Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Men of Austen

The other night I watched both Persuasion (2007 version) and Mansfield Park (1999 version) and it brought me to a point of particular thought:

Which hero do I like best?

Well, there are six novels written by Miss Austen. 1. Pride and Prejudice 2. Sense and Sensibility 3. Northanger Abbey 4. Mansfield Park 5. Persuasion and 6. Emma

Each has a leading man, a leading lady, a villain, and a plethora of extras.

For the heroes we have Mr. Darcy, Edward Ferrars, Colonel Brandon, Henry Tilney, Edmund Bertram, Captain Wentworth, and George Knightley.

I'll assume everyone knows the basic plots of all the books... so I won't elaborate. I really love Mr. Darcy because, after all, he was the first Austen hero I ever saw on screen or read about. But more and more I come to love Captain Wentworth and Edmund. Forget about the others... these are the ones I must embellish on!

Mr. Darcy. He is reserved and a very thoughtful man. He thinks hard on everything, especially his friends, and would do anything for them, whether right or wrong. He studies a person and gets to know them before forming an opinion. He is wise with his money, absolutely loves and dotes on his sister. He cares about her well being and will stop at nothing to protect her (even running off creepy guys who want to use her!). Then of course even when he is turned down... he is still irrevocably in love with Elizabeth and goes out of his way to impress her and win her over. He is a true gentleman through and through... yet he is so perfectly flawed. He is a jerk and pretty arrogant and thinks he can get whoever he wants with his money. The nerve! He's presumptuous and expects a lot. But he is so lovable too...

Captain Wentworth. He is soo dreamy :]. His and Anne's love story is close to my top favorite. It probably ties with Lizzie and Mr. Darcy's. But he is so innocent and full of life in the beginning. All he wants is Anne and to love her and be with her forever. He is utterly devoted to her... then she lets him down. It nearly breaks his heart. Years go by and they meet again and his heart is hardened towards her. She is still hopelessly in love with him and he doesn't even see it. The passion of his bitterness and her hope is so... beautiful. OK. We're talking about HIM not the story haha. Well I love it because he is so embittered toward her and you feel his tension around her (because he's still in love with her, duh!). He tries with all his might to ignore her (and fails I might add). He can't keep her off his mind and he is oblivious to the fact that another girl is in love with him. He doesn't even see that every girl is falling head over heals in love with him (and his captaincy). Well he straightens up his act and realizes he's still madly in love with Anne. When the highly elligible Mr. Elliot tries to woo Anne, Wentworth is furious and filled with jealousy. He tries to talk to her but her annoying family ruins everything. Dismayed with jealousy he almost gives up.-yet he doesn't! So his passion for Anne gives him hope. I love the fact that he lays his heart before her once more... willing to let it be broken forever for just one more shot. Ah so romantic. Well she takes him back, of course. I love the passion of Captain Wentworth.

(OK. I know I said I wouldn't retell the stories... but I can't help it! I just love them so much!)

Edmund Bertram. This love came later. One thing that bothers me is how oblivious he is. he just has no idea Fanny is in love with him! Seriously?! She adores him!!! I love the relationship they have. He is so intelligent and tutors her in the ways of the world (ie politics, history, religion, outdoors stuff, etc). They are both very intellectual and discuss matters of all kinds of importance. He reads, yet loves the outdoors. He is very concerned with family honor and is furious when that crazy lady Mary(?) suggests Tom may die. He is shocked she could be so cruel and wish for the death of his older brother!-so out she goes. He also doesn't care what people think. He wants to go into the clerical minister life even though he could have a more prestigious job. That's what he loves, and that's what he was going to do... no matter what anyone said. I love his character bunches... I just have a hard time getting over how dumb he is about Fanny. It takes him the whole book/movie to get with the program!

In the end I think perhaps in real life I would fall for an Edmund (Intelligent, good conversationalist, loves books, writing, loves God, loves music-especially in church, yet a romantic too.) But I love Mr. Darcy's character as well. He is so well mannered and just what a man ought to be. He is sensible, good natured, sensitive, caring, yet reserved. He doesn't cross the line though he wants to; he refrains. BUT I just adore Captain Wentworth as well. I love his passion and love that is like a fire... all he wants is his Anne back! He has always been a good upstanding gentleman and willing to do the right thing, even if it means sacrificing his own happiness.

It's just too hard to pick! They are my top three for sure. If I met any one of these in the flesh I would most likely fall head over heals in a heartbeat!

I appreciate Jane Austen's creativity and novels SO much. I could talk and discuss this for hours :]

I don't know which lady I like best, which villain I hate most, or even which family I dislike the most! haha!

It is so humorous that the families are always so irritating! They all have their funny little flaws. It's so wonderful. All of the stories are so good.

I feel a Jane Austen movie marathon coming on before college starts!! :]

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