free from the company because they were outmoding them, and it cost $40 a month, the cheapest I could get.

Lissa and her family eat all kinds of hamburger, pizza, turkey meatballs, name brand cereal, etc-and she can afford to buy lunch everyday from the cafeteria. Poor is surviving on 1/4 cup of oatmeal, hot chocolate instead of milk, and having to choose between fruit and dairy (which I did in college until I got my two jobs). She says that she is poor, but snubs her nose at a school that has maid service-if she was really poor she’d be down on that. If I didn’t have to clean my four years-woohoo. Do you know how much cleaning supplies can add up to? Luckily, today the Dollar Tree carries a lot.

As poor as these ladies

The other part I had trouble connecting to is when Lissa describes being at the college and meeting all these goth/all black wearing, alternative, pieced people-in a Jane Austen literature class. Really? In a Jane Austen class? I’m not surprised there would be some-but what about all the other people who would be in such a class.

My junior year I took an upperclass history class: The History of the Novel. Half the kids were in there for history, half were English majors. There is a picture of us and I will describe how we look. First there is Kevin: Kevin was a super outdoorsy, park ranger, hiker type guy. Hiking boots, loved the outdoors, all-american blonde football-type, in a baseball cap, tee shirt, and jeans. Then there was Thomas, noir-loving, Sundance, type guy-like Jughead Jones in TV’s Riverdale stole his look with the long hair, jacket, etc. Angelica-long curly hair/afro, always wore big rings, and smart jackets-very professional. Gwynn wore her hair long, with side bangs over one eye-dark eyeshadow and liner, jeans, and thin hoodies. Belinda was in a sorority and always had perfectly straightened hair and wore a shirt/sweater with the sorority letters on it. Kate was full athlete-always workout gear and hair in braid or ponytail. And then me-I’m wearing a little jacket my mom made, lacy “Jane Austen” inspired shirt and cowboy boots. A large variety of personalities, clothes, and interests.

Wow!

So I have to say that this book wasn’t for me. I just couldn’t connect with the characters or the plot. I guess a lot has changed in nine years. Or it might have been the area I grew up in versus where this is set.

I guess I’m too old.

So lets move on to why do I think this is Emma?

So the story is of a widowed father who loved his wife dearly, and lost her suddenly. He has two daughters which he cherishes, has a close relationship too, and worries constantly about.

Then we have the main character, Lissa. Lissa is headstrong and stubborn-but at the same time she is also a tad manipulative, thinks she knows everything, and can be harsh and judgmental. True-Elizabeth does share some of these qualities but I feel Lissa is way more Emma.  Like Emma she thinks she knows everything and in the end discovers that she was much more naive than she thought.

She can be very controlling of her friends-pushing Calvin to “officially” out himself, instead of letting him do things how he wants. She is also constantly trying to match her friend Jacqui up-first with a guy they go to school with, Noel, but when she determines that he is not worthy-tries to get her to match up with a guy Jacqui met on a school tour.

She meets a guy, Hugh Fitzgerald, and because of how he dresses basically she believes that he is perfect-not really getting to know him and enjoying his sarcastic jabs at everyone and everything…

That is until his jabs are aimed at her and she realizes that he is not that great of  person after all-very much like how Emma realizes Franck Churchill is a major jerk. Hugh is so Frank Churchill, he uses Lissa to get him through English and write a screenplay for his movie which he takes full credit for-while at the same time boinking her sister; just as Frank used Emma to deflect he was involved with Jane.

Jacqui is so a Harriet in my opinion. Jacqui is Lissa’s best friend and is kind, sweet, and completely convinced into doing whatever Lissa thinks she should do. Lissa thinks she should get closer to Noel, Jacqui does. Lissa thinks that Jacqui should go with her to the Regency Fair, even though Jacqui isn’t into it-Jacqui not only does, but has a dress made, gloves, etc. Then Lissa pushes Jacqui to another guy, and she does go after him.

Lissa hates on a classmate Charlotte so much, but I don’t see any real reason to dislike her. Charlotte is wealthy, goes on lots of trips, talks about her grades and Princeton constantly-but she cares about people and never flaunts what she has in other people’s faces. She may gossip a lot but she’s not mean about it or cruel. Lissa just hates on her because she is jealous-and all her reactions reminds me of Emma and Jane Fairfax. Jane Fairfax is Emma’s number-one hated person but there is no real reason to dislike her. Emma just does because she is jealous off all she has and her talents.

I think Calvin was supposed to be Charlotte from Pride and Prejudice, but I see a Mrs. Weston vibe. Calvin tries to help Lissa and give her some advice, but then is also easily led by Lissa.

And then there is Mr. Clarke-he is so Mr. Knightley. He tries to help Lissa, instructing her in books, schools, and life.

They even dance together and quote from Emma (although that’s not something I think Mr. Clarke should have with all the teacher/student romantic relationships that have been in the news.)

This has nothing to with Emma, but Lissa’s little sister-ouch. Lissa should have told her father that her sister makes awful decisions about boys and will be ending up pregnant or with an STD if dad doesn’t get into checking on her. But really Lissa, giving your skeezy boyfriend’s number to your young, naive, impressionable sister and setting them up to all kinds of things together alone-reminds me of my friend Shannon, who had her friend Samantha tutor her boyfriend Vincent, and next thing you know-Vin and Sam were together.

Forget you!

So I know I have been harsh, as I said I don’t think this book was for me. I will say that I really enjoyed her writing style, it was a very engrossing read.

And I LOVE how she wove points and quotes from Jane Austen throughout her work. It is littered with it, and a fangirl’s delight.

She was able to tell a story based on a Jane Austen work, but it is something that an non-Austen fan can easily follow along with.

I also think that she made some very strong points and observations of Austen and her novels in her work. You might not agree with everything, but she has sound reasoning and presents a good case and an interesting view.

Hmmm….

I liked her depictions of teenagers and how Lissa thinks she knows everything, but is not as on it as she thought she was-falling for a narcissistic pig like so many young teens and women fall victim too.

As I said it was a hard review to write. I think it is definitely worth checking out, especially in light if the recent scandal and how far parents will go to get their kids into school. I mean bribing admissions so your kids can get in? I could see Mrs. Bennet doing it.

If you do read it, comment below what you think. I’d love to hear it.

For more Emma, go to Jane Austen Chinese Zodiac

For more Emma variations, go to Dangerous to Know, Jane Austen’s Rakes & Gentlemen Rogues: MODERATE

For more Pride and Prejudice, go to Dangerous to Know, Jane Austen’s Rakes & Gentlemen Rogues: MATURE

For more Pride and Prejudice variations, go to Why Do People Love Bridget Jones’ Diary?

For more Young Adult novels, go to Victoria and the Rogue

When You Shockingly Relate to Mr. Woodhouse

So I never thought I was like Mr. Woodhouse.

I don't think this really added to the story.

I mean he is a hypochondriac who never eats anything rich as it is bad for the digustion. So not me.

Whatever.jpg cheese fries

He won’t go out and pick strawberries, he is always nagging and worrying, freaks out over the littlest storm, just not me.

I don't think so

But then I reread the book…

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And something jumped out at me:

What! Mark Wahlberg that's weird

“Mr. Woodhouse was fond of society in his own way. He liked very much to have his friends come to see him…his horror of late hours, and large dinner-parties, made him unfit for any acquaintance but such as would visit him on his own terms.”

OMG gasp

Mr. Woodhouse is an introvert, just like me. And some of the stuff he does, I do too.

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First of all I don’t really care for big parties.

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I always feel awkward and unsure of what to do. Either I end up at the food table:

Or unsure

Or unsure

Or with children…

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They just seem easier to relate to I guess.

I'm still a kid on the inside.

I’m still a kid on the inside.

I mean if I don’t have a close friend there or if they have left or are too busy talking to someone else I feel awkward and uncomfortable.

BookinPurse

Usually I stay as long as I feel is polite and then get out of there.

Getting out of here

Getting out of here

If it is a small group or people I know well, I feel much more secure.

Emmatableeating

Like Mr. Woodhouse I like my group of friends that I know well, not a large group. Plans must be made ahead of time as well. I hate when someone just pops over. Usually I am a mess or I am in the middle of something and find it hard to leave.

Darcy P&P OMG Can't Even

Yes, the life of an introvert:

introvert

It’s not that I don’t like people, it is just that sometimes I need my time and space.

talonePartyMeBySelf

And other days I want to hang, but I just need time to prepare myself for a party.

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For more on Mr. Woodhouse, go to Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen

For more on Emma, go to The Austen Series: Amanda

The Austen Series: Amanda

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Amanda (The Austen Series) by Debra White Smith

So this book is a retelling of Jane Austen’s Emma, set in modern times Australia

Under Capricorn

I know, Australia was an odd choice for a retelling of Jane Austen. I mean most people in Austen’s time wouldn’t really like Australians as they would see them as robbers, thieves, criminals, etc.

I also had a few issues with it being Australian as I am not scholled in Australian. Sometimes they way they talked I had no idea what it was about.

What! Mark Wahlberg that's weird

But moving on…

Emmafakesmile

Amanda Wood Priebe (Emma Woodhouse) is a successful owner of a travel agency. She lives with her father and takes care of him as he is aging. Even though he doesn’t really need additional care.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

This was one of the problems I had with the book. In Emma, her father was destroyed with the death of his wife and became the biggest hypochondriac and worrywart you could ever imagine. He ages exponentially and this is why Emma want to stay and take care of him. She knows that he needs her or will fall apart, and that factors into her decision to never leave or ever marry.

Emma

In this he is confident, lucid, and perfectly al;e to take care of himself with maybe a little extra help. There is no reason why she feels the need to stay with him. In fact it is kinda weird…

awkward-look-on-face1

So Amanda’s best friend is her secretary Haley Schmitz (Harriet Smith). She is currently dating Roger a farmer, who Amanda feels isn’t right for her. Instead she wants to set her up with the new music minister, Mason Eldridge.

EmmaWoodhouse

Her other best friend is Nathan Knighton (Mr. Knightley) owner of a well to do department store. He is also the younger brother of the man that Emma’s sister married.

JAH_Mr-Knightley-Jeremy-Northam-jane-austens-heroes-9172970-1024-567

So the book mostly follows the story of Emma with a few differences.  Instead of a ball, Emma throws a yearly party at her agency. You know, small things like that.

No big deal

No big deal

So let’s go over first what I liked in this adaption.

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Nate Knitghton/Mr. Knightley

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I really liked the way that Smith wrote the Mr. Knightley character.

Say What

Yes. Unlike other adaptions, she really got into his head and showed aspects of the story from his point of view. Often authors only go so far, but I enjoyed how he interacted with Amanda/Emma and the other characters, how they built up his attraction, and his qualms about having a relationship with a friend, what if she doesn’t reciprocate? What if it goes bad?

Knightly proposel28o7_250

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Haley/Harriet

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The Harriet character was also done well. Giving her a background of foster care and being moved from place to place established the perfect level of insecurity to blindly follow all Amanda’s plans with matchmaking.

It makes sense why she would act this way.

It makes sense why she would act this way.

I also like how you see her love for Roger has a few insecurities with him going away and focusing on the business, coupled with her own insecurities and Emma’s manipulations; all creating the perfect breeding ground for her to be swayed to another. But at the same time we see how she is able to quickly move past that heartbreak of Mr. Elton (as she didn’t really like him), and return to her real love of Roger.

HIMYM TedLove you and not tolerate quirks

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Now what I didn’t like:

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Colonel Wood Priebe/Mr. Woodhouse

I already talked about the Mr. Woodhouse-Emma relationship, so let me move on.

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Christian but Not Really

guardyourheart

Another thing I didn’t like about this book was that it marketed itself as Christian but isn’t really.

Ryan-Gosling-Oh-No-You-Didnt-Half-Nelson

In reality the the praying or  when they talk about their “relationship” with God is just a footnote or an afterthought.

Blah, blah

I mean write if you want to write a non-Christian retelling of Emma then write it. If you want it to be Christian then write that. Just don’t give me this lukewarm mess that is “Christian” but only a smatter. I mean go big or not at all, no in between.

No thank youhowaboutno

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 Amanda/Emma

Emma

So to our final piece, the one that carries it all…how did she do?

Emma_Buggin

I did not like the character of Amanda.

Something is not right!

Mostly because Emma just didn’t work in this modern setting.

No thank youhowaboutno

In Jane Austen’s work, Emma is from a wealthy class and doesn’t really have any friends her equal to spend her time with; especially with her sister and governess married. She is extremely lonely and bored.

Bones David Bored I;m bored boring

She begins manipulating, not out of spite, but because it is far interesting than another night alone with her dad, reading, just doing the same old thing. It doesn’t fit with Amanda having this other outlet, as she is great at her job and her work is something she loves. Australia is not as constrained by “social standing” so there isn’t the same level of alienation either. Instead of being bored and turning to matchmaking, she just comes off a controlling manipulator who only cares about herself.

incontrolchucknorris

It just didn’t work; instead of the character being lovable or enjoyable she just seemed cold and cruel. A real “Mean Girl”, if you know what I mean.

MeanGirls I know right!

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So in conclusion? I didn’t like it.

dislike hate you

I mean some parts were good like Harriet and Mr. Knightley’s modern counterparts, but on a whole the book was kinda boring and just didn’t work without a fantastic main character, Emma/Amanda.

No thank youhowaboutno

If I were you, I would just pass this one by.

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For more books based on Jane Austen’s work, go to The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen

For more on Emmago to Is This Really Just the Same?: Daring Chloe

For more Emma variations, go to Emma (1996) AKA the Kate Beckinsale Version

For more on bible verses, go to I’d Lay Down My Life for You: Pocahontas (1995)

Emma (1996) AKA the Kate Beckinsale Version

So when I say I’ll be reviewing Emma (1996), most people think about this:

Emma1996

I however will be talking about this:

emma1996

So this film follows the book of Emma pretty accurately. It doesn’t have everything, of course, as it is only a hour and 47 minutes, but it does a good job. So how I am going to do this review is a bit different, instead of looking at the storyline I am going to review how the characters were portrayed and the set design.

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Set

Emmatableeating

So let’s look at the indoor set featured above. Now I know that A&E Television was trying to go for a more realistic feel, but heads up movie writers; if we cannot see the action happening then you need to skip “accurate” for enjoyable. Nobody wants to spend their money on something that can’t tell them what is happening.

what what'shappeningSupernatural

I agree that the chiaruscuro and candlelight is a nice effect, but not worth it. It is like when you watch Onegin and you have those scenes where you have no clue what anything looks like. Good thing for Ralph Fiennes’ amazing voice.

The rooms also lacked any pizazz or beauty.

Bones David Bored I;m bored boring

The outdoors were extremely lovely, and kudus to the screenwriters who show how the servants had to carry every component of the picnic up the hill for their Box Hill little party. That was great.

notgoodveronicamarsbadday

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Costumes

ball-in-emma-300x291

So while Emma (1996) aka Gwyneth Paltrow Version had this absolutely beautiful and stunning costumes, this version’s ones were so boring. I mean even Catherine had better things  than what the very rich Emma wore in this.

And “poor” Elizabeth also wore more attractive and beautiful garments.

Pride&PrejudiceDarcyLetter

These ones were just too plain and not befitting someone as important as Emma. I mean even her ball gown was boring.

Mehsleepyhollownotimportant

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Mr. & Mrs. Weston

Mandatory Credit: Photo by ITV / Rex USA ( 525489SJ ) James Hazeldine and Samantha Bond in 'Emma' - 1996 ITV ARCHIVE

So in the book Miss Taylor turned Mrs. Weston was Emma’s governess, but in reality her confidant and best friend. While they don’t spend as much time together, with her married, in a new home, and concentrating on her new family; still they are buds. In this we hardly ever see Mrs. Weston and I can’t recall a scene in which she talks to Emma, except to warn her about Frank and Jane’s upcoming marriage. Great job there A&E turning her whole character into a little blimp in the story.

Mr. Weston also hardly has any scenes or interactions in this film, which is a complete shame as he is a incredibly cool guy.

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Harriet Smith

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This is one area where the film was fantastic. I have not seen a portrayal of Harriet Smith as fantastic as the one done by Samantha Morton.

Wow

Wow

In this she doesn’t play Harriet as the empty flower pot or the kind-hearted klutz; instead Morton focused on the aspect of Harriet’s unknown parentage and ran with it in her presentation of the character. Before I watched this film, I never thought of what Harriet went through not knowing who her parents were. I mean if you think of how people treated those who were in a slightly lower class, but respectable (like the Bennets in Pride & Prejudice) imagine how they would treat someone who is unknown. When someone would not claim their child as their own, it typically meant an illegitimate birth, usually the mistress. So those girls in school were most likely not interested in becoming besties with Harriet, or having anything at all to do with her.

Noo!

Aw

This completely explains why Harriet is so eager to do everything Emma says. After so long of being alone; family-less and friendless, she finally has someone who cares about her and will do whatever she can to keep it.

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I have to say one of the best scenes is when Emma is chattering away about how Harriet’s father must be an important gentleman and you see Harriet looking down, brokenhearted saying something like I hope so.

Hope

The way she acts around Robert is also just adorable. You can tell she is crazy about him, but also scared. Scared of being abandoned again, rejected by her friend Emma, and making the wrong decision as she has no family to guide her.

I don't know what to do

Great job Morten.

And I truly mean it

And I truly mean it

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Jane Fairfax

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Jane Fairfax is Emma’s character foil. While Emma doesn’t play piano well, paints okay, doesn’t read, has a meager education as she isn’t into studies, enjoys meddling, can be rude or snobby, and likes to do what she wants without thinking of others; Jane is the opposite. Jane is a superb piano player, an excellent painter, enjoys reading, has a high level of education, enjoys privacy, is kind, compassionate, and considerate of others. A regular Goofus and Gallant, (J.K. I love Emma). This is one of the reasons why Emma dislikes Jane, as she is envious of what she has accomplished.

Person hate talking

However, in this film they didn’t show that at all. Emma dislikes Jane, but we hardly see them react or why Emma is so jealous. We don’t hear others praise Jane, and the conversation when Emma is pumping Jane for information wasn’t intriguing.

This Jane hardly even seemed there, she wasn’t a very intriguing nemesis.

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Mr. & Mrs. Elton

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So Mr. & Mrs. Elton are some of the villians in the novel and film. Mr. Elton proposes to Emma and when she refuses him he is extremely rude to her and Harriet; going out of town and picking out a shrew of a woman to be his wife.

hate her

In this depiction they didn’t have as much of a role. We see them for the crucial scenes of Elton proposing, them cutting Harriet, and so and so.

I didn’t like their depiction as they are supposed to be more hatable. You are supposed to extremely dislike them and want bad things to befall them.

GoldenGirlsEat&DieTrash

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Mr. Frank Churchill

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Frank Churchill is also supposed to be the villian in the book. At first he seems like a nice, sweet guy, courting Emma; but in reality he is a major jerk. He ignores his father, ignores his real fiancé, and leads Emma on.

How rude

The Frank Churchill wasn’t quite as sleazy as he should have been, in my opinion, but he did a good job. He had a painted on smile and gave off an air of insincerity; which worked really great. This actor did a great job and I give him a ten.

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Mr. George Knightley

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I thought this was the worst depiction of Mr. Knightley. Where to start? Well first of all his hair. Why did they pick that particular hairstyle? It looks too mulletish and makes him have the appearance of a receding hairline.

ew! Gross Yuck

My biggest issue with Mark Strong as Knightley is that he is just too brooding to be Knightley. Knightley is older, but still relaxed enough to be best friend with Emma and joke around with her. He is serious but can also have fun.

Strong as Knightley is just brooding all the time and whenever he talks his eyes flash and he practically yells in anger. He makes me think of the Beast in Beauty and the Beast the way he reacts to everything and everyone.

Beauty and the Beast

I thought Strong made the character too dark, he would have been better as a Darcy than a Knightley.

I also didn’t like the scene of him with baby Emma, that was a little too weird. And the scene he announces his proposal he sounds as of he is yelling at everyone as if he is planning to destroy them all.

Gilmore girls creep

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Emma Woodhouse

emma kate beckinsale

I really hated this version of Emma. I thought Beckinsale was a horrible actor, just kind of staring off into space and being blank and like a piece of wood.

If she wasn’t being totally deadpan she had this creepy expression on her face like she wanted to devour everyone like a female praying mantis.

I thought it was horribly bland and boring.

Bones David Bored I;m bored boring

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Ending conclusion:

Something is not right!

I thought the way the characters were portrayed was boring, the transitions weird, and the film all around mediocre. There was no fun to it and the actors talked as if they were being paid an extra bonus if they could finish their lines in under three seconds.

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For more on Emma, go to Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can’t Lose: Superbowl 50

For more Emma adaptations, go to Mr. Knightley’s Diary

For more Jane Austen films, go to I Don’t Want You Far From Me: Sense and Sensibility (1995)

For more Jane Austen adaptations, go to The Confession of Fitzwilliam Darcy

Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen

So you all know how much I love Disney:

Disney

And how much I love Jane Austen:

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So one day I was thinking about Disney and thinking of Jane Austen, when it hit me. If the Austen characters were Disney characters who would they be?

The plot thickens

So I thought and thought and thought some more. And below is my list of the perfect Disney/Austen crossover.

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A Prideful Beauty & the Prejudiced Beast

(Beauty & the Beast meets Pride & Prejudice: scenario one)

So Beauty and the Beast was the natural choice for the Darcy/Elizabeth storyline. In Pride & Prejudice Elizabeth becomes angry at Darcy, hurt by his comments on her looks, therefore fueling her dislike of him. Darcy, on the other hand, realizes he was wrong and falls for Elizabeth, slowly having to show her he is a good man, despite his bad first impression.

Just like in Pride & Prejudice, Belle has to work through her own misgivings of the Beast, his looks and her anger at him imprisoning her father. The Beast, first rude to her, realizes his mistakes and works on showing her his true heart and soul under the ugly exterior. Just like in P&P Darcy is seen as “a beast”, rude and cruel; but by the end of the book, and Disney film, we are loving both men.

Elizabeth Bennet = Belle

Elizabeth_Belle

Both Belle and Elizabeth Bennet are avid readers, close to their fathers, and not afraid to speak their minds. They both come from middle class family, as they have land (and farm but not for necessity). The Bennets have the estate of Longbourn, and Belle’s father Maurice have their country land. Maurice must have some money from his family as his inventions don’t work very well enough to bring money in.

As mentioned before, both characters create judgements on Mr. Darcy and the Beast based on their initial view of looks (Darcy’s scowl & Beast’s beastiel form) along with their behavior. However, over time this opinion is changed as their heroes save them (Elizabeth’s family saved when Wickham marries Lydia, and Belle is saved from wolves); along with both realizing there is much more to the man than their prickly personality.

Mr. Darcy = The Beast/Prince Adam

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Like Beast, Darcy is the only son raised in a wealthy family with a lot of power and expectations of him. Darcy also has a temper, but it is more controlled than the Beast’s. Both have to learn a lesson on character, the Beast’s inability to see more than the outer shell of a person, while Darcy’s is more of getting past a preconceived notion.

While they initially are prickly characters they change themselves in order to win the woman they love. Both also are willing to do things for the woman they love with no expectations. For Darcy he saves Elizabeth’s family for Elizabeth, and while he still cares for her, he doesn’t use that as a bargaining chip for marriage, allowing her to act on her own feelings. The Beast lets Belle out of the deal they made and allows her to leave, even though it breaks his heart. He doesn’t try to use their contract or the fact that he saved her life to try and manipulate her to stay.

Mr. Wickham = Gaston

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Although in the Disney film Gaston doesn’t play as much a love interest to Belle as Wickham was to Elizabeth; he is instrumental in painting an ugly picture of the Beast and getting the town riled up to destroy him. Yep, just like Wickham does. In fact I think this is one of the best Disney pairings. Both men are arrogant, care only about their outside appearance and women who will provide something for them. For Wickham he uses Elizabeth to spread lies about Darcy, and then tries to go after the very wealthy Miss King to have a poke at her money. For Gaston, he wants Belle to gain the ultimate trophy and to have children as good looking as him. Both care only for themselves, and use others achieve whatever they want.

For  more on Pride & Prejudice, go to The Confession of Fitzwilliam Darcy

For more on Beauty and the Beast, go to Number Two Look Just Like You

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A Little Prideful & Prejudiced Mermaid 

(Pride & Prejudice meets The Little Mermaid: scenario two)

Now you may wonder why I included this as another avenue for Pride & Prejudice. While I don’t see Jane as much of a main character in the novel, her role is important and I felt that Beauty and the Beast didn’t capture the whole of Pride & Prejudice, specifically her part.

So both The Little Mermaid and Pride & Prejudice address people of two different worlds falling for each other and others trying to keep them apart.

Jane Bennet = Ariel

JaneBennet_Ariel

Out of all the Disney characters I see Jane as Ariel. Both are kind, naive, the prettiest of the family, and don’t always understand other’s views of them. For instance Grimsby heavily disapproves of Eric spending so much time with this unknown girl, of which Ariel blindly does not see. She also can’t tell that Ursula is EVIL. Mr. Bingley’s sisters despise Jane’s family and are rather cruel to her, but Jane too cannot see this, instead always giving them the benefit of the doubt. Both Jane and Ariel fall for a man out of their league: in Ariel’s case a human, while for Jane a much wealthier man; however that doesn’t stop them as they go after what their heart desires. Both also have issues with a parent: Ariel her controlling father and Jane her controlling mother. But in the end they are able to get win their man and happiness.

Charles Bingley = Prince Eric

bingleyPrinceEric

Prince Eric is a sweet, kind character, who follows his own ideas but is still susceptible to what others advise; just like Bingley. While Eric cares for Ariel and is set on making the girl who saved him his wife, he still listens to Grimsby’s cautions and of course is completely controlled by the Sea Witch’s hypnosis. Bingley tolerates all the negative things his sisters have to say, planning on persuing Jane, but he finally gives way to Darcy’s powerful persuasion. But both men when they realize they have made the wrong choice, go back and do all they can to win the woman of their dreams. Both marry girls that are below them (Jane financially, Ariel literally as in under the sea), but yet their equal (Jane and Bingley same personalities, Eric and Ariel are both royalty).

Caroline Bingley = Grimsby

carolineGrimsby

Caroline and Grimsby are very similar. As a sister to Charles, Caroline is constantly giving her opinion on matters. She is the one that criticizes Jane (and her family), along with pointing out what is improper. Grimsby is an advisor to Prince Eric, doing the same thing. Both aren’t listened to, as Charles and Eric ignore their rules and suggestions to follow their heart and own ideas.

Both Grimsby and Caroline also disapprove in the matters of the heart. Caroline sees Jane as too far below their family, along with carrying the extra baggage of her mother and embarrassing sisters. Grimsby also doesn’t approve of Ariel as they know nothing about her, and she can’t talk. Grimsby wants Eric to settle down, but with a more suitable person, liking Vanessa (secretly Ursula), just as Caroline wants someone better than Jane for her brother, Georgina Darcy. In aligning the two, she hopes that she and Darcy will grow much closer.

Mr. Darcy = Ursula

DarcyUrsula

I know, I know you are probably thinking what? Yes in this scenario of Jane Austen/Disney, Darcy doesn’t get a favorable character. Then again it is fitting that he is paired up with the villianess as if we were to look at Pride & Prejudice from Jane’s view, he is kinda the villain of the story.

Now the two aren’t exactly similar, Darcy has his best friend’s interest at heart while Ursula is after global domination. However, both are similar in the fact that they don’t want the romantic leads together. Darcy feels that Jane has a lot of baggage (mother + sisters) but that she also doesn’t really seem to care strongly for Charles. In The Little Mermaid, Ursula wants Ariel to fail to get Eric’s kiss and heart so that she can have her as a slave and exchange her life for Ariel’s father’s powers.

Now here is where the real similarity comes into play. These two are the only ones capable of true persuasion. In Pride & Prejudice, Caroline and Bingley’s other sister have done everything they can to point out why marrying Jane would be a bad idea. They constantly criticize, point out every faux pas, etc; but Charles will not listen. He’s in love. That is until Darcy advises him. Charles clearly relies more heavily on Darcy than his own intuition, and leaves Netherfield for London. In The Little Mermaid, Eric isn’t set on marrying Ariel, but he definitely starts thinking about her as more than a friend. He won’t listen to Grimsby, who keeps saying that it is a bad idea to get involved with a girl you know nothing about. The only thing that steers him away from Ariel, is Ursula’s transformation into Vanessa.

For more Pride & Prejudice, go to Darcy’s Story: Pride and Prejudice Told From a Whole New Perspective

For more The Little Mermaid, go to The Little Moreland

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A Frozen Sense & Sensibility

(Frozen meets Sense & Sensibility)

So I am pretty sure you saw this one coming, after all how many Disney films have two very close sisters (in relationship and age)? I couldn’t think of that many. Both Frozen and Sense & Sensibility revolve around sisters, one who’s feelings are heavily regulated (sense) while the other is more out and sharing whatever comes to mind (sensibility). A parent’s death strongly affects the family and shifts everything about them. One sister falls for a horrible guy, but luckily for her the real deal is waiting nearby. There also is a real comedy about a couple trying to match two off.

Elinor = Elsa

elinor_Elsa

Other than the ice powers, Elinor and Elsa are very similar. Both are the eldest in their families and trying to keep everything together in their home after a parental death (Elinor her father, Elsa both parents). While their younger sister is allowed to be more freewheeling, Elinor and Elsa do not share the same luxury. They control their emotions because if they didn’t either the family would fall apart (as in Elinor’s case she is the one taking control of everything) or there could be a lot of destruction (Elsa’s ice). Both experience moments of total release that shock all closest to them, Elinor when she reveals the pain she has experienced of her love for Edward, and Elsa’s finally “letting go”. In the end both stop keeping such a harsh rein on their emotions and allow themselves to open up and love.

Both also care deeply about their sisters, especially in the love department. Elinor is the only one who doesn’t trust the relationship with Willoughby, as she thinks Marianne is moving way too fast with a boy she just met. Elsa is the same way, refusing her blessing on Anna marrying a guy she just met and only knows a few things about. Besides that, both girls care deeply for their sisters.

And let’s not forget a similarity in names. (Just saying!)

Marianne = Ana

marianneanna

Both are romantics who don’t believe in reigning in their feelings but expressing everything. As feelings guide them, they tend to rush into things not clearly thinking them through and acting on their heart. Marianne gets involved with a man she hardly knows anything about, and later when brokenhearted tries to go to after him in a storm, nearly killing herself. Anna also gets involved with a man she hardly knows anything about, along with trekking after her sister in a storm, whilst wearing summer clothing.

While both have bond with their sister they also are very distanced. Marianne doesn’t understand Elinor’s sense and feels she cannot express all her thoughts with her. She also knows her sister would disapprove of much she does. Ana has a more physical separation, as her sister avoids her, but also shares that sense of not understanding Elsa’s actions, along with being afraid of what she might think of her (check out that awkward ballroom scene where they run into each other).

Now let’s move back to their love interests. At first Marianne falls for a handsome, romantic hero guy she has just met, only to find out that he is only interested in one thing: money. As Marianne doesn’t have it, he leaves her. At first she is broken hearted, but she later realizes that she is better off without him and instead ends up with the guy who started out as just a friend, but turned out to be the grand prize. Ana follows a similar route as her “first love” turns to be false as he is only after her kingdom, dumping her when realizes he can get it another way. She too is hurt initially, but quickly realizes that her friend who liked her all along, is the real deal and perfect for her

They too share similar names. I’m sensing a theme here Disney.

Willoughby = Hans

WilloughbyHans

First of all sideburns. Seriously did Disney decide that Austen made better source material than the original fairy tale Hans Christian Anderson wrote?

Moving past that, both are men who are after a good time and searching for the women who will net their fortune. For Willoughby, he loves Marianne, but he loves his money much more. After spending all his time with her and making her believe he loved her (which some argue he did have strong feelings for her, his love of money just overpowered it) he ends up leaving her, trading her in for a model that could support his expensive habits. He also proves to be a true scoundrel, sleeping with other women and abandoning them with a ruined reputation and no hope of marriage or a happy future.

For Hans he too is lacking the wealth, being the 13th son, and is setting his eyes on a woman who will provide the lifestyle he wishes. While originally planning on marrying Ana, when an opportunity comes where he can have everything without her, he quickly dumps her for his second plan. His character is darker than Willoughby’s though, as he actually plans to murder both sisters to achieve his means.

 

Colonel Brandon = Kristoff

ColBrandomKristoff

While they may different financially (Colonel Brandon with his manor house and wealth while Kristoff is an ice cutter) everything else about them is very similar.

Both share sad backstories: Colonel Brandon losing the girl he loved, and after her death caring for her child from another man; and Kristoff being orphaned and on his own with a reindeer (although later adopted by trolls).

Both men are rugged outdoorsmen: Colonel Brandon does fencing, horseback riding, a falconer, a soldier, etc. Kristoff is an ice cutter, sledder, etc. They match brain with brawn, a winning combination. Both are also loyal, intelligent, appreciative of beauty and fine craftsmanship.

Unfortunately for them, they also are surrounded by well-meaning people that actual harm their chances rather than help them. For Colonel Brandon, he and Marianne were becoming friends and getting along very well…that is until Sir John and Lady Middleton try to push them together; upsetting Marianne and making her not want to consider Colonel Brandon out of spite. For Kristoff, the trolls don’t damage his chances as much, but they certainly do not win him any consideration from Ana in the moment they attempt to wed them off.

But how they are the most similar is the way in which they love so whole-heartedly that they are willing to do anything to ensure that the woman they love has her happiness. For Colonel Brandon, he loves Marianne but when he realizes that she cares for Willoughby he steps aside. He knows tons of damaging things about him, has enough money to pay him off, could do countless things to get rid of him; but if he makes Marianne happy that is all he cares about. He later does challenge Willoughby to a duel when he breaks Marianne’s heart, and of course does all he can to help her; never pushing or manipulating, but allowing her to make the decision of whether to pursue a relationship or not. With Kristoff he loves Ana, but as he knows she is engaged does nothing to truly hinder the relationship. He helps her get to Hans, as he wants only her happiness. But just like Colonel Brandon, when his lady is in trouble he is there to help her, coming to her rescue.

Both characters also have a scene where they are carrying the women they love through a storm as she grows sicker and sicker. Wow these are some serious parallels.

Sir John and Lady Middleton = Trolls

SirJohnTrolls

These guys are like carbon copies of each other I swear! Sir John and Lady Middleton are sweet people, who heavily assist the downtrodden and financially insecure Dashwoods. They provide the family with a place to live, food they cannot afford, trips they would be unable to take etc. The only downside? They are busybodies and enjoy actively taking a role into marrying Marianne off, something that backfires as their involvement makes her lose any desire to even be friends with Colonel Brandon.

The trolls also take in some downtrodden, lost souls: Kristoff and Sven; adopting them and giving them a family, food, and a place to live. They also like to meddle, trying to marry Ana and Kristoff off, backfiring as their weirdness makes Ana say no way.

For  more on Sense and Sensibility, go to The Sense and Sensibility Screenplay and Diaries

For more on Frozen, go to I Could Kiss You

 

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Cindermansfield Parkella

(Mansfield Park meets Cinderella)

So Cinderella is a story we all have heard of. A sweet kind girl is forced to slave away for her family. Those that bring her particular pain are her evil stepmother and two evil stepsisters. She manages to escape her dreary life for a ball, where she meets the man of her dreams. But unfortunately there are others with a darker intentions making the same play for him.

Mansfield Park may be a story you have never heard of before, but it make shock you with the similarities it has. A sweet kind girl is forced to slave away for her richer family. Those that bring her particular pain are her evil aunt and two evil cousins. She falls in love with the man of her dreams, but unfortunately there is another with a darker heart making the same play.

Fanny = Cinderella

FannyCinderella

This is the most obvious choice for this novel. Fanny Price is the niece to the Betram family, and was sent to stay with them. Instead of being treated as family, she takes on the duties of a servant because of her “bad blood” inherited from the low class, wastral father her mother married down to. She is particularly mistreated by her evil aunt and two cousins; all of which take pride in bossing her around and being as cruel as can be. Cinderella is the stepdaughter, and technically rightful heir, but instead of being treated as a part of the family, she too is treated like a servant to her evil stepmother and two stepsisters. Like Fanny, Cinderella is the essence of swetness, taking this injustice in stride and trying to remain optimistic in a bad situation. Both know that any kind of rebellion could spell disaster for them; with Fanny being sent back to the hovel she escaped and Cinderella being sold, institutionalized, or worse.

Both have absentee fathers: Fanny’s father is a drunkard while Cinderella’s is dead; who’s decisions ultimately caused their predicament. With Fanny her father being one of so low behavior and drinking all his money away; causes her family to have to send her somewhere else as they cannot care for her. This behavior causes those in the “richer” family to believe they have the right to treat her like garbage. For Cinderella, her father married evil incarnate who makes her life horrible.

Both fall in love with a man out of their league: Fanny with her cousin Edmund and Cinderella with the Prince. While initially their love interest is waylaid by other women; for Edmund the enigmatic and manipulative Mary Crawford, and the Prince with the other woman who claim to be the girl he fell for; those turn out to be false and the girls get their dream guy. And in true poetic justice, those that tried to hurt them end up getting their just desserts for their evil ways and bad decisions.

Mrs. Norris = Lady Tremaine

mrsNorrisLadyTremaine

In Mansfield Park Mrs. Norris is Fanny’s aunt and a horribly cruel woman. She loves her nieces Maria and Julia, treating them far better than Fanny; along with encouraging and rewarding their cruel ways, especially those aimed at Fanny. Lady Tremaine also encourages her daughter’s cruelty: from horrible nicknames, cruel jokes, and even assault. Watch that scene where they rip Cinderella’s dress, that was pretty psychologically and physically damaging.

Mrs. Norris enjoys bossing Fanny around and often asks her to do more than then her frail system can take. Lady Tremaine is the same way, asking impossible tasks as she takes true delight in seeing Cinderella suffer.

Both also are trying to ensure that their girls marry well, have a good fortune, and anything else that pleases them. Mrs. Norris encourages Maria’s choice in the wealthy, but dim, Mr. Rushworth and later her infidelity with Henry Crawford. Lady Tremaine is intent on marrying her daughters off to a prince, stooping to locking Cinderella up, breaking the glass slipper, and almost destroying her daughters feet.

Drizzella = Maria Bertram

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It was difficult to determine which evil cousin went with which evil stepsister, but I think I found the match that worked best.

Both Julia and Drizzella are favored by their aunt and mother. Both also are intense in going after what they want; Maria a rich husband and later a hot lover; Drizzella having no qualms about stuffing her foot into a strange shoe and pretending to be a women she isn’t in order to bag a prince.

Both are especially cruel to the heroine, being the bigger bully between them and their sister. Both also have restrained relationships with their sister, always in competition with them and trying to prove they are prettier, better, etc.

In the end, both lead unhappy lives, having to deal with the decisions they made. Maria losing her lover and husband, sent away to live in exile; while Drizzella has to live with her mother and probably has to take on chores as Cinderella leaves them behind with her prince.

Anastasia = Julia Bertram

Julia_Anastasia

Julia and Anastasia are always being compared to their older sister and feeling they are lacking. Both try to compensate by trying their hardest to outshine their sibling, or at certain times out cruel them. Both are also not the favorite and have more insecurities about who they are and how they look.

Now one of the reasons why I felt these two were a good fit, is that both fall for someone their parents strongly disapprove of. For Julia, she runs off with her brother’s actor friend, eloping in Ireland. Her parents hate this, disowning her and wondering where they could have gone wrong. In Cinderella II: Dreams Come True, Anastasia falls for the baker, a man her mother strongly disapproves of. She doesn’t run off and marry him; but does go behind her mother’s back to get a makeover and go to a ball with him.

Edmund = Prince Charming

Edmund Prince

Edmund is my least favorite of the Austen heroes and Prince Charming my least favorite Disney prince. It is only right that they are the two that match up.

While my dislike for Prince Charming comes more from a lack of character, my dislike for Edmund comes from his stupidity, easy manipulated spirit, and love of a fantasy that doesn’t exist. When the girl has told you time and time again that she could never marry a minister and wants someone with money, don’t think that “your love” can “change” her. Forget her and move on.

Sorry this was supposed to be a comparison. Both Edmund and Prince Charming were born into wealthy families with controlling fathers. For Edmund, his father does not want him to be a minister but chose the vocation he had picked out, and for Prince Charming his father wants him married and making grandchildren. Both men want to live the lives they have desired, with Edmund choosing to go into the church and the Prince waiting, and later choosing an unconventional bride.

Both men are stubborn, tenacious, and when they set their mind to something they will not be persuaded out of it. For Edmund it is the church, and later wooing Mary Crawford. For the Prince, he wants the women who fits the slipper even if they have to search every corner and crevice of the kingdom for her.

Both marry women that are kind, sweet, and of not completely low standing, but not quite on par with them. And both marriages turn out great for them, much better than their siblings’ (Edmund’s & Cinderllas’s).

For more Mansfield Park, go to Opening With…

For more Cinderella, go to If the Shoe Fits: Why Cinderella is Actually Awesome

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Tarzan & Emma

(Tarzan meets Emma)

I know that this pairing isn’t perfect but it is the only one I could find that correlated well together. None of the other Disney characters were even remotely like Emma or had the close relationship she had with her father.

Emma= Jane

EmmaJane

Emma is a wealthy woman and the apple of her father’s eye. She often does as she pleases, believing that her ways and knowledge are right. She sets her mind to tasks at hand and does all she can to achieve them, not always thinking things through or realizing that she cannot control every person’s actions.

Jane isn’t as wealthy but does come from a well to do family. She is also the apple of her father’s eye as they too share a great bond. When they are searching for the gorillas, she too exhibits some of the I’ll do what I think is best and doesn’t always make the best decisions. With Emma it was pairing up two people, with Jane threatening a baby baboon.

Both of these girls try to remold someone into what is the highest level of society, but it doesn’t quite go according to plan.

They also try to prove that they now better with their planning and scheming, but end up being proved wrong by someone who knows better; for Emma it is Mr. Knightley, and for Jane Tarzan.

Both girls have these amazing guys in love with them, but at first don’t realize and then secondly don’t really want it. Emma doesn’t realize for the longest time that Mr. Knightley is head over heels for her; and when she does she is at first ecstatic, but then doesn’t want it as she is worried about what her poor father will do without her. Knightley of course comes up with the perfect solution and the two live happily ever after. Jane also takes a long time to realize how much Tarzan cares for her and is then worried about how it will work out. Can he really handle English society? Could she survive in Africa? What about her father? In the end all works out.

Like I said not a perfect match, but the closest I could get.

Mr. Woodhouse = Professor Archimedes Q. Porter

Mr.WoodhouseDr.Porter

Both Mr. Woodhouse and Prof. Porter are single dad’s, having lost their wives to an illness. While this made Mr. Woodhouse shrink from fear and Prof. Porter live more dangerously; one thing is the same with both. It made them concentrate and rely more heavily on their daughter.

For Mr. Woodhouse he would have died from depression, if not for his two girls; particularly Emma. She remains by his side constantly, tending to his ever fear and worry; enveloping him with love and care.

For Prof. Porter, why do you think he has Jane as an assistant and not a man? Sure he could have done it because she was intelligent enough to handle it, but I think it goes deeper than that. I believe that like Mr. Woodhouse, he became so concentrated on his daughter after the death of his wife that he wanted her always with him. Training her in his field (whether society approved or not) and having her always journey with him. In fact that is why he decides to give up the modern world and remain with his daughter. He couldn’t stand being apart from her.

Mr. Knightly = Tarzan

KnightleyTarzan

Some of you are thinking maybe Tarzan should be Harriet as both Emma and Jane take on pet projects in improving someone, but I think the Mr. Knightley/Tarzan comparison works too.

So both men are from wealthy English families, the ones to inherit all the land, manors, and titles. (Read Tarzan the book.)

Both sometimes give the appearance they don’t know what is going on; Mr. Knightley being older and as Emma believes uneducated in matters of the heart; while Tarzan seems too “stupid” by the animals to be a true ape and too “beastlike” by the humans to ever master English society. However they have a whole more going on that the other characters expect. First Knightley is spot on about everybody; Emma, Jane & Frank, Harriet & Robert, Mr. Elton; proving to Emma time and time again that he knows what’a what.

Tarzan too proves to everyone that not only is he capable of being King of the jungle, but mastering every aspect of human society (except sarcasm and lying). Jane may believe at first that she knows more, but quickly realizes the knowledge that Tarzan has is something much deeper than what she knows.

Both fall for the girls, Knightley for Emma and Tarzan for Jane; of which the women take forever to realize. Both men do their best to cultivate the relationship, but not push too hard that they may lose them. In the end all works out with them both gaining a father-in-law as well.

Frank Churchill= Clayton

ChurchillClayton

So while Clayton is much more evil being a poacher; both men are liars, betrayers of trust, manipulators, only care about themselves and what they need, etc. Ugh horrible men.

Frank Churchill is the son of Mr. Weston but was sent to live with his mother’s family after she died and adopted by them. He never cares to come see his father or spend anytime, being far too busy with his own things. The only reason he does come visit his father is that he is secretly engaged to a member of the community. But instead of letting people know of his involvements, he pretends to court another girl, Emma, playing with her heart and stabbing a knife through his “beloved’s”. He not only lies about that that his actions, but manipulates the whole community, just to protect his secret. What a jerk!

With Clayton he too comes along on the expedition to “help” the Porters and “protect” them from any attacks; but in reality that is all a lie. He too has a secret engagement, and engagement to trap as many gorillas as possible. Not only is he playing the Porters, but also tries to manipulate Tarzan to achieve his means; not caring what happens to anyone else. What a jerk!

For more Emma, go to Mr. Knightley’s Diary

For more Tarzan, go to Episode VI: Return of the Favorite Movie Lines List

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A Sleeping Northanger Abbey Beauty

(Sleeping Beauty meets Northanger Abbey scenario 1)

So as I was thinking about what Disney films the characters of Austen matched up to, one of the firsts that popped up in my head was Northanger Abbey and Sleeping Beauty. I believe I might have mentioned some of their similarities in the past, but here we go with a full on comparison.

Catherine = Aurora

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Catherine Morland is a dreamer. While she spent her earlier years as a tomboy, participating in games with her brothers, running all around; as she grew she began to devour literature and began dreaming of the perfect man and adventure.

Aurora or Briar Rose, is the same. While her early days are more dramatic with a bethrol, curse, and having to be sent away; she grew up in the forest and don’t tell me she wasn’t a tomboy playing with the animals; running, climbing trees; etc. because I am 100% sure she was. As she grew older, she also began to dream; dream more than just the cottage hideaway and dream of her perfect match.

Catherine and Aurora are also kind, sweet, and adorable people. The type you love to have in your life.

Both Catherine and Aurora have “storybook” romances, as Catherine meets this tall, handsome stranger, with a great personality (Mr. Tilney) that no one really knows that much about but something about him seems to pull at her. For Aurora she meets a tall, handsome stranger in the forest, who has a great personality, (Prince Phillip) and is at first a little unsure as she doesn’t know him but something about him seems to pull at her heart.

Of course the road to love is never easy as John Thorpe has his eyes on Catherine, and Mr. Tilney’s father doesn’t approve of her as he thinks she isn’t wealthy enough for his son. For Aurora she has Maleficent who is trying to kill her and Prince Phillip’s father who thinks she is just some peasant girl.

Of course true love conquers all and all is set right in the end.

Mr. Tilney = Prince Phillip

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Mr. Tilney is Prince Phillip, no if, ands, or buts.

Both are sons to controlling fathers who want to dictate their lives to how they want it. General Tilney wants his son to not be a minister but to marry a very wealthy woman who will increase the family fortune. Prince Phillip’s father the King is set on Phillip marrying King Stefan’s daughter as it will not only unite the kingdom, but increase land and wealth. However, both of these sons have their own ideas. They don’t directly oppose their father in the beginning; as Mr. Tilney agrees to find a woman with wealth, and Philip does go through the betrothal ceremony; but when they find something they love and want they say good-bye dad.

In fact both of these men are willing to go to the end for who they care about. For Mr. Tilney, when his father discovers that Catherine isn’t as rich as he thought she was he sent her packing back home (she was visiting Miss Tilney). When Mr. Tilney returns from out of town he lets his father know that he is in love with Catherine, and that he will say good-bye to all his family money as he is in love and will marry her. Prince Phillip is the same way, willing to give up the throne for his lady love.

John Thorpe = Malificent

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While John Thorpe is a man with an agenda. He sees Catherine and assumes she is wealthier than she is, doing everything he can (and aided by his sister) to try and bag her. He is manipulative, a liar, and causes her pain in order to get what he wants. One of his most underhanded ways was to first get his sister to “become friends” with Catherine, gaining an inn; and second to try and make sure she made no other connections with anyone.

Malifcent also has her own agenda. She wants to hurt the royal family and curses a little baby to death. When it appears the fairies may have outsmarted her with sleep instead of death, she manipulates the game by pretending to be Aurora and capturing Prince Phillip, to keep him from freeing Aurora.

General Tilney = King Hubert

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General Tilney married for money rather than love and he has made that top priority for his own children. He wants them to increase the family coffers or else they get nothing! When he finds out that Catherine isn’t an heiress, he tosses her out of the house.

The King isn’t as cruel, but he too has definite ideas about matrimony. Marriage is a business deal and he wants his daughter-in-law to be Aurora who will bring peace, land, and money. He is most unhappy when his son wants to marry a peasant girl instead, but unlike Colonel Tilney he agrees to his son’s wishes. In fact he was planning on breaking the engagement, but the fairies sleeping spell took over before he could tell King Stefan.

For more on Northanger Abbey, go to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

For more on Sleeping Beauty, go to For She Filled Their Lives With Sunshine

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Northanger Aladdin

(Northanger Abbey meets Aladdin scenario 2)

So this one is probably something you never saw coming, but it just seemed to fit so right I had to include it as well.

Catherine = Aladdin

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Catherine is a girl from an okay family, but dreams of something more, some adventure. She is kind, sweet, and real gem. She is given the trip of a lifetime, when wealthy family friends include her on their trip to bath. There people assume she is richer than she is and she manages to catch the eye of the wealthier Mr. Tilney.

Aladdin is not as well off as Catherine, being an orphan living on the streets. He too wishes of better things; living in the palace, food, etc. Like Catherine he sort of is blessed with wealth, when he becomes master to a Genie. For both of these characters the wealth is only temporary; Catherine her trip and Aladdin his three wishes. With this new “life” Aladdin is able to recapture the eye of the princess.

Both have someone plotting against them and their happiness (for Catherine she has throne who is trying to get her for himself, while Aladdin has Jafar trying to remove him so that he can get the throne.)

Both have things turn sour when the real truth is revealed about them; although in Catherine’s defense she never lied about anything. Others lied about her. Anyways, that doesn’t stop General Tilney from removing her from the family homestead. In Aladdin’s case; his lies are revealed and when all find out he isn’t a prince, he too is sent packing by Jafar.

In the end they are able to overcome those trying to stop them and win the person of their dreams. Both fathers later relenting from their harsh stands.

Mr. Allen = Genie

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While Mr. Allan doesn’t play as large a role in the story as the Genie; both are instrumental in the changes they bring about in the main characters lives.

Mr. Allan not only finances the trip to Bath, but he and his wife also purchase some things for Catherine. He is the one who brings her into the world she would have been unable to visit; catching the attention of good and bad.

For the Genie he is more than a window dresser, he becomes Aladdin’s best bud. But like Mr. Allan he is the one changes the appearance and introduces the character to the world he had only previously dreamed of.

Mr. Tilney = Jasmine

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Both Mr. Tilney and Jasmine are headstrong people. Both have father’s who have a plan for their lives, but they are still allowed some wiggle room. For Mr. Tilney he must marry wealthy, but gets to choose whom. For Jasmine she has the stipulation that her man must be a prince, but her father has allowed her to pick which prince she wants to marry.

When both are faced with the challenge of falling in love with someone who does not fit the parameters set out by their fathers, they choose to ignore it. With Mr. Tilney, he risks disinheritance; while Jasmine chooses Aladdin anyway, causing her father to repeal his law.

General Tilney = Sultan

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As stated previously, both are men who are used to being in control. General Tilney first and foremost of his troops, and also his family having parameters they must follow. The Sultan has a whole country, along with his daughter.

Both desire their children to marry wealthy and titled, and are less then pleased when they pick someone below that. Both get very upset and threaten; but in the end change their minds. General Tilney allows Mr. Tilney to keep his inheritance after his marriage and the Sultan changes the law so that Jasmine can marry whomever she wishes.

Mr. Thorpe = Jafar

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This is probably one of the best comparisons as these men are very similar. Both are ambitious and want things out of their reach. For Thorpe he wants to marry way up, to a women who will take care of him with her inheritance; and Jafar wishes to be Sultan.

To get their ways both men do every underhanded thing they can think of. Mr. Thorpe talks Mr. Tilney down, saying how his family is strange, keeps Catherine away from the Tilneys, uses his sister to promote him; etc. Jafar also uses manipulation, hypnotism, thievery, and even plans to marry Jasmine (and then kill her) to achieve his means.

Both only care about themselves and achieving their own interests.

For more Northanger Abbey, go to It’s All Jane Austen’s Fault

For more Aladdin, go to Well I Feel Sheepish: Chinese New Year

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A Robin Hood Persuasion

(Persuasion meets Robin Hood)

These have similar parts of the story. Both involve sweethearts being unable to marry because of a war. Both have a story about a reversal of fortune after the war, changing their lives dramatically. Both also invove dim relations, and a power play with marriages.

Anne = Maid Marion

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Ann and Maid Marian are very similar. Both feel in love at an early age, but forgo marrying because a war was separating them. Even though they were apart from their sweetheart, they never stopped loving him or dreaming that he would come back.

Both are related to not the brightest or smartest of men. With Anne her father Walter is a horrible manager of money and only cares about his looks, for Maid Marian her cousin Prince John is the same.

They both find their relations trying to manuever marriages and relationships they do not desire. Sir Walter thinks that Mr. Elliot would be a good match, Anne however only has eyes for one man. For Maid Marian, Prince John pushes her at the Sheriff, but he cuts rather a lackluster picture next to Robin Hood.

Frederick Wentworth = Robin Hood

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These two’s characters don’t exactly match up perfectly, but are pretty close. While Fredrick starts off poor, but comes back from the war wealthy; Robin Hood is the opposite, being wealthy and coming home from the crusades with his home having been given away.

However, both has childhood sweethearts they wanted to marry, Frederick & Anne and Robin Hood & Maid Marian. They leave for war which prevents them from getting married and when they return they consider starting the relationship up again, but have some obstacles. For Fredrick, he has his pride and hurt over being rejected; for Robin he is now an outlaw which is no life for a Lady. Even with these issues, both continue to love from afar and once again, proving that in their case, absence allows the heart to grow fonder.

Mr. Elliot = Sheriff of Nottingham

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Mr. Elliot is the long estranged cousin and next in line for Sir Walter’s title, unless Sir Walter remarries and has a son. Mr. Elliot is all about himself and how he can advance, romancing three women to ensure his future. The Sheriff is another man that cares about titles and advancement. He commits some horrible acts in order to keep the job of Sheriff and stay on the good side of Prince John, where the money is currently coming from. Like Mr. Elliot, he isn’t below some bad acts; such as taking money from an injured man, hanging a priest, and cheating at a tournament.

Both characters also try to be a love interest to the main character, Mr. Elliot with Anne and the Sheriff with Maid Marian. They do this because of the advancements that it could bring them, for Mr. Elliot, Sir Walter may not care about siring a son, allowing his daughter to gain her mother’s title and Mr. Elliot Sir Walter’s title. And for Sheriff Nottingham, marrying the cousin of the King and Prince, that will only raise him up.

Sir Walter Elliot = Prince John

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So Sir Walter and Prince John are very, very similar. Both are pompous jerks that think they are more special than they are. And both have an affection for mirrors and their apperance. All Sir Elliot can do is look at himself, spending tons of money on mirrors and lotions. Prince John cares only about he how he looks as well, physically and with the public.

Both also have a bad sense of money, burning through it rapidly. Sir Walter loses so much money he has to move to Bath and rent out the family home. Prince John runs through so much money, he taxes the stuffing out of his people.

Both men also don’t care very much about their family, Sir Walter trying to keep all his children away, except his eldest who has taken on the “Lady’s” household duties; and Prince John who wants his brother to continue to be captured as he wants to stay in command.

For more on Persuasion, go to A Letter of Love: Persuasion (2007)

For more on Robin Hood, go to Oh Oh De Lally

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So I hope you enjoyed that list. It took a long time finding the perfect people, the best pictures. I started in September and just now managed to finish.

For more on similarities between Austen and other famous characters, go to A Bit Pottery About Jane Austen

For more Disney posts, go to A Modern Mummy: Under Wraps (1997)

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So today’s Christmas Carol is one that I love and one has been around for quite some time, Oh Come All Ye Faithful. 

This song was written in the 17th century, actual author unknown. Three claim to have written it: King John IV of Portugal, John Reading, and John Francis Wade. It was originally written in Latin and then later translated into English.

 It is a great song, uplifting and serene. I really enjoy the version by Celtic Woman.

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For more on Celtic Woman, go to Joy to the World

For more Christmas Carols, go to The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas to You)

All By Myself

Being alone can suck.

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And I’m not talking about being single or just having some fun by yourself, you know space away from people.

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I’m talking about being lonely. As in no best friends or people you can really talk to or hangout with.

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In fact, if we spend a  lot of time alone we can start doing things that we don’t normally do,

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And even going as far as doing things we didn’t think through.

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Which really explains Emma’s character.

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Yes, in the beginning of Emma, we read that her life has been pretty awesome:

“Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite some of the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her.”

Life is great.

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Until…

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Her governess gets married!

Say What

Come on, give me a second and I’ll explain.

So Emma lost her mother when she was a baby. To take care of her and her older sister, Isabella; Mr. Woodhouse hired a governess, Miss Taylor, but she was young and treated the girls more like her sisters than charges. In fact, after Emma’s older sister was married, Miss Taylor and Emma became the best of friends. BUT, with Miss Taylor’s marriage, that close companion is now gone. Not for good, but when your friend gets married, or in a romantic relationship with someone, your friendship changes. No longer does that person have as much time for you or free time, as they are now focused on someone else. No more Miss Taylor, just Mrs. Weston.

“It was true that her friend [Mrs. Weston] was only going half a mile from them; but Emma was aware that great must be the difference from a Mrs. Weston, only half a mile from them, and a Miss Taylor in the house…”

In losing Miss Taylor to Mr. Weston, Emma loses more than just a governess. She loses a sister, mother, friend, confidant, equal, etc. And is all by herself.

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“Her father and her were left to dine together, with no prospect of a third to cheer a long evening.”

Noo!

Noo!

But what about her father?

Well, Emma’s father is not the best companion. First of all she is a girl, and I don’t care what anyone says (looking at you Mean Girls 2), girls need other friends that are girls. Guy friends are great, but there are things you can’t talk about with them. Mainly,

Yep, that pretty much sums it up.

Yep, that pretty much sums it up.

And other stuff. Plus her father…well he’s not in the best place to be a young girl’s companion. Mr. Woodhouse married when he was much older, as was often done. So he is first of all, much, much older than Emma. He also is a hypochondriac and is always getting anxious about things. This is hard for Emma as she always has to takes care of him, be cheerful so he can be cheerful, and abide by his rules (really fears). She loves her father, but he isn’t the everyday companion she needs.

Now what about people in the town? Well…Emma is friendless there too. You see at this time in England, there was a social hierarchy, and Emma is at the top.

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It is pretty sweet to be the first family and everything, but not so much in this situation. Everyone is kind or civil to her and she is invited to all the events, but unfortunately no one is her equal. So no one can be her real friend. Except Miss Taylor, who now is busy with her new life as Mrs. Weston.

The only friend she has now is Mr. Knightley [but more on him later].

So you see it is very easy how a smart girl, can become lonely and bored being by herself…

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Turning to meddling in other’s affairs, not only for amusement but for what I believe is a desire to have a connection to other people. To feel “a part of the group” and involved.

Now does this turn out well?

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You’ll just have to keep reading to find out!

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For more on Emma, go to One of a Kind

For more on Mr. Woodhouse, go to A Bit Pottery About Jane Austen

For more of my favorite songs, go to Let It Go